It isn't much, but it's yours, Victoria

It isn't much, but it's yours, Victoria

ABOUT 16,000 of Bangladesh’s poorest inhabitants have banded together to raise $800 for Victoria’s bushfire victims.

The residents of flood-ravaged Bhola Island, where the average weekly wage is about $4, collected the money largely from donations of five cents or less.

The fundraising drive was instigated by students at a network of Australian-run schools, many of whom have lost their homes to the floods, cyclones and monsoons that regularly pound Bangladesh’s biggest island.

“I was telling some of the children how severe the fires were and they asked if they could give some money to the appeal,” Queenslander Fred Hyde, 89, who has built 42 schools for underprivileged children on Bhola Island since 1991, said.

“These children don’t get pocket money. They are poor and donating this money would have meant a huge sacrifice — maybe cutting back on rice or walking miles to the market.”

Mr Hyde said he was humbled when they presented him with about 44,000 taka ($800) in coins for Victorian fire victims.

Most of the 9000 students enrolled in Mr Hyde’s school network donated what they could afford.

Those too poor to contribute sought donations from shoppers at local markets, friends and relatives.

“I thought about giving the money back because I felt like I was taking from them,” Mr Hyde said.

“But they insisted, because they know how important school is in their lives and that Australian children had lost their schools in the fires.”

Link requested by Borhanuddin Shafi | original source

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