This week there could not be any other topic of relevance in the community, other than celebrating the spirit of giving.
All was not well within the Kiwi-Indian community this week, or possibly for past couple of weeks, especially in our Malayali and Telugu community.
First, there was the weird and possibly scaring news of a Waikato based Indian family becoming almost “unresponsive and vegetative” after eating the seemingly harmless meat of a wild boar, hunted locally.
The numerous images of the suffering family and their anxious, but completely safe children had been animating in the minds and imaginations of many of us.
Followed by this was the tragic news of the demise of a young 24-year-old Indian mum, and a relatively recent migrant to this country, who lost her battle with an aggressive form of cancer in Hamilton.
Since this news was a follow-up of earlier news a few months ago, when she was diagnosed with stage 4 of Adenocarcinoma (a form of cancer) during the 25th month of her pregnancy, followed by birth of a premature baby, therefore once again it managed to spur a lot of emotions in the community.
Probably this was too much of emotional distress that often besieges the nearest and dearest ones who are left behind to face the dramatic consequences of misfortune, to escape an attention from The Indian Weekender’s editorial comment.
Indeed, these were instances individual misfortune, besetting some selected few, which being regrettable does not present themselves as a public issue, warranting an editorial comment.
However, it is the spirit of giving and the spirit of supporting others, which often outlasts those experiencing personal miseries, which deserves a special mention here.
In both these cases, the way community has rallied up, often digging deep within themselves and then reaching out to others, often reluctantly as a last resort to look after those who are left behind to face the vagaries of life is something to celebrate and cherish.
Being a migrant is never easy, as it often tests the strength of human courage in leading a life out of comfort zone of one’s homeland and culture.
And when migrants have to experience such unfortunate miseries, then the impact is further exasperated, often requiring much greater support system of friends and family to overcome.
In wild boar eating case, the close friends, the members of Malayali community and the local Hamilton Marthoma congregation have not only rallied together to take care of anxious kids, making travel arrangements of relatives from India, and then also working together to sustain them in NZ.
Similarly, earlier in the case of Indian mum suffering from cancer, the Telugu community had rallied, with support from the wider Kiwi-Indian community, to generate funds to pay for the cost of bringing her parents to the country and be at the bedside of their suffering daughter.
It is also timely to share several instances where often Indian Weekender’s office receives phone calls from kind and generous donors, based in regional areas away from Auckland, who takes the pain of calling and asking for bank account details so they can chip for such noble cause.
At those moments we certainly take a break from our busy modern lives, even momentarily, to salute their spirit of giving and supporting each other in the community.
It is their small individual efforts that add together to make some discernible impact on the lives of those who are left behind alone facing consequences of death or other unfortunate medical emergencies in their families.
It is apt to remind everyone that we all are migrants in this country with limited or no personal support system, and often relying on fellow community members to steer through difficult periods of life.
This week, The Indian Weekender is opting to salute that unrelenting spirit of our fellow Kiwi-Indians, who chose not to turn their back when needed most by others in the community.