Approximately 100 families and individuals, including Raiza and many elderly people, received gifts from the distribution. The practical gifts from GFA missionaries brought hope and warmth. Thanksgiving and joyful hearts, including Raiza’s, abounded. She could scarcely believe her eyes when she beheld the beautiful, thick blanket she received!
“I never received such a thick and warm blanket [before],” Raiza exclaimed. “Today, [the church] has filled my heart with joy and happiness by giving me this blanket.
“I did not have such kind of blanket at my home, and I was unable to buy [one]. We all were surviving this excessive cold with old blankets. Especially, my in-laws were facing difficulty to spend the night. … I thank [the church] from the bottom of my heart for this warm and thick blanket.”
Though Raiza returned home with the load of her gift, her heart was light. The weight of this blanket would ease winter’s burden for her family. Her in-laws and young daughters would be warm, protected from the cold and ailments it might bring. They could sleep soundly and awake rested. This blanket’s warmth, both physical and emotional, could change their lives.
"I never received such a thick and warm blanket [before]. . .Today, [the church] has filled my heart with joy and happiness by giving me this blanket."
There are many people like Raiza living in remote, mountainous regions who are still in need of warmth. Every winter, they suffer through the cold, perhaps hoping they’ll survive.
One man, Bandi, shared some of their struggle.
“Poverty has bound us for a long time, and we are unable to escape from it,” Bandi said. “Every year we bear excessive cold without warm clothes, and we become prey to skin diseases. When we think about our lives, I ask myself, why are we on the earth and how long should we have to bear the pain?”
They can’t afford to buy sufficient clothing or blankets with their scant incomes. Often, they can barely feed their families. For many, the strain of the COVID-19 pandemic has plunged them even further into poverty.
People like Raiza are willing to walk an hour just to receive a blanket. A warm blanket or a winter clothing packet can be life-changing for those in need. It protects from the cold and from sicknesses. A blanket enables the bearer to rest well rather than shiver through the night. Winter clothing enables workers to work and children to study.