Compassionate Karachi

Have you ever noticed the little flower that grows in the garden behind your house? The little flower that goes unnoticed by so many people, have you noticed it, as it lays its scented petals wide open for the bees to suck the sweet nectar from the sweet nectarines? That’s been part of the beautiful world. That’s being part of humanity. And you know what a synonym for humanity is? It’s compassion.

Have you ever understood the feelings of the newspaper man while delivering the early morning newspaper without which you can’t start your day? Have you seen the way his eyes squint when the bright sun shines on his face? How the slight curve on his face causes him to look up to the sky to thank his God for such a beautiful day? It’s the love that He feels towards his Creator. It’s the compassion he feels for his Lord.

Have you noticed the children playing on the streets, with that one ball that always seems to go to the wrong side of the field? How they share their little treats with the savings that they did for days and have a small celebration of their day’s happy play? You know what sharing is? It’s compassion.

Every day when I drive around in my car, I see millions of examples of people showing love and concern towards each other, that makes me think over this fact that a US magazine ‘Foreign Policy’ has termed Karachi “the most dangerous megacity” in the world.

They surely haven’t seen the other part of the city. Compassion is in our roots. Compassion is in our rusted and infertile soil that lets those money plants grow. It’s in the sky that has a masked colour of pale blue because of the pollution in the city, but yet it lets you have a faint glance of the little stars that are fathomed in our constellations.

Compassion, is that farmer from the northern areas who comes to Karachi every winter to sell sweet potato, because the city pays him well. Compassion for us is the Edhi Foundation who says that it will be give kafan and transport to the same robbers who stole money from them, because they don’t discriminate.

Compassion for us is the mazdoor (laborer) that works in the scorching heat of the sun, digging in the ground, at the construction site, for nothing but a day’s food for his family and enough savings for his daughter’s education. It’s in the contented look on an old man’s face, as his son gives him support while walking on the busy streets of Saddar.

We have compassion in those little things that we ourselves sometimes fail to notice around us. We Karachites breed compassion in every walk of life. It’s that one plate of biryani that a group of three college students share and the distribution of food packets every Ramzan.

It’s not the feeling of compassion that is lacking but our failure to observe these little acts of kindness around us. So today when you step out of your houses, your offices or your schools, look around you; those shimmering skies and the people around you. Look at their faces and try to understand the sentiments behind their actions, and you will find it there, the compassion we all are looking for.

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Politics & Compassion

Since 1947 Pakistan has always been in a state of political turmoil. The last government (PPP) was the only democratic government to complete its tenure and handover the power to the new government (PML-N) “elected” by the people. Although, it was claimed that these elections were the most free and fair elections conducted in Pakistan, there was a controversy mainly due to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf’s (PTI) claims that the elections were rigged.

Imran Khan and his supporters believed that these elections were rigged and demanded a judicial committee to be set up but the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) ignored their claims and didn’t consider PTI to be a serious threat. In response of being avoided for more than a year Imran Khan called for a march to the capital.

On the other hand, Pakistan Awaami Tehreek’s (PAT) leader Tahir-ul-Qadri was upset with the model town incident in which several PAT workers were killed and injured by the police. He also led a march to the capital to demand a FIR against the corrupt government officials and Chief Minister Punjab – Shahbaz Sharif who ordered these killings.

Similarly, the people who took part in these marches and rallies apart from the party workers were the civilians who were discontented with the PML-N government due to its inability to prevent violence, abuse, social and religious intolerance, power surges and inflation.

Nawaz Sharif ordered roadblocks and containers to be placed on entry routes to prevent the protestors from coming into the “red-zone.” The protestors halted just before the red-zone and carried on with their peaceful demonstrations. Protests were carried out in different parts of the country including Karachi.

PTI was demanding the PM’s resignation and a caretaker government to be set up until the re-elections. There were traffic and security concerns due to the roadblocks and protests in the country but the people who weren’t participating in this political melodrama kept calm as they knew somewhere in their hearts that it’s being done for the betterment of Pakistan.

Imran Khan’s deadlines kept shifting to later dates every day and no consensus with the government or any kind of result achieved which was acceptable to PTI. Even though the government offered to set up a judicial committee to look into the matters of rigging and conduct re-elections carried out once its report confirms the rigging allegation, it was unacceptable to PTI and they wanted Nawaz’s resignation. A diplomatic deadlock was reached.

But all hell broke loose when the protestors armed with wooden clubs tried to force their way into the red-zone and the prime-minister house. The police responded by “attacking” the protestors with batons, rubber bullets and tear gas injuring more than 400 people. The next day Pakistan Television Corporation’s (PTV) office was attacked and taken under siege which forced the military to take action and the building was reclaimed peacefully.

PTI and PAT are still protesting against the government by their sit-ins on the D-Chowk which has caused the country a loss of more than Rs. 1000billion. These politicians continue their fight for the “kursi” while the Pakistani Army is waging an offensive against the Pakistani Taliban militants and many areas of Punjab are destroyed due to floods.

All the major stake holders whether it’s Imran Khan who is afraid of not gathering any seats in 2018 elections once this government completes its term, Tahir-ul-Qadri the Canadian resident who comes once in a while to spread insurgencies in Pakistan or Nawaz Sharif who is glued to his seat and is in love with his position and power lack empathy and compassion for the people of Pakistan except the Leader of MQM Altaf Hussain and his party who are willing to give away their seats just so that this problem is resolved even though he was accused of murder and other offenses by Imran Khan. Even during the protests carried out in Karachi security was provided by the workers of MQM and they prevented mishaps or any kind of problems in these demonstrations.

In my opinion Imran Khan should call off these protests and accept the government’s proposal for the JC to look into the matter of rigging, so that full attention could be given and necessary measures could be taken to help the flood victims and restore their villages to get their lives back on track. Instead of scoring points against one another these parties should refrain from using harsh words against one another, be empathetic to each other, discuss their grievances, listen and resolve their issues with a neutral mediator like MQM, PPP or a council consisting of members from different parties. At this stage our country needs to focus on helping the flood victims and IDPs rather than creating more issues.

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9 Life Skills Shaping a Better Tomorrow

The future of Pakistan is wholly dependent on its young population. 66 percent of the Pakistani population is below 30 years of age. Keeping this in mind, CfC started a Compassionate School Network where students and teachers are taught nine compassionate skills; altruism, empathy, forgiveness, gratitude, humility, integrity, resilience, self compassion and mindfulness; with the hope that the next generation of Pakistan will grow up to be responsible compassionate adults.

While on the surface the nine skills appear simple telling us what we have been told as children like be honest, be brave, be grateful, be forgiving; however, practicing these skills in our daily lives is by no means an easy task. It is hard to be brave when faced with a difficult life choice. It is difficult to forgive when wronged and it seems impossible to be non judgmental. But all of these things are possible and practicing them has proven to help lead a much happier and healthier life.

The rise in the popularity of yoga practice all over the world shows that our lives have become much more hectic and complicated than they were in the past. Students, employees, parents, teenagers, managers are all taking time out of their daily schedule to practice yoga. But what does yoga do? The basic philosophy behind yoga is ‘mindfulness’. It is to be fully present in a moment with no strings attached. To be non judgmental and only be fully aware of ourselves with all our feelings in that present moment. Mindfulness is also the backbone of the eight skills. Being mindful in any situation is one of the strongest weapons we can possess. When we are mindful we have the power to effectively face any curveballs life may throw at us.

Along with mindfulness it is necessary to be self compassionate. Before moving on to others we must be strong enough to accept our faults and weaknesses. Being acceptable of our strengths and weaknesses gives us the tool to deal with criticism and also to realize our own mistakes which help us grow into being a much better and confident person.

Being grateful, forgiving, altruistic, empathetic and humble are important life skills to have. They make us break through barriers like race, class, social status, and ethnicity. We realize everyone is equal and must be treated with respect and love. Forgiving someone or being empathetic towards someone makes us feel a sense of happiness that cannot be explained. It also makes us much healthier. Research shows that people with these life skills are less depressed and anxious than others and are also more confident and possess good social skills.

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”. This quote by Nelson Mandela perfectly describes resilience. Learning this skill teaches us to get up and try once again in the face of hardships. It makes us strong and challenge the situation instead of giving up. Integrity on the other hand helps us make the right choice and be content with our decision.

Together these nine skills help us become better individuals who are capable of tackling hard situations, treating others as equals and taking the correct steps towards a better tomorrow.

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Compassionate Children

One of the primary goals of the Charter for Compassion is to contribute towards the creation of a more compassionate world in the future. We spend considerable amounts of time at CFC thinking about this, and one of the things we unanimously agree on is that in order to have a more compassionate Pakistan, we’re going to have to invest in the children of our country.

Long term change is, as we all know, slow in coming and requires careful planning and investment. Apart from everyday acts of kindness and compassion, we feel that the best way to bring about a change in Pakistan that will result in our nation being more empathetic and kind is to start teaching children those values.

School Children

School Children

While some schools have subjects such as Ethics and Social Studies, it’s important to question the extent to which children actually internalize the values they are being taught, as opposed to reading and learning about them and treating them as just another subject they have to do homework on. There are several questions parents and educators should ask themselves:

Are the important lessons children are being taught being reinforced in other parts of their lives? What are the methods being employed for the children to think beyond themselves and their own lives? Are children being made aware of the privileges they have?

These are crucial questions that need to be asked when it comes to educating and socializing children. They are after all, as the cliché goes, blank slates. Given how polarized society has become, especially when it comes to economic disparity and the general state of affairs in Pakistan, what with the plethora of problems faced by Pakistanis, forgetting others can become easy. For children, it can be even easier given their short attention spans and how young they are. That’s why it’s important that lessons about compassion, empathy, sharing, and privilege be reinforced through solid examples.

A simple example that is very relevant to our context is that of Ramazan. While at school children are taught that the holy month is about learning to be empathetic, compassionate, and grateful for the blessings we have. And yet, for many children (and adults) the main takeaway after fasting is that after a day of thirst and hunger from sunrise to sunset, they can eat decadent food to their heart’s content. The aspect of relating to those less fortunate, of learning about the true spirit of the month ends up being lost in endless platters of pakoras and other delicacies. The act of giving charity during the holy month won’t mean much to children if they don’t understand the importance of welfare beyond it being an abstract thing to be performed.

There’s a way of involving children with the act of giving, and of making them conscious of the luck and blessings they enjoy, along with fostering in them a spirit of sharing. Various places offer iftar for free for those amongst us who are less fortunate- paying a visit and donating to those is a good way to make children understand the good work being done by these organizations, for example.

We have only a few years to try and inculcate basic humanistic values in children, and lessons learnt young stay in one’s mind for a long time. Let’s make the most of those precious childhood years.

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The recent famine in Thar has left over 100 dead, including children. In a country with plentiful natural resources and an abundance of food, a crisis of this kind is nothing less a case of gross negligence and oversight. It is surprisingly easy to forget the sufferings of others when one does not have to endure life’s vagaries, or so it would seem for our political leaders and government officials.

Amartya Sen, noted economist and Nobel laureate, has asserted time and again that no functional democracy can justify a famine. It is evident, then, that our leaders have failed in fulfilling their basic duties to an entire group of Pakistani citizens. The Thar famine is a crisis on many levels- the first and foremost issue to be dealt with being the famine and the medical emergency faced by the region at this point. Secondly, the current emergency aside, famines are a recurring problem in the Tharparkar area- there is one every two to three years. Despite that, no efforts have been made to deal with what is primarily an infrastructural problem. The region’s wildlife and flora and fauna had started bearing the brunt of this famine before people started suffering, and despite that no notice was taken, nor were any measures implemented.



From a dearth of food to a lack of medical facilities, from ignorance about the problem until it escalated to the point where we currently stand to the lavish selection of food at a meeting held in Mithi to discuss hunger alleviation measures- all these things reek of insensitivity and ignorance.

As easy as it is to feel hopeless in times like these, what is more important is to come together as a community and help out the best way we can. This is a situation that asks for deep introspection into why a crisis of this magnitude arose. It requires us to empathize with the parents who have watched their children starve to death while their own bodies have simultaneously been wracked by pangs of hunger. We should ask ourselves how or when we became so insulated from the sufferings of others that it took the dedicated persistence of journalists to bring this issue to light, while it was more or less ignored by the rest of the country. We’re living in times when, understandably, most people believe in an “every man for himself” philosophy- Pakistan is not the most stable of countries at the point. However, does that mean we forget our sense of humanity?

This crisis calls for widespread education and awareness about the famine and what caused it. We can stress the importance of food and other donations, and no doubt, those are critical at this point; but we also need to think long-term and start a conversation about preventing such a calamity from happening again.  There are two aspects to being a responsible citizen which are supremely important at this point: holding leaders accountable and questioning what they are doing for the people who have elected them, and being knowledgeable about our own duties to fellow citizens. Feeling helpless about the situation and playing blame games is not the answer- there is always time for arguments, but this moment calls for solid action.

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The CfC Compassionate Art Competition 2014

“Art introduced me to Revolution”– Albert Einstein

Dream, believe, achieve is the theme we carry; and in order to do that, it is very important to imagine and dream. Children learn best when they use their imagination, so this time around Charter for Compassion, along with English Biscuit Manufacturers brought forward Children Artists ranging from 6 years to 16 years to participate in an arts competition, which allowed them to dream and draw a compassionate world.

CfC Compassionate Art Competition

CfC Compassionate Art Competition

Topics ranging from random acts of kindness to courage – allowing children to draw, paint and color their imaginations, dreams and emotions. With 9 schools participating and over 400 young artists coming forward, the competition was held on January 30, 2014 at Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Park.

The event started off with an interactive story telling session about Compassion, by trainer & consultant Zohair Allibhoy, covering all nine skills on the CfC Curriculum; Courage, Empathy, Gratitude, Forgiveness, Humility, Self Compassion, Altruism, Mindfulness & Integrity. Anushe Hussain, the project lead, then announced the rules of competition and kicked off the one hour thirty minute draw, color, paint time. The teachers were not allowed to help the students and all art work created was students and students themselves.

No matter who gets the first position, every one of you is a winner today” said Amin Hashwani, President of Charter for Compassion Pakistan, addressing the students, right before the beginning of the competition. Out of hundreds of schools and thousands of students, four hundred taking an initiative to come out and draw a better tomorrow, are definitely winners.

The students enjoyed the outdoor environment and were absorbed in their art works. More than winning, the idea of presenting their thoughts about a compassionate world seemed to appeal to them. And most students, even though finished their drawings earlier than the given time, spent a time refining their art and adding colors to their canvas.

During this time, an interactive talk took place with the teachers, where they were asked about the event, changes after Compassionate School Network and the importance of compassion.

Education is Compassion,” Said one teacher, “the world we are living in possessive little display of compassion, the Compassionate School Network has helped my students develop the courage to display compassion not only towards fellow class mates but people, animals and other living things in general.”

Compassionate Art Competition 2014

Compassionate Art Competition 2014

Compassion is an important skill, it is not only to develop Mindfulness and a sense of Altruism in our future generations, but an important part of character building for our students, making them better human beings” Said another teacher.

Bridging the gap between character and education this competition provided a brilliant opportunity for students and teachers to interact and reflect on their ideas of a compassionate world, where students were divided into three categories; grade one to three, four to six and seven to ten, displayed it in form of their artwork, and teachers learned more about their students.

Volunteers from different universities also came together, actively learning from the young students and helping them with charts, water for painting and time checks.

After an hour and a half of the drawing time, judges, Nafisa Rizvi, Nurayah Nabi Sheikh, Rabeya Jalil, Arshad Faruqi, Scheherzade Junejo and Samar Hussain took rounds to select winners. Going through a complicated decision making process of forty five minutes.

Multiple print & electronic media came in to cover the event, motivating the students further to display their work.

All in all, nine winners were selected from the three categories at first, second and third positions from each category where, Ashra Adeel from Dawood Public School, M. Hassam Bhayat from Jaffar Public School, and Mohib Zafar from Beaconhouse Jubilee Campus took first positions in categories grade one to three, four to six and seven to ten, respectively.

The Navy School for Special children also participated in the competition; interesting it was to see that they managed to reach the venue a little later into the competition and finished before everyone else, producing amazing ideas and thoughts about a compassionate world. Everyone received the first prize from that school as became the unanimous decision by the judges.

The event closed on a high note, where students and teachers endorsed the idea of more events like these on a larger scale, attempting to make Karachi a Compassionate city.

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Celebrating MOVEMBER

Celebrating MOVEMBER

“Movember” kicks off to a start with the hairy ribbon campaign. A campaign that started over 10 years ago with 30 friends, has now become a worldwide movement with over one million people participanting.

The name ‘Movember’ derives from a blend of Moustache and November, and signifies the month when campaigning is done by men, for men. By growing these moustaches, men become walking talking billboards to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer.

With cancer becoming one of the leading causes of death around the world, campaigns to raise awareness for it are becoming more and more vital. With Pinktober, and its focus for breast cancer awareness ending, it is now time to turn our attention towards the “tougher” half of our population, to encourage them to take care of their health. The “I-am-a-man-so-I-can-battle-danger-disease-and-mortal-wounds” attitude has made it even moreimportant that men be made aware of the fact that prostate cancer will not simply “go away.” Prostate canceris now the sixth leading cause for cancer related deaths in men, and one in seven men above 40 diagnosed with cancer, suffer from it. As it is a topic that does not receive much attention,it is now vital to engage in discussions to promote awareness. It is imperative to encourage men to get checkups regularly so that it isdiagnosed in its initial stages.

The idea of “Movember” actually started back in 2003 in Australia, when a group of friends decided to grow moustaches for a month start a trend. After being questioned about their motives incessantly, they decided to use the momentum for something worthwhile and settled on improving awareness on health issues affecting men. The movement soon became increasingly popular and in the last year, 1.1 million people worldwide raised 147.0 million USD for the Prostate Cancer Foundation.


An everlasting impact on the face of men’s health

The money raised to date funds 18 different Prostate Cancer Research Centers, as well as bringing  people together to support the Survivors. This year the movement has gained a following from 27 different countries and millions of people. Where it is yet to make an impact is Pakistan. Conservative ideals have made awareness an issue here. But now, with breast cancer awareness gaining popularity, it is time to encourage prostate cancer awareness. Charter for Compassion takes the initiative in promoting “Movember”, so that this year, it is Pakistani men -and of course all the ladies in their lives- who take part in this campaign, and play a role in raising awareness in our country.

So men, follow the simple rules: shave off all the facial hair and grow a moustache, just a moustache – goatees and grown sideburns are not acceptable- and tell everyone who asks you exactly why you are growing this. And the most important rule; act like gentlemen! Ladies, encourage the men in your life to participate in “Movember” –a month of opened doors and pulled out chairs is a big enough incentive!

This year, let us bring Movember to Pakistan!

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CfC Ramzan Challenge 2013

The Ramzan Challenge 2013 was a new journey for the CfC team as a different venture was embarked upon that was significantly different from the earlier direction that this event had adopted.

CfC-Event 456

The Ramzan challenge gathered a significant amount of interest as opposed to the previous years, mainly due to the ‘hands-on’ approach that the CfC team adopted and the prize money on offer. The aim, to make these students the ‘agents of compassion’ was well-served as some groups came up with astonishing ideas and activities that they had planned all month long.

The CfC-Team took it upon them to provide back office support to all Agents. Groups residing in Karachi spent time visiting CfC Pakistan’s office in order to discuss their respective project details, implementation progress, hurdles, future goals and contingency plans. The veracity with which these projects were executed simply blew the CfC team away.

The culminating event of the Ramzan Challenge was the presentation of all the projects at the Marriot Hotel, in Karachi on the 17th of August. A panel of judges comprising of several different industry CEOs and prominent development practitioners were on hand to assess the projects with regards to their sustainability, viability and community impact.

Each group was allowed to give a short (7-8 minute long) presentation to the judges, comprising of pictures, videos and their overall strategy. There was a short question and answer session at the end of each presentation where the teams were quizzed by the judges on points that were unclear or needed further clarification.

As neutral observers, most members of the CfC team were simply blown away by the effort and time that these students had put into their respective projects. While the competition was certainly very tough, the judges had to reach a consensus on who would walk away with the prizes. The winning project was deemed to be ‘Green EduCycle’, which aims to introduce awareness and advocacy on the importance of recycling as well as partnering with green eco-initiatives to bring recycling on a large scale basis in Pakistan.

RC Finale Collage

The first runner-up was ‘Project Ujala’, which created a network of women artisans that have skills to create artifacts, clothes, jewelry and other accessories that can be sold online using the ecommerce boom in Pakistan. Thereby they are providing these women, who mostly reside in urban slum areas, with a whole new set of opportunities and expanding their market outreach.

And finally, the second runner-up was ‘Learning Mania’, which was a group of technology-savvy students who created a website promoting educational videos online for free. Their aim is to make education available to all and sundry, using simply an internet connection.

For the CfC team, the period of planning, implementing and then judging the competition was an exhilarating experience.

“Not only has it brought to us the feeling that our cause will ultimately prove to be fruitful, it has given us the strength and the vision to forge ahead. We look forward to organizing many more such initiatives in the near future.”

 Aly Zubairy ~ Communications Assistant 


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Dobri Dobrev – A Diamond in the Rough

Every morning at the crack of dawn, 96 year old Dobri Dobrev gets ready to go to work. He leaves his tiny house in Bulgaria’s village of Bailovo and walks to the city of Sofia, a distance of ten kilometers. Upon his arrival in Sofia, unlike most professionals, Dobri has the option to contemplate where he would like to sit and work for the duration of the day. Dobri Dobrev has donated over EUR 40,000 for charitable causes. He has paid utility bills for orphanages and contributed for the restoration of monasteries in Europe. He has become the most generous benefactor of the largest Cathedral in Eastern Europe – St. Alexander Nevsky in the city Sofia.

The spark that follows this man and illuminates his character lies in the fact that he is simply a beggar who collects for others. EUR 40,000 was everything that he had collected on the streets of Sofia. Beggars can’t be chooser, but it seems that they can be generous donors. Dobri Dobrev is one inspirational figure who deserves the undisputed title for one of the most generous people on planet Earth.

In the midst of the Second World War, Dobri Dobrev lost his hearing, an ordeal which presumably prevented him from acquiring a reasonably financially strong job after the war. This impairment however, never stopped Dobri from creating a life full of purpose. The man lives off his pension and surprisingly never dips his hand in the same money jar that he uses to collect from the streets. Even his clothes are homemade along with his leather shoes.dobri1

It is evident that generosity can arise from the most surprising places at times and it doesn’t take a hefty bank account for someone to start being generous either. Billionaires and Millionaires all over the world are mostly recognized for their wealth and sometimes for the sizable donations that they make for social welfare. Dobri Dobrev proves that selflessness, though rarely, can ascend from poverty struck areas as well.

Like wild fire, news of Dobri Dobrev; the 96 year old deaf beggar that donates money, has spread all across the globe as an inspirational tale. Dobri’s fan base continues to increase day by day and spread the word of this unbelievably humble and unconventional beggar.

If you ever choose to visit the beautiful city of Sophia, try to spot a man in the streets, rich as rich can be, and give this man a Euro or two, for he is a one man NGO and one man army, fighting the battle for those in need, as a diamond in the rough.

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The Candy Cab

“No eating or drinking inside this car… Except Candies” says a sign in Mansoor Khalid’s cab.

Mansoor Khalid and his Cab

Mansoor Khalid and his Cab

Mr. Khalid stocks the back dashboard of his yellow cab with a wide range of candies. He is the reason behind the smiles of a multitude of people. His ideology for on the wheels celebration has given New York a unique way of keeping calm during rush hours, getting over the nervousness of the first job interview, forgetting about the tough financial issues, lowering their frustration levels or even double their happiness. Mr Khalid’s cab is filled with candies, has music and is outfitted with an advance lighting system. He has a subwoofer which, according to him, “makes your heart boom.”

Mansoor Khalid is an electrical engineer from Pakistan, who has been driving a yellow cab in New York since 1996. His patience, gratitude and altruism is making a positive difference in the lives of the people he interacts with.

Khalid lost his 18 months old son in 2012, and since then he has turned his cab into a rolling celebration for all New Yorkers. Now he focuses on making people happy, and he says giving others can at-least hide, if not heal, his own feelings of loss.

Khalid’s act of altruism is a true example of finding comfort by making others happy, this is what keeps him going after his irreplaceable loss.

This is what New York has to say about Khalid and his candy cab.

“I was in a bad mood because I’ve been lugging boxes all day,” she said, “You just totally changed my Monday.” – Cassandra Johnson, a typical retail employee in New York

“If you think about it, you have to wonder why he does it,” – Juan Miranda Professional baseball player, who drives in Mr Khalid’s cab during the day.

His passengers on twitter “Sweetest ride in fifteen years. Left my bag of knitting there, but gained so much at heart when I googled you. God bless.”

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