Ode to #Nafeer



Everyone is talking about #Nafeer these days. It’s a pleasant surprise to see how the movement is not just still in business but is actually gaining momentum. Usually things like this are popular for a while but then sort of fade away because a) they’re exhausting, b) since it depends on volunteers they almost always have to get on with their lives/jobs/studies at some point, and c) the donations slowly trickle down then stop. But so far, #Nafeer is charging along and actually getting stronger, smarter and more organized as it builds its manpower and experience. The last number I heard was 6,000+ registered volunteers.
But the important thing is this: at no point from beginning to end did the issue of race, political commitment or religion come into question for these people. Help went out to everyone regardless of who they are. The discrimination our government has been hammering into our heads forever apparently didn’t get that deep, and that’s what’s such a relief. Of course, a couple of political parties attempted to hijack the movement and take it under their wing, but no one paid them any attention and they went away. But the fact that the millennials are actually stepping away from their laptops and smart phones and getting down in the dirt to help people who live in places they had never even heard of, and would probably never had crossed paths with in their lives hadn’t God chosen 2013 as the year of the floods; this fact alone is one to ponder. The elections couldn’t get a fraction of these people together. The #SudanRevolts almost the same, aside from the ruckus on social media sites (but zilch on the streets). When the secession happened, people complained about the map and the racism and the oil, but no one actually did anything. We’ve seen Ramadan and Shari3 Al7awadith as sporadic but regular activities that disappear with the passing of the moment. But this is the first time something like this happens, and the first time it happens from such an unlikely sector of the community that has gained a reputation for its laziness, apathy, superficial approach to life and generally gloomy future. Apparently, we were wrong about them. Probably not completely wrong, but it gives us hope for the future of this country, and that maybe things aren’t so bad after all.

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