In this year’s holiday campaign, we dive into all the joy a money transfer brings around the world. Behind each appearance in the video, there’s a story – just like every money transfer sent with Ria.
Near the end of the video, Anwar Mohammad, a business development manager at Ria, and his family make their appearance. Those 15 seconds aren’t nearly enough to capture what a money transfer means. He lives 8,000 miles away in Texas, and his transfers to India are helping his family finish the home that his late father started four years ago.
This is Anwar’s story.
Defying the odds of opportunity
“Work hard, dream big.” – Anwar, 2020
That’s exactly what Anwar did when growing up in the small village of Chhaleri Kalan in Punjab, India. Despite not having access to many opportunities he created a bright future for himself. Anwar believes that if he can do it, everyone can.
His journey began learning business logistics and vendor relations while working for his late father’s agriculture business. His dad then pushed him to go to college, just like Anwar’s older brother before him and now, his younger brother, who is currently studying in Cyprus.
His commute to college was long, but it was worth it. He believes studying – especially in India – is the key to being successful.
He describes: “I used to wake up at 6 a.m. to do chores, then leave by 7 a.m., then walk three miles to catch the bus to college. But I didn’t give up. Cold or hot, I went. I told myself that I’m the one who signed up for this, so I have to complete this.”
His sacrifice didn’t end there, though. After college, he made the tough decision to leave Chhaleri Kalan to live in Chandigarh to open an electronic repair business with his friends. His dad wanted him to stay, but Anwar knew he needed to do this to create a better life for himself.
This cultural and constant desire to make his family happy in India is something that Anwar believes can hold people back. Getting away and learning about new cultures and people in college helped him realize that he couldn’t always please his family.
Eventually, his dad – after some convincing from his mom – came around to the idea.
Taking another leap of faith by moving to the United States
“Life is about taking risks to achieve your dreams.” – Anwar, 2020
In 2018, Anwar, his wife – a whirlwind of a romance that deserves a separate post in itself – and their dog, Abhi, realized that they’d need to leave India to pursue their dreams, they took another leap of faith. They moved to the United States.
Once again, Anwar worked hard to achieve greatness. He quickly landed a job as a Business Development Manager at Ria thanks to his experience in business and his talent for forming lasting relationships. He was promoted in November 2019 and now specializes in expanding business from the US to South Asia on the west coast. He didn’t know anyone besides his wife when he moved here, but now he has friends in 15 states because of everyone he meets on business trips.
“I’m blessed to work with my own people and grow with Ria,” he explains.
Although he misses sarson da saag and makki di roti, a Punjabi dish his mom has perfected, friends, and especially his family, he believes he’s found opportunities in the US that were not available to him in India at the time.
What a money transfer means to Anwar and his family
“It’s a blessing to be connected.” – Anwar, 2020
Throughout the years, Anwar used the opportunity to work abroad to give back to his family back home. Years ago, Anwar’s father and started to build a house, but he sadly passed away in 2017 and construction was put on hold. Now, thanks to Anwar’s hard work, construction is back on track, and the house is expected to be completed in March 2021!
“I can’t wait to go back and see my home,” he says.
For Anwar, it’s important his family grows with him. And it’s a money transfer that allows them all to grow together and live comfortably.
He explains: “I live 8,000 miles away. I can’t be there physically, but I can be there in another way.”
And this is true beyond financing the home. There’s an extended family wedding coming up, and he can still be there in spirit by sending a transfer to help them celebrate. It’s his way of staying connected to his loved ones.
Just like Anwar, we hope a money transfer helps you feel connected too. A transfer doesn’t just allow loved ones to buy something; it allows friends and family to live and enjoy life.
This month, it’s even easier to spread joy to those you love. It’s $0 fee December, because we know that giving a little goes a long way. It’s the least we can do.
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