Copyright 2009 Spark of Hope. All Rights Reserved.
Spark of Hope is a Calgary-based organization dedicated to helping the world's most marginal populations by providing high-quality educational opportunities. in 2003, in the village of Goharabad in mountainous northern Pakistan, children as young as six walked 6 km to school each day on rough and rocky paths. Mothers sometimes carried their children to and from school.
The Mawani family of Calgary visited this community seven years ago. "When we went in 2003," says Shabira Mawani, "there was so much need. The abject poverty just moves you. You are speechless when you are there and you realize that you have everything and these people just have nothing. You want to do whatever you can."
On returning to Canada, the family created spark of Hope. Many trips to Pakistan and a lot of dynamite and wheelbarrows full of rock to build a modern school in the village. Spark of Hope also runs several programs to help Goharabad families become independent. Says Salim Mawani: "We believe it is our ethical responsibility to help those in need. When we help each other and understand each other, that is peace."