Altruism is not dead, not even during a global pandemic.
Whilst Covid-19 is bringing out the worst in some people, for others, it’s shedding light on the importance of giving back and helping one another. For these Sri Lankan newlyweds, despite spending months planning their grand matrimony, lending a helping hand to those in need was ultimately more important than their own big day.
When news broke that Sri Lanka would be in lockdown, the newlyweds knew that it would lead to scarcity of food amongst the villagers, thus it wouldn’t feel right to continue with their extravagant event.
The groom, Darshana Kumara Wijenarayana, said,
“By that time, we had made all the arrangements. Clothes, rings and cakes had been ordered. The reception hall was booked. We had planned to invite 250 guests.”
Family and friends urged them to postpone, but instead they decided to go through with the wedding albeit the non-traditional route. They cut their wedding cake and instead of feeding each other, they fed their impoverished neighbours instead.
Darshana alongside his wife Pawani wore face masks and their wedding attire as they walked around their village, distributing food to those who needed their aid. For families with small children, the couple even brought toys to gift to them. Keeping it sanitary, everything was wrapped in plastic and they applied hand sanitiser regularly.
When asked how he felt about their wedding, he said,
“By doing this, we got a great satisfaction. When you see the happiness on the face of these people, especially the kids… you see…. I don’t have words to explain that happiness.”
They didn’t just celebrate their love for each other on that day, but they also celebrated their love for their community. Due to their act of kindness, they received multiple phone calls thanking them for their generosity. That and everything else they did, should make it a day to be remembered.
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