Plz find below the wonderful experiences shared by one of our volunteers Ameetha... Special thanks to our beautiful volunteer Geeta for playing the role of typist. ;-) (Ameetha doesn't have PC at her home and so she wrote this essay on a paper & Geeta took the pains for converting it into the digital form for all of us.. Two snaps-links are included within the report... ;-)
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From: geeta kadam
Date: Sun, Jul 10, 2011 at 11:10 PM
Subject: Fantastic visit to Anugrah and Lavhali
To: Rupesh Gesota firstname.lastname@example.org
I decided on Sat 3'rd July to go with Rupesh to Lavhali Village in Badalapur. I decided to take a car so that we could carry the moulds and nutritional powder for the children. Rupesh always wanted me to visit Anugrah, home for children at Ambernath but that day we decided we will go straight to Lavhali as Rupesh had to return by 3.00 for an imp. meeting; but it seems there was a great pull ;-) As we were passing Ambernath and Anugrah on the way i felt like just dropping in for first 10 min and just see the kids and meet Dr Ila Paul. Rupesh and i decided to do that and when we entered Anugrah Dr Ila met us on way to school.
She asked us to join to join us to visit their school - Anugrah Vidya Mandir with 4-5 classrooms for all grades. I am telling you friends looking at the little kids, I could not resist urge to tell them a story that I had prepared " Chena and Mena". It was a beautiful story with great illustration of the elephant and the pumpkin.
As I narrated the story, the children responded so well, though little, they had so much intellect and enthusiasm and span attention. I taught them concept of beautiful, fat, small big, long short etc. The kids giggled and enjoyed.
I also showed them a colorful pop-up book about beautiful garden, puppies flowers, snails having raced crows catching worms ants carrying leaves dogs burying a bone, frogs swimming, bird feeding her chicks. Oh My God !! Their facial expressions and joy has been captured by Rupesh. Do check the snaps.We were just amazed by their learning zeal.
We then went to the higher classes. there I played a creative games of "Do this" and "Do that" game that got them to shed shyness become alert and focused and have fun.
I also got the boys and girls to conduct the game themselves to instil leadership quality and confidence. Through that game I tried to impart some skills. The students enjoyed and found it refreshing from their academic routine.
After interacting with the students we interacted with Dr.Ila and learned a lot from her about the working of her organization and about her challenges & her strategies. She also told us couple of personal inspirational stories about herself and work that really motivated Rupesh and me. It enriched us. We were there for about two hours so you could imagine how engrossed we were and happy to be there.
After Ambernath, we picked up Subhash Gowarikar sir at Badalapur and proceed to Lavhali with our volunteer Sunita. Subhash sir was going to teach kids clay modelling.
We reached Lavhali at about 2pm and were just surprised to see the now-almost-completed community hall of this village. Rupesh was in high spirits on finding this and then even went full-on voicing out his big dreams for the village kids -- computer center, library, fun-center, etc. He and Sunita zipped away into the village to gather the younger kids and then I showed them the ‘Popup book’. They were very fascinated. Meanwhile, Rupesh had already disappeared out of the village. Wish, he could witness the fun unleashed...
I then got the elder students to handle that book because it needed hand coordination to make the objects move. They were shy but soon couple of them came out and tried and I encouraged them to speak out aloud and they picked up some English verbs like swimming, carrying, feeding eating, flying etc
When Subhash sir’s session of clay modelling started with the kids they made a lot of things out of their imagination and creativity. They focused and were proud to display their creations. They were happy and joyful to create with their hands It was a great learning experience for them. I felt such hands on learning help them to develop life skills that cannot be explained by text book alone.
The girls there at Lavhali would need a lot of interactive activities and learning games to pick up the language.
Sunita and Subhash sir too interacted with the students in Marathi so well and taught their own set of values to the students.
On the whole it was a very soul satisfying awesome day spent. I felt good and peaceful that even it was just a trickle in the ocean I could contribute something.
I look forward contributing more for joyful learning of the kids at the LEAD foundation. Thank you Rupesh and god bless all the volunteers. You guys are doing a stupendous job.
At the clay modelling session there was a boy who made a wonderful mask ( like Alian ), My God! It was so creative. The kid also made hand fists using tools to carve out the shapes.
There was also a child Deepak, I met who was dumb and deaf (Rupesh told me that we are working on his rehabilitation) and he was so excited to create and show it to me. It really touched my heart and I realized Subhash sir’s clay modelling had added a zing to his life.
It is commendable to do these little acts of kindness. Keep it up LEAD!!
Thanks & Regards