Maung And Heiku: Photo by Ahmad Abdalla Abdullah
Maung And Heiku and their teacher Ali (Ahmad) sent me this photo from the birth party for Maung and Heiku which was made possible today by donations from you and me. They asked me to thank you.
It cost about $150, and I only mentioned it once on the blog, I don't want to be asking for too much money from the Army Of Good (AOG), this is a long haul.
I found out recently that Ali has been paying for birthday parties for his students and for the RISSE (the refugee and immigrant support center in Albany, N.Y.) soccer team out of his own pocket, I think it's time to help him out with that. These parties are critically important to these kids, Ali gets cakes and food, hot dogs and hamburgers, for the entire team – about 16 people, and he also buys birthday presents.
For some of these refugee kids, this is the only birthday celebration they will get, or have ever gotten, and it also gives the other refugee children a chance to get together on weekend, when they sometimes struggle for activities.
These parties are very important to Ali and these kids, and I have volunteered to try to raise the funds for the next birthday parties, there are three or four coming up during the soccer season. I am impressed by these young people, they are warm, loving, eager to learn and work. Many have suffered greatly.
They are no threat to America. Many would not be alive if they were not here.
I have enough cash on hand for the next party, if I need help for the rest, I'll post that. We have already purchased and sent art supplies, a van, a printer and an air conditioner for the Mansion to RISSE. I haven't gotten to the adults yet.
We have given the recent arrivals thousands of dollars in blankets and pots and pans and strollers and other supplies, and the Army Of Good has given the RISSE after school program 90 creativity kits, an upcoming trip to the Great Escape Adventure Park, soccer shirt pennies, boxes of books and today's birthday party. There is much need, but every great Army needs to rest once in awhile and regroup.
I don't want people to tax themselves too much. I would like to see this soccer season and birthday party series through and one of the very worthy refugee children needs to raise some money to pay for day care at RISSE, his parents can't help any longer. More later on that, I'm having a meeting about it in the coming week.
If you wish to help sponsor these parties, you can send a check to me at 2502 State Route 22, Cambridge, N.Y., 12816, or send donations via Paypal Friends and Family, [email protected] in any amount. Please mark any and all contributions "Soccer Birthday Parties," so they can be accounted for and recorded. Thank you.
And take it easy on yourself. It's okay to send nothing or small donations, there are a lot of people giving small donations, so they add up without hurting anyone deeply.
Thanks for helping Ali to organize this birthday party. It is a profoundly thoughtful thing for him to do, and it goes far above and beyond what is required of him. I hope to attend the next one.
This means a great deal. Here, we don't argue about what is good, we do good. Ari told the kids that some angels had appeared from the heavens to help them.