UNITED SIKHS and local volunteers distributing aid to victims of the Myanmar flooding crisis of 2015, and building homes in the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan struck the country in 2013.
UNITED SIKHS client Iknoor Singh participating in training.
North America - UNITED SIKHS would like to congratulate its volunteers, supporters, and fellow Americans and Canadians this Labor Day - a holiday that commemorates the essential achievements of workers and laborers who persevere in their respective fields to improve our communities at large. Our world is not only inhabitable, but a beautiful and enjoyable place because of those who labor to make it what it is. Any honest living that contributes to this is an honorable one, and necessary to a vastly greater picture.
It is notable that we celebrate this day during the month of September, as September also marks the anniversary of the first Parkash Diwas of the Guru Granth Sahib Ji-the Sikh holy scripture. The Vaakh that was taken on September 1st, 1604 focuses on the Lord's appreciation of mankind's hard work and devotion, and states that whoever works hard will be helped by Him:
"The Lord himself has stood up to resolve the affairs of the saints; He has come to complete their tasks. The land is beautiful and the pool is beautiful, within it is contained the ambrosial nectar. The water is filling it, and my job is perfectly complete; all my desires are fulfilled (...) The transcendent lord has kept his promise, and confirmed his nature."
As explained here by the fifth Sikh prophet Guru Arjan Dev Ji, to fulfill one's duty-whether it is to God or to one's community-is of utmost importance, and creates a distinct feeling of fulfillment. Through His creation, He maintains this majestic Earth. We as His creation are therefore blessed to be able to carry out our duties, and should view them as labors of love.
This year, Iknoor Singh courageously stood up for his right to maintain his articles of faith while undergoing Reserved Officers Training Corps training, in pursuit of his dream to serve in the U.S. Army. We took on his case, and together we saw him emerge victorious. In Nepal and Myanmar, volunteers gathered together to make a difference in the lives of over 10,000 individuals effected by devastating natural disasters. This Labor Day, UNITED SIKHS is inspired by the labor undertaken by its clients, community, and volunteers, and pledges to strive to fulfill our duty to those who are in need of humanitarian relief or have received unjust treatment because of their religious, ethnic, or racial identity.
We are humbled by your support, without which none of this would be possible.
Staff Attorney, International Civil and Human Rights Advocacy (ICHRA)
P: (646) 688- 3525
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Director, UNITED SIKHS (CANADA)
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