Nowruz Mubarak!

LIFE OUT OF LOCKDOWN: GLASGOW’S CHILDREN SHARE THEIR WISHES FOR THE COMING YEAR

FAMILY, friends and a return to normal life – children shared their wishes for the next 12 months as GAU celebrated Nowruz while Scotland moves slowly out of lockdown.

The country shut down one year ago as authorities moved to protect lives amidst the growing pandemic.

We’ve kept our youngsters going through online language classes and school clubs, but we know it’s not the same and we are all looking forward to the day we can gather together again as we used to.

This includes a return to the Nowruz celebrations we’re used to. GAU hosts a special Nowruz party every year for our members and the wider community. This year we all did our best to keep tradition alive in a new way, using technology. More than 100 women logged in for an online celebration, at which Glasgow Central MP Alison Thewliss was the guest speaker.

We are always happy to include all people in Nowruz, or “new day”. The 3,000-year-old spring celebration marks the start of the Persian new year and is celebrated by more than 300 million people worldwide, including Afghanistan, Albania, Iran and Turkey.

During this time of regeneration, growth and change, some of our youngest members revealed their hopes and dreams for the next 12 months. They explained how a return to normal life is their biggest wish:

  • Koshan, 8: “I’m so excited to be able to meet with all my friends and play football again.”

  • Zabiullah, 15: “I’m looking forward to seeing my grandparents and going on holiday.”

  • Abid, 10: “I am looking forward to having a big party with all my family members.”

  • Yusra, 10: “I’m completely fed up with the lockdown. I know it is here to help us but I want everything to get back to normal so I can go to restaurants and go shopping again.”

  • Sahar, 12: “The past year was very different but I am really looking forward to the new year, I am excited for summer.”

Abdul Bostani, GAU director, said: “The lives of families have been greatly impacted over the past year. As we reflect on the time that has passed and the lives sadly lost to coronavirus, we must also look to the future. Nowruz is a very important time that allows us to do just that.

“It can be difficult to stay positive during difficult times. GAU is working to support its members with online sessions and food deliveries to make it a little easier. Our online classes have helped children and young people stay connected with their friends and given them a sense of normality.

“They have shown tremendous strength and resilience through the last 12 months and their wishes for the new year show the things they value most – friends and family.

“We look forward to the day that we can all meet our family and friends in person again. If we stick together and follow the Scottish Government guidance, we will get through this.

“GAU would like to wish all those celebrating a happy, safe and healthy new year – Nowruz mubarak.”

We were very happy when the Glasgow Times newspaper decided to include a report on our young people and their reflections on Nowruz. We think they are all stars and deserve to shine in the newspaper – we are sure it won’t be the last time!

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