Noah quickly hid his money box under the bed.
“Are you okay Noah?” said his big sister Salma, as she stood at the doorway.
Yes yes. I’m fine. Noah snapped.
Salma was confused. What was Noah up to she wondered?!
Mum was calling them to dinner, so Salma quickly rushed downstairs forgetting all about what had happened.
Noah, let out a big sigh of relief! Ahhh
He was trying to collect money for charity, it was for a good cause, He had heard Uncle Amin, imam of the mosque say they only need 100 pounds more for the school to open. It was a school for Syrian children. These children left their country because of the war and Noah wanted to help them. The school was supposed to open in November so he needed to collect all the money before then!
Now Noah knew he really shouldn’t take money from his Dad’s wallet but how else was he going to help the children to go to school? Everyday he would take money from someone else’s wallet, one day it was his Dad’s, then his sister’s and the next day it would be mums, and finally Grandpa.
A little money every day didn’t hurt and surely it was okay.
His family would be happy they helped the Syrian children in the end! He was sure of it!
Noah still couldn’t help feeling a knot in his stomach every day when he sneaked the money into his bedroom though.
At that thought he quickly hid his money box under his bed and ran downstairs.
“Come on, hurry” Mum said. “Where have you been?”
“Err..I just had some school homework to finish off,” Noah lied.
“I thought you didn’t get homework until Friday?”
“Err, yes but Miss Foster gave us some work this week.” Noah felt his cheeks might give away his lies.
Stop lying a voice in his head snapped!
Another voice said, it’s okay, it’s for a good cause!
“Noah! stop staring at your dinner and eat up” Mum shouted.
Salma looked at him from across the table, it made Noah feel uncomfortable.
He tried to eat but the food wouldn’t go down properly. His stomach was in knots. It’s hard to eat when you’re keeping an important secret
After mum said he could go, noah sneaked up to his room and closed the door behind him. He leaned over to take out the money from under his bed – it was time to count.
“1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6..” Noah counted his money carefully writing down the numbers every so often so he didn’t forget.
All of a sudden he heard his Dad call from downstairs, “Salma! have you taken money from my wallet?!”
Noah froze and stopped counting.
Salma replied from her bedroom next door! “No Pappa” of course not. How could I take money from your wallet without asking you?!”
“That’s odd he said..”
“I specifically put 5 pounds in my wallet to give to Laura the cleaner – she’s coming any minute now.”
“You know I felt I was missing some money too.” Mum replied.
“Maybe the cleaner is taking money, we better watch her.”
Noah listened carefully. He felt absolutely terrible. He hoped they wouldn’t get the cleaner into trouble. Laura was such a nice lady, she was so warm and kind, why would she ever do such a thing?!
A moment later the doorbell rang and Noah’s friend Adam was at the door.
Noah heard Adam ask his mum..
“Can Noah play, Mrs Mohammed?”
“Oh, I’m afraid Noah has been very busy with his homework. He is upstairs in his room.” She replied
Oh no! Noah thought, Adam who was in Noah’s class knew they didn’t get any homework. He hoped Adam wouldn’t say anything…
“But mrs mohammad, Adam said.
“We didn’t get our homework yet!”
Noah closed his eyes. He felt so bad. He didn’t like telling so many lies and he wondered what his mum was thinking!
He raced down the stairs quickly forgetting all about his money box!
“Salaam Adam” said Noah, “let’s play outside!” He dragged Adam out with him.
“I’ll speak to you after you’re done playing” Mum said.
” Don’t be too long now, you’ve got school tomorrow!”
“Okay, Ma!” Noah said, popping his head around the door avoiding looking at mum.
Laura the cleaner arrived and asked Mrs Mohammad where she can she start cleaning.
Noah’s mum said she could start cleaning Noah’s room since he was out playing.
A few moments later Laura appeared, She looked a bit confused.
“Are you okay Laura?” asked Mrs Mohammed.
“Yes I’m fine, but I just wanted to give you this money, because it was spread all over Noah’s bedroom floor.”
Mrs Mohammed looked confused.
“Oh! Thank you Laura.”
Mrs mohammad looked at Noahs dad, “I think we need to call Noah inside.”
Noah’s mum and dad called Noah in and asked him to sit down.
“Why do I have to come back in so early anyway?! Noah complained.
“It’s not fair!”
Mum looked cross. “Sit down please Noah. I’d like you to explain where this money came from and why it was all over your bedroom floor!”
Noah’s heart began to race, his cheeks burned bright. He didn’t know what to say.
“I’ve been collecting money for the Imam, he said the Syrian children need 100 pounds for their school to open!” He stumbled.
Mum and Dad listened.
“But where is all this money coming from Noah?!” Dad asked.
Noah fell silent.
“Have you been taking money from my wallet asked Dad?!”
Noah hesitantly nodded.
“In fact you’ve been taking money from everyone in this house!”
“Do you think that’s the right thing to do Noah??” Asked Mum.
Noah shrugged his shoulders “But it’s for the children he whispered.”
Tears rolled down Noah’s cheeks.
“I’m sorry”, he said. “I’m very sorry!”
Mum and Dad stayed silent.
“Please go up to your room and take some time to think about what you’ve done. We’ll talk about this later.”
Noah felt sad but he also felt cross because he really wanted the money for the Syrian children why didn’t they understand how important this is!
A short while later Mum and Dad went up to Noah’s room and asked him to put on his clothes.
Dad was going to take him somewhere important.
Noah was confused, he didn’t feel like going anywhere but he put on his clothes and accompanied Dad.
They arrived at the mosque, it was Maghrib time and Dad held Noah by the hand and walked him towards Mr Ameen the imam of the mosque.
“Assalamu alaikum Mr Ameen”, said dad.
“Walaikum assalam” the imam replied with a smile, he patted Noah’s head.
“Mr Ameen”, said Noah’s Dad. “We’ve come today because Noah my son would like to donate 100 pounds towards the Syrian school.”
Noah gasped! He was shocked.
Where was baba going to get all the money from?!
“Noah has been trying to collect money for a while and today I decided to help him.”
Noah felt so happy.
“Thank you Dad!”
Noah hugged his dad and the imam was delighted.
The imam made an announcement after the prayer was over that Noah had donated 100 pounds to the Syrian school.
Everybody patted Noah on the head and made a prayer for him.
Noah felt so proud and thanked Allah.
As they made their way back home Noah said, “Dad, do you forgive me?”
“I do forgive you Noah, and I hope you will learn your lesson never to take anything that doesn’t belong to you, even if it is for a good cause! Do you promise?”
“I promise!” Replied Noah
– Thank you for listening
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