NKD Inspires: Khalsa Aid – Motivated by Humanity
Sarbat da Bhalla’ – ‘well-being for all
The emphasis on equality and unity are clear from the beginning when you grow up in the Sikh faith. Regular visits to our temple, the Gurdwara, found us bringing fruit and milk as an offering which would later be used for langar – free meals made by the community served to anyone. We were encouraged to think about seva – selfless service for others that was always driven by the ‘well-being for all’.
As a Sikh in the modern day, trying to practice these principles in everyday life and a busy workday can be hard to remember, and even harder to do. However, charities such as Khalsa Aid provide the opportunity to not only remember these principles, but the chance to volunteer and practice them.
In 1999, Ravinder Singh was inspired by refugees in Kosovo to practice these Sikh principles on a large scale. So, he set up the charity Khalsa Aid, a UK based humanitarian relief charity, ‘providing support around the world to victims of natural and man-made disasters such as floods, earthquakes, famine and war.’
And just over 20 years later, Khalsa Aid has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 2021. With relief projects that have helped Syrian refugees to helping on the scene during the 2017 Grenfell fire, this comes as no surprise. Khalsa Aid does not limit its work to a certain group of people. At the core of their work is providing basic human needs and a fair change for all.
As Sikhs we pray for the wellbeing of all mankind every day.
A hot meal on a cold night
You probably saw Khalsa Aid on the news recently, and maybe you didn’t even notice. In December 2020 during the travel ban between the UK and France thousands of lorry drivers were stranded for days in their vehicles. Ravi Singh and his amazing team of volunteers travelled around 210 miles to deliver meals to the stranded drivers. Singh references the practise of free food, especially those in need, which is intrisic to the practise of Sikhism.
Khalsa Aid is proof that passion as fuel leads to brilliant results, no matter the scale. For Singh and his team, their work is intrinsically stitched together with their purpose. At every stage of their work chain, from the kitchen to those who were delivering meals to the drivers, the passion for helping others drove them. So what may seem extraordinary to an outsider – can feel like ordinary when you’re driven by passion. If you believe in what you’re doing, the extra mile (or 200 in the case of Khalsa Aid) is what you’ll do to achieve your goal.
There is a lot to learn from the charity’s engagement in community and equality and relentless drive to help all people.
Compassion is priceless
As people, we have a duty to take care of the communities around us and the workplace shouldn’t be any different. Not only is creating a safe and happy environment important for employee wellbeing, more and more people now look for a company with ethics which mirror their own. When it comes to employment, people are looking for companies that go above and beyond just their Corporate Social Responsibility policy but with organisational ethics becoming an integral aspect to the EVP.
It’s the perfect time to take a step back and think about how your organisation can make an impact on the communities around you.
If you need help with your 2020/2021 strategy – we’d love to chat it through with you. Give us a call by hitting connect below.
Read more from Ria here.