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Sharing With Gurais Traditional Pakistani Dinner set for July 25

It is time for the fifth annual Sharing With Gurais Traditional Pakistani Dinner, which will be held Wednesday, July 25, at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church.

In 2008, the Pagosa Springs Town Council signed a proclamation recognizing the Gurais Valley of Pakistan as our Sister Community in Pakistan.

The Gurais and the Upper San Juan Valleys have similar topography. Both are small, mountainous communities nestled in valleys that form the headwaters of a major river. They differ in that the Gurais Valley is extremely isolated, snow-bound six months a year and has no central electric system, telephone service or medical facilities.

During the past four years, Pagosans and their partner Pakistani organization, Pakistan Relief, have completed several projects that promote better understanding of Pakistani and American cultures.

To help meet the need for medical assistance in the Gurais Valley, 10 young ladies are receiving basic instruction in midwifery.

One of the young ladies, Nasira Mustafa, has just gained admission into a formal midwifery training program leading to certification. This is a landmark occasion because Nasira will have to go against local tradition and live in a city distant from her home for this training. She will likely become the first resident healthcare provider in the Gurais Valley.

This year, a new computer center was established at Pakistan Relief’s office in Islamabad. In addition to traditional men’s and women’s classes, this center is offering training to handicapped students.

Part of the funding for these humanitarian aid programs comes from the annual Sharing With Gurais Traditional Pakistani Dinner.

Doors open at 5 p.m. Dinner service starts at 5:30.

Guests are encouraged to arrive early because seating is limited and there are no reservations.

Donations will be requested to cover the cost of the dinner and to support projects in the Gurais Valley. Two hand-knotted carpets made in Pakistan will be available for purchase.

For more information, call 264-6647.

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