By Sameera Aziz
(AIA) – Pakistan Hajj Volunteers Group (PHVG) has started the registration to serve pilgrims for the year of 2015 in Saudi Arabia. People from Saudi Arabia wishing to volunteer must submit their interest by completing the online volunteer form at http://www.hajj-volunteers.com
The PVHG is a non-governmental and non-political body which serves Hajj pilgrims without any discrimination. As a particular aim, it is solely focused on service to attain the blessings of Allah in this world and in the hereafter. “Atop enumerated and various other actualities, demand of us that following the teachings of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), abounded with benevolence, empathy and sacrifice, we endeavor our services to assist pilgrims, for the sake of Allah’s gratification and salvage our Hereafter. By the grace of Allah (SWT), we have procreated Pakistan Volunteer Hajj Group (PVHG) befitting this cause,” stated the official website of the Group.
Some 3,000 volunteers will be recruited, and almost 200 key volunteers will be selected to lead ‘plan-2015’ of PHVG. The media cell of PHVG informed that the registration is going well enough with success. “We will select 3000 volunteers. Total 1500 volunteers will be selected from Jeddah, Madinah, Jizan, Abha and Khamees Mushayt, along with 1000 volunteers from Riyadh, 300 volunteers from Dammam, Al-Khober and Jubail; 200 from Makkah and Taif will be chosen. We will register for 3500 volunteers but select 3000 among them after the interview to observe about their passion and sincerity for the volunteerism, “said the spokesperson of PHVG who does not want to highlight his name to avoid the self-projection.
“We rather like to highlight PHVG and its sincere aim because it is actually a volunteer work and purely to gain pleasure of Allah. This is the reason we don’t have any designator,” he elucidated.
Shedding light on the work strategy of PHVG, spokesperson said that they had only a committee which has coordinators. “A volunteer leads each department like media cell, training of volunteers, registration, operational and management. All teams are coordinated by some volunteers. Some people arrange logistics and transportation of volunteers for Jeddah to Makkah route. There is a food and accommodation committee of volunteers as well, because volunteers have to stay in Mina on 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th Zul-Hijjah. All volunteers have the same designation, and we work in less-conspicuous position to stay out of the limelight,” he explained.
There are some criteria for volunteerism in PHVG. A volunteer should be a male and a Pakistani national as well as a legal resident of Saudi Arabia. His age should be 16 years and older with good health conditions. He must have performed Hajj already and should give assurance that he will not perform Hajj during volunteerism. He will only have to perform his duties by donating his services to earn the reward from Allah. These volunteers cannot earn any financial or non-financial benefits. They have to attend training sessions as required by PHVG and students can participate as well. All volunteers will be granted an experience certificate.
The 2015 / 1436 Hajj agenda of PHVG consists of an awareness program to make Hajj easy and correct. Guidance in Mina, Arafat, Mudalifa, Jamarat in native languages to complement other Hajj service groups is included within the plan. The PHVG also works to enhance effectiveness and efficiency of other Hajj programs under WAMY, Pakistan and Saudi Government through extending required support.
All volunteers will have to carry their original Iqama (residential permit of Saudi Arabia) with them at all the times. Any copies, even attested copies, are not acceptable. They will abide by the Saudi laws and follow PHVG instructions given to execute their duty. They will be made capable to execute after the special training with regards to exercising their devoirs. They will have to attend two training sessions of two hours each on Thursday evenings in September. The enrolled volunteers will be provided with legal permits and allocated with adequate accommodation, transport and simple food.
The PHVG will provide support to volunteers in collaboration with WAMY and Pakistan Hajj Mission. They will have an official permission to enter Mina, Arafat and Mudalifa as volunteers. Bus Transportation from Jeddah to Mina and back will be provided to volunteers along with an economic standard accommodation and food in the district of Azizyah in Makkah. With legal framework, TV Screens for total 140 buildings, awareness material production, communication devices and required tools, i.e. mobile phones, GPS, information guides, contact list as well as financial resources to execute agreed activities will be provided to volunteers. They will have to serve the pilgrims wearing official jacket and cap as a uniform during the period of their stay in Mina, Arafat, and Mudalifa, specifically from 7th to 12th of Dhul Hijja and work in 12 hours shifts, mainly at various outdoor service points. They have to use PHVG volunteer kit, but only during services in Mina and Makkah during Hajj days in 2015. However, after Hajj, PHVG Kit can be used in PHVG events at most.
The PHVG mentions that it or any of its officials will not be held responsible for any kind of financial and non-financial loss, thievery, and damage as well as any loss caused due to accidents to volunteer or his property while working. Having encountered the phenomenal experience, PHVG informs about its need to be savvy. It says that in an arduous and testing task of Hajj, most of the Pakistani pilgrims appertain to the relatively less literate class. “Majority are elderly and hence feeble. Communication is a colossal concern since the masses are accustomed to their mother tongues. Legions of pilgrims lose track of their groups, spending several agonizing days unattended,” stated its web portal in a message to mention about the need of the Hajj volunteers.
For latest updates please, the Facebook Page of PHVG can be liked at: https://www.facebook.com/pakistanhajjvolunteersgroup
For queries and information, an e-mail can be sent at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 059 073 8922 and 054 021 8134 (Jeddah), 053 285 0083 (Riyadh), 055 553 8854 (Makkah) and 059 959 9018 (Dammam).
Sameera Aziz is the Saudi Media Personality, President of the Asian Information Agency (AIA), owner of Sana Solkar Production in India and presenter of Marhaba With Sameera Aziz at Asian Radio Live in UK. She can be reached at www.SameeraAziz.com