ING Mongolia donates towards Lunar New Year Food Drive
Prior to 2016 Lunar New Year celebrations, ING Mongolia in collaboration with the Veloo Foundation participated in a Lunar New Year Food collection.
The purpose of the initiative was to reach out to the neediest families in the community and those that make a living scavenging from Ulaanbaatar City’s landfill sites. The initial target had been to collect enough food items to donate a Lunar New Year basket to 35 families. Each basket was to contain both staple food items and where possible some treats to last beyond the three day Lunar New Year celebrations.
Funds were raised through donations by local staff and ING personnel selected and purchased food items from Ulaanbaatar’s largest market for 15 families.
The three day Tsagaan Sar celebrations mark more than just the start of a new lunar year. It marks a change in the seasons, with nomadic families bidding farewell to the harshest of the winter weather and within 3 months temperatures will again be above zero and outdoor work and activities will again start in earnest.
During this holiday every family strives to set a full dinner table featuring traditional Mongolian food and sweets symbolizing wealth and good health in the coming year. Culturally, it is believed that the fuller your dinner table the more prosperous you will be in the coming year.
The initiative received overwhelming support, in addition to the packaged food items, fire wood, coal and sacks of Mongolian grown potatoes were also donated. The response was such that from the originally targeted 35 families the initiative was able to deliver food to over 80 families.
More than providing temporary nourishment, the food donations have empowered these families to be able to open their gers (traditional dwellings) and pay respect to their families and celebrate the holidays as so many other Mongolians will be doing.
It is important for us all to remember that these people face the toughest of lives and need our help not just at times of national celebration but continually throughout the year.
SOURCE: ING MONGOLIA