Christmas Charity Drive Kursk 2007

Category: By Aleckii
If you read my earlier post (link here) you would notice that the Student Catholic Community here in Kursk is organizing a Christmas charity drive this year. I actually had had this idea for the longest time. Somehow, this year I just knew in my heart we’re finally going to be able to pull off a great event.

Anyway, we were planning that during our Christmas Holiday (Russian Orthodox Christmas falls on the 7th January), we would organize a trip to the local orphanage, hopefully bringing the joy of Christmas to them. We were planning to possible rent a bus, get hold of a team of gung ho students, then prepare some food, some tid bits, get ready a few performances like our Christmas caroling, some games, and of course, lots of presents! For awhile, I even thought of raising enough funds to possibly give the orphanage a monetary donation. But somehow, considering that the number of Catholic students here in Kursk (I estimated at less than a hundred; church-going and active ones less than 60), it was extremely hard to raise enough fund.

So our brilliant idea was to dedicate our time doing something productive. Jane, a senior from Sibu, have been helping friends cutting their hair as a favor. And she was the one who suggested that perhaps she can start a barbershop business, where the fee collected will be donated to our cause. This of course, was a brilliant idea. Knowing me, I immediately thought of cooking something, maybe selling some food for a fee, the profit of which will be donated totally to this charitable cause.

So here we were, armed with nothing more than our bare hands (maybe a pair of scissors and a frying pan) and sheer determination, decided to give up a part of our weekend to this cause.

2 weeks on, Jane has already managed to collect quite a huge sum of money. From what I heard, you actually need to make appointment at least a week ahead since she has so many customers.

As for me, my best God-given talent is cooking. What better way to repay Him if not to COOK for charity? So from Monday I started distributing flyers promoting this Fast-food store that I have, selling 2 types of burgers (Fish and chicken) with options for cheese add-ons for a small fee, and 3 varieties of pizzas.

Orders started coming in, and I had to remind myself several times of my own limit. For sometimes I get too caught up in the hype of something I tend to forget about tiring myself or wearing myself out.

By Friday, I had ended up with 24 different orders.

Today, class ended at 10.30am. I arrived at the market at 11am, and from then onwards, busied myself with shopping for things, cooking the food, delivering the food and et cetera. It wasn’t until 7.30pm that I took a break to have dinner with some friends for a friend’s birthday. After dinner, I hopped right back into doing another friend’s pizza order.

At the end, in 24 hours, I did 3 chicken supreme pizzas, 1 pepperoni and cheese pizza, 8 chicken burger and 4 fish burger. It wasn’t until 11pm that I had my shower. By then my face was extremely oily, my t-shirt the smell of grease, sweat and cheese, and my foot so sore it actually hurts. But somehow, I feel strangely satisfied and contented. In 24 hours I managed to rake up a total of 443 rubles, about RM60. Not much- I know, but I did it on my own accord, with my own hard work. I still have a few weeks until Christmas, and hopefully in the coming weeks, with the grace of God, I will be able to do more and collect more money. By last weekend, Jane had also managed to collect around 350 rubles, around RM50, cutting people’s hair. I think at the end we will be able to collect enough for our need.

Anyway, I took some pictures of the food I prepared.

This is a cream-based pizza, a crowd favourite, Chicken Supreme with chunks of grilled chicken, champignon mushroom and cheese and parsley topping. As just in case you’re wondering, in order to cut cost (and to raise more for the charity fund), I threw out the idea of buying pre-made dough and decided to do each and every single crust from scratch (that’s yeast and flour and a whole lot of sticky-dough-mixing for me).

This is a picture of the Hawaiian Delight. Believe it or not, I learnt how to make it from a visit to Pizza Heart back when I was in form 4. Through this junior journalism program, one week we were invited to the launching of the Stuff-crust Pizza, and I got to make my first pizza first hand there, at Pizza Hut Satok Branch.

This is a picture of Chicken burger (left) and a Fish burger (right). For the chicken I used meat from the drumstick and for the fish, tilapia fillet. Both fried to perfection and served with lettuce, fresh tomatoes, onion, mayonnaise and tomato sauce. I’ve been getting mixed reactions so far about the burgers. Some commented I could improve more on a few aspects, other said they were excellent.

In the coming weeks I was even thinking about baking cakes or cookies for sales, and some juniors are coming up with this idea to sell Christmas cards. I guess as they say, you can only pray for and work for so hard, the rest lay in the hands of God.

4 comments so far.

  1. X'tina November 17, 2007 at 4:56 PM
    Good job there kelvin, keep it out. I know it is not easy especially with the limited resources like utensils when you do baking like that...not like own kitchen at home where you have nearly everything you need from rolling pin to kitchen gloves..but I salute you for doing so many pizzas a day...looks nice too. Proud of you.
  2. l y n n w e i November 18, 2007 at 8:15 PM
    it's wonderful what you are doing!!

    dont wont get tired when you are doing things for God...and there will be joy and peace from above!!

    it's really great!!

    hhm..isnt jane from Miri? kekeke..i mean the senior jane
  3. lynnx01 November 19, 2007 at 7:10 AM
    I also thought it's the Miri Jane. Hehe. LoLz. But WHOA!!! I think your pizza is way better than the Domino's Pizza we ordered just now (RM15 down the drain... and I am broke again). For our campus here, we are planning to do Christmas carolling, a collaboration between the Catholic Students' Society and Christian Fellowship. Not sure if I can commit or not.. since I can't sing and my studies have been in a mess...
  4. Aleckii November 19, 2007 at 10:39 AM
    X'tina: Thanks for your encouraging words!

    Lynnwei: Exactly! I felt that I was weary at the end of the day, but at the same time, strangely satisfied and happy.
    And yes, Jane is from Miri, will do the correction immediately! haha!

    Lynnxuan: Domino's Pizza? I haven't had one of those in... 2, 3 years? Even the pizzas from Pizza hut seem like a distant memory now! And yes, I am involved in our Catholic student Christmas Caroling too! I think you should join if you're interested. There is so much joy in singing songs and lifting people's spirit during the holiday season!

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