Dream A Dream has made outstanding progress in scaling it’s programs. We started this year (April 2009) with a goal of expanding our programs to 2000 children. In eight months, we have reached out to 10 NGO partners impacting over 1494 children through regular life skills development programs. This includes 819 Boys and 675 Girls in our various life skills programs with an almost full attendance showing the tremendous interest. We have currently actively engaged over 648 community volunteers who have contributed over 6600 volunteer hours.
Rugby stars at Dream A Dream
Utilising sports as a medium to empower vulnerable children with life skills has been the core of Dream A Dream’s strategy since 2003. It gives us enormous pride to say that eleven children from the Dream Rugby program were selected in the state list to play for Karnataka in the State Under 16 Team. Subsequently 6 from the 11 boys have made it to the final list of players representing Karnataka.
As would be expected, the boys - Tamim, Yelappa, Nandish, Rakshith, Manja and Ranjith are excited. This opens up many opportunities for them. They could get selected to play for India! They would now get opportunities to compete with the best in the field and win many laurels. The factor that is most in favour of these boys is their age; the boys are 13 - 14 years old. This gives them a good two to three years time frame to improve and make it to the next level. Making it big seems an achievable target for these children from poor and vulnerable backgrounds!
Dream A Dream on a global platform
Dream A Dream’s project ‘Empowering Vulnerable Children through Life Skills’ has been short-listed for the final round of the Japenese Award for Most Innovative Development Project, as part of the Global Development Awards and Medals Competition. Over 200 submissions were received for this category and Dream A Dream is among the top three finalists. The final round of the competition will take place at GDN’s 11th Annual Global Development Conference to be held in Prague, Czech Republic from January 16th to 18th, 2010. Dream A Dream will be presenting the project proposal before an eminent jury for the final round.
A short anecdote
Hema is one of the children in a Learn IT batch (computer education) who has been a part of Dream A Dream programs for 2 years now. Anju Lavina, Dream A Dream Staff narrates her experience with Hema.
I have been observing Hema since she joined the Learn IT program last year. It’s encouraging to see the progress she has made. Her baseline evaluation showed low scores on all the life-skill parameters. Just 18-20 months into Dream A Dream programs, Hema has become assertive, takes initiative and developed a good understanding of the IT concepts being taught. Now she is the first to answer the questions. She leads the team in most team work and confidently makes presentations in the class.
Children and volunteers alike have been impacted by Dream A Dream programs. A few reflections from a volunteer and a child who have been a part of Dream A Dream programs.
“I really look forward to the mentoring program. Everyone thinks we are useless and rowdy. No adult has ever come to us and said we would like to be your friend. I feel happy when I think of that. Dream A Dream really cares for children like me.” ~ A child in the Dream Mentoring Program
“An example of how I love their spirit is one day the girls forgot the cones that they use as goal posts in the auto rickshaw. The kids didn’t even pause for a moment- they got coconut shells and played with those as goals instead. I also came across problems like the cows on the field that I would never ever imagine happening in the United States. We played around cows sometimes, which was kind of funny to me! Nothing kept these kids from playing, not even rain. One day it was pouring and we all got soaked, but we played anyway. They only get to play football three days a week, and they were so enthusiastic about it that I had to be enthusiastic as well! They played in the rain until a teacher came out and told them to come inside.” ~ Aisha, Volunteer
Finally, a BIG thank you from Dream A Dream to all of you for your support and belief in us. It means a lot to us and gives us the strength to stay focused on our vision.
We would like to hear from you about any questions and feedback you have. Please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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