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    juni 2023
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Be my guest # 116 Christmas Eve, Nuri Kino

Nuri gapskrattarNuri Kino. Journalist, author, film maker, enthusiast, activist – all in one. Also known as the founder and leader of the non profit organization A Demand For Action. Nuri himself prefers to  be called ”the handsome one”. To me he is the best of friends. Here he gives the readers a glimpse of one day in his life.

Pursued by contributions, a day with Nuri Kino

“Nuri, Syriac League doesn’t think we should hand out toys to the kids, it’s not going to happen.” Fahmi called me from Beirut. He had travelled from Södertälje to Lebanon to distribute toys to refugee children from Syria and Iraq during Christmas. But now our partners in Lebanon do not want to be involved anymore. We have worked with the project for a long time, collecting money in Sweden and the United States. I stopped Fahmi from talking, I got angry. What were Syriac League thinking and why didn’t he insist? We’ll be a disgrace; people will lose confidence in us. The management of monetary gifts is a very sensitive subject.

“If you will calm down I will explain. We’re going to buy winter clothes for the children instead. Jackets, pants, sweaters and scarfs, every child will get that in a package. It was the man who was selling the toys who suggested it, besides they had already gotten toys for presents and now the clothing manufacturer will help by selling us the garments for the wholesale price.”

I was able to breathe again. The project was saved and had even become better.

A few minutes later I was standing outside of the supermarket Coop in Södertälje. A woman whom I had worked with, caring for elders, years ago greeted me, gave me a hug and put something in my pocket. I was stunned by the tight hug and almost trampled on a poor Romanian beggar sitting outside the store. The woman disappeared. In my pocket she had left a note on a piece of paper: “Give this to the children. Send the money to where you think is best.” Inside the folded note were two 500 SEK bills. This woman was unemployed but still wanted to contribute 1.000 SEK to those in greater need..

I went home to get my workout clothes; I was in a hurry for a meeting at the gym.

“You’ve gotten 2.000 SEK for the refugee children.” My mother had been to a memorial service for a distant relative and her cousins had given her money because they also wanted to contribute. My God, I thought. I must immediately send the money from my personal account to A Demand For Action’s account. Panic grew inside of me, what might the Tax Agency say?

In the car on the way to the gym I called the Swedish Tax Agency, and had to wait for my turn, as always. I didn’t even know what I was going to ask, I just felt paranoid. I just don’t want to end up in some kind of trouble. The official at the tax office didn’t understand my question, he said that it is up to people themselves whether they wish to donate money for refugees or not. As long there are no official funds being handled.

Okay, so now I know. While I was waiting for my meeting I sat on the exercise bike, downloaded a radio documentary to have something to listen to, and started working out. Suddenly someone tapped me on my shoulder, took off my headphones and said: “You’re so annoying, causing us to argue with our wives, how much do you want to the refugee children?” He forwarded 500 SEK from his bank account by phone while we were talking.

My friend Erika walked in, very happy. She had been swimming for over an hour and was full of energy. We have been talking about possibly working together on an integration project for newly arrived refugees in Södertälje.

“I felt a little bad, so I sent you 1.000 SEK.” She had sent them to me personally, to my private account. I felt hunted, it was never ending. What if I  would be accused by somone of hiding money the money colleced for A Demand For Action in my own account. I immediately forwarded the money to the correct account.

While I was driving to Merit in Stockholm to sit in her office and write my traditional Christmas column for this blog, I received multiple text messages. My sister Maria had sent a lot of text messages to friends and relatives and now she forwarded all the replies to me. Beautiful, heart warming words, and more financial contributions.

Beneil Dariush, one of the best ain Mixes Martial Arts at MMS, sent a Facebook message and said that he also wants to contribute.

Merit wasn’t home so I to the clothing store across the street. I tried on some nice shirts, sweaters and jackets, pretty expensive ones. Suddenly the feeling of panic struck again: what if someone sees me shopping now, the day that I received so much money in contributions, in cash even? I walked out of the store with a bright red face.

It can’t be easy being Santa Claus…


in Jesus’ own language:

Edo d’Mauludo d’Moran brikho!

(Translated: May the Lord’s birth bring a Merry Christmas to you all!)


Texten på svenska.
© This blog and Nuri Kino.