Hidden Gems

Hidden Gems I’ve written previously how and why it took 13 years to accomplish my dream of setting up an orphan sponsorship program. We started with 50 orphans in the displaced population camps, and then expanded to supporting Rohingya orphans in refugee camps who had lost both their parents to the horrors of the Rohingya genocide. As […]

Away from the limelight, a genocide is ongoing

Away from the limelight, a genocide is ongoing. Just this week, the Myanmar junta bombarded Thar Dar Rohingya village in Minbya Township, with reports of 24 innocent Rohingya men, women and children murdered, and another 60 injured.  About half a million Rohingya continue to live under constant threat in Myanmar, unsafe in their own homes. […]

An Orphan From the Camps Finds His Way to Montreal, Canada

An Orphan From the Camps Finds His Way to Montreal, Canada I received a gift on Friday night, one unlike any gift I’d ever received before featuring a very special visit by someone not just from kilometers away, but from another world altogether: Mohammed Irfan Khan. I’d met Irfan twice previously under different circumstances. Our first […]

Snowball in the Camps

Snowball in the Camps There’s just something very Canadian about snow. When I think back to the start of this journey, a very small initiative with 28 kids, and subsequently cobbling together some more relatively small-scale humanitarian projects, it didn’t occur to me at the time where it would all lead to over 15 years […]

RIP Fahmida

RIP Fahmida I met Fahmida back in 2009. She was visually-impaired and lived alone in a small hut. Her husband and children did not survive the trials of time and conflict; she languished alone for close to four decades in a squalid displaced population camp. Her home was a tiny 8′ x 10′ space; the […]

An Unexpected Journey

An Unexpected Journey There I was, being hugged by a young boy not more than 8, his cheek on my cheek. He was a Rohingya orphan, far removed from his land, his community, his family. An orphan whose childhood innocence had been cruelly snatched and was left longing for the care, love and company of […]

First Dignity, Then Charity

First Dignity, Then Charity Ramadan is upon us once again, and during this month Muslims are encouraged to give generously to those with less.  We fast during the day from food and water in the hopes that we will be grateful, remember to be humble, and give generously from what we have. Ramadan is a […]

How our eyesight restoration program opened my eyes

How our eyesight restoration program opened my eyes OBAT Canada posted this short video interview put together by students at one of the OBAT vocational centers- they did everything, including the subtitles in English. This product is amazing to see from our students, all from displaced population camps; it shows how OBAT has made – and continues […]

Hope Lives in the Rohingya Refugee Camps

Hope Lives in the Rohingya Refugee Camps The Hope of the Human Spirit Before the Covid-19 Pandemic, I had the opportunity to do volunteer work at a Rohingya refugee camp in Cox’s Bazaar, Bangladesh with OBAT Canada. There are approximately one million Rohingya refugees in these camps, the vast majority of them arriving to Bangladesh […]

Saving the Lives of Mothers and their Babies

Saving the Lives of Mothers and their Babies Six years ago, Mehwish and I decided to volunteer in the displaced population camps in Bangladesh. Going into the project, we had a really simple goal: conduct a survey to understand more about the population and find out what their needs are. And yet somewhere along the […]