As pandemic-related quarantine regulations eased in December 2020, SSSIO volunteers in Kazakhstan resumed serving low-income families in four cities. In southeastern Kazakhstan, 60 people received hot food along with masks, gloves, and clothing. Packets containing vegetable oil, cereals, vegetables, fruits, sweets, and hygiene products such as washing powder and toothpaste were provided to 11 large families.
SSSIO volunteers received a touching letter written by a 5-year-old girl to Santa Claus: “Hello, Santa Claus. My name is Madina. My birthday is coming soon. I really want my mother to get well and not get sick anymore, and dad to come back to life in the New Year, so that on New Year’s Eve we have a lot of food, fruits and gifts at home.” SSSIO members helped Santa Claus by delivering groceries and New Year gifts to the family, as well as a jacket for the little girl Madina, for her birthday. In addition, volunteers delivered New Year’s gifts, pizza, cake, and juice to 40 needy children.
In the western part of the country, warm blankets were distributed at the local animal shelter for stray dogs. Volunteers also played with the animals who thoroughly enjoyed their company and attention.
In northern Kazakhstan, SSSIO volunteers delivered clothes, hot meals, tea, and sweets to 30 individuals living in impoverished quarters, twice a month. The volunteers also spread holiday cheer by decorating the premises with garlands.
SSSIO members gave New Year presents to 12 children living in a hostel for low-income families. Single-parent families received new bedding and all residents received pies and baursaks (deep fried butter balls) to celebrate the holiday season. The volunteers also served hot food to 24 people.