The internet can be a cruel place sometimes but that isn’t always the case because there are some amazing people in the world too. The story that I am about to tell shows both the good and bad side of the internet, namely social media and what it is capable of. It is amazing how one simple picture can spark such a response from people all around the world but that is exactly what happened this year to a Saudi Arabian cleaner who got caught up in something that he did not expect. When an anonymous troll set out to embarrass the man, so many people stepped up to prove that the world CAN be a good place and great things happen to those who deserve it.
How did this story start?
You know that this is a story of goodwill, so let’s look at where and how it started. An anonymous Instagram account posted a picture of a disheveled looking man staring longingly at a jewelry display in an expensive looking store.
The man was a cleaner – he had a long beard, old clothes and judging from his appearance – did not have very much in life. Unfortunately the person who posted the sad photograph was not supporting this man and his dreams for a wealthier life, he was mocking him by writing in the caption “This man deserves to look at trash only.“
Quite a horrible statement I think you will agree and one that not many people would agree with. This is an example of social media at its worst but luckily, the good came out in forces on this occasion after they were horrified at what they read.
A Twitter user known as “ensaneyat” is the person who started the gesture of kindness after he spotted the picture and wanted justice for the man after the disrespectful caption that was attached to the image. He posted the photo on his own social media accounts in an attempt to find the cleaner, to learn a little more about his life and possibly help him. “Peace and blessings upon you all, I urge those who know this worker to get in touch with me. I have a free set of gold jewelry for him.” is what he wrote and it didn’t take long for other offers of kindness to come his way.
Many other people offered jewelry and even money if he was successfully able to find the man and that happened after just a short amount of time. Social media can be such a powerful tool in tracking people down thanks to the wide audience that it reaches and this was the same on this occasion.
What happened next?
Somebody posted a more clear photograph of the cleaner in his work uniform and the full identity of the gentleman soon emerged and was publicized on social media. The man’s name was Abdul Karim and it was discovered that he had been working his job in Riyadh for 11 years and just like expected, he was barely getting by in life on his small paid job. The man had no idea that a photo had been taken of him, nevertheless that he had actually reached a worldwide audience of people wanting to help him. When the jewelry store that he was caught looking into was contacted, something even more heartbreaking was found out about the Abdul Karim. The photograph was not just a one off taken at the opportune moment, it was a regular occurrence. The staff said that he would stare into the window at the amazing jewelry every single day. He would never say a word when approached, he would just go on his way and get on with his job. The fact that he always returned however just shows how much he yearned for a little bit of sparkle in his life.
After this all went viral, the jewelry store themselves gave Abdul Karim one of the sets that he had always admired which is such a decent thing to do and Abdul Karim simply could not believe his luck. In addition, to that the original man who made this all possible gave Karim the jewelry that he promised when he first started his search for the cleaner. The other well wishers who were touched by the story also gave what they could to Karim and he could not be grateful enough. It is not known exactly how the cleaner is doing right now but from all the gifts/money that was given to him by thoughtful strangers, let’s hope that he is much more content in his life. One thing is for sure, he doesn’t need to look into that window longingly anymore because he has the most beautiful jewelry set in his possession.
I think you will agree that this amazing story proves that there is still good in the world for those less fortunate. It also shows that it is OK to dream and sometimes that dream might just become a reality from the sheer human nature of others. There really is a lesson in this for everyone, no matter what your situation is in life. Next time you see a situation where you can give just a little something back to society, think of this story and do the right thing. It doesn’t have to be even by giving money if you cannot afford to, some kind words can actually go a long way. If there is such thing as Karma, you will be repaid in years to come and the person you are helping will always remember your generosity. The world would be a happier place if everybody had the same amount of money/possessions but unfortunately, that is not the case. It’s sad to think of all the similar type of things like this story that go on around the world on a daily basis but Karim is a man who has benefited from the generosity of strangers and others can too. Be a little kinder to those around you and you could be helping much more than you even realize.