I have written these lines before, I am writing this again. These words have offered comfort to me time and again. I hope they offer some comfort to you.

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” – Fred Rogers

In this newsletter, we try very hard to look at the positive news. However, for over a year we have all been stuck in a pandemic and I’ll admit, sometimes, looking for positive news amidst a lot of tragedy is like looking for a needle in a haystack. After all, while we are all sailing in the same sea, all of our boats are very different, aren’t they? As you might be aware, right now, India – the country of our family, the place that will be our forever home no matter where we end up in the world – is suffering right now, the second surge of the Covid-19 pandemic is overwhelming. Some of you will be worrying about grandparents, friends and extended family. Can we really find hope in the middle of this?

I don’t know about hope but I do know that the people of India have risen to the challenges that are facing them with enormous strength, dignity and courage.

It goes without saying that the frontliners – doctors, nurses, paramedics and cremation workers amongst others – are working around the clock. We are all so grateful to them.

The general population is raising money, college students are working around the clock manning phone lines and checking on the availability of beds, people are cooking food and delivering it to patients and their quarantined families…In short, everyone is trying to come together to help.
Here are some helpers:

  • A couple in Mumbai, Pascal and Rozy Saldanha, sold their jewelry to pay for oxygen cylinders.
  • A businessman in Kochi, Najeeb Vellakal, transformed his tempo travellers into ambulances especially adapted for Covid-care.
  • Sneha Raghavan and Shloka Ashok from Bengaluru – students in Class 10 – raised Rs 2 Lakh in 24 hours to buy oximeters to help those who are living below the poverty line.
  • Vishal Singh of Gurugram, has set up a free-Covid care center.

I hope these inspirational icons offer some comfort and hope.

The month of May brings with more festivities- once again quieter this year – but in times of trouble, we have learned of ways to come together while staying apart. One date to mark on your calendar is Sunday the 9th of May which is…Yep, you’ve guessed it, is International Mother’s Day! How will you make your mum feel special?

Eid will be celebrated in the middle of May, quite possibly aroundabout the 12th of May. Eid al-Fitr is a religious holiday celebrated by Muslims all over the world which marks the end of the month-long dawn-to-sunset fasting of Ramadan. We wish you Eid Mubarak in advance!

In our issue this month, Ishaan Parameshwar introduces the first two chapters of his story about the magnificent Grimcodile. Adrita Sanyal pays a tribute to her mother. Eeshan Mishra talks about Chaitra Navratri. Ramya Vinoth from IAW (Indian Association Wettingen) has created an article for us all about Earth Day, why it means a lot and about all the hopes that the young members of IAW have about the future. In our art gallery, we have art from Samanvay Ray, Archisha Ray.

We hope you enjoy the issue! Please do write to us if you would like to contribute to the next issue!

Disclaimer: Namaste Switzerland does not undertake any financial, reputational, legal, misrepresentational or other obligation or liability which may arise from the content of this article.