"He who teaches children, learns more than they do"
-- German Proverb
Rightly said. Shaishav as an organization has continuously learned from the children we got engaged with. Children has taught us the things which no books, academics and intellectuals have. Children ask questions that even a wise man cannot answer. We at Shaishav has always find way and means to fulfil their curiosity and unrelenting desire to learn new things.
Shaishav means a “Childhood”. It is an age of dreams, desires, energy and thoughts. It is our vision to create a society where each child achieves the potential they born with, and becomes an independent and socially responsible citizen. Shaishav started its work with children, particularly an underprivileged in the slums and outskirts of Bhavnagar. It was aimed to bring the best out of these children and fulfil their educational and vocational needs through activities and continuous engagement with them. Eventually, this engagement resulted in a “Balsena” collective of the children, for the children and by the children. Balsena was formally formed in 2004, inaugurated by renowned activist Ms.Elaben Bhatt. Since, then Balsena has evolved and more than 10000 children have been members of collective. The objective behind forming this collective was to ensure all the rights to children.
In January 2016, Shaishav organized a National Consultation for Children Collectives, a 4 days residential workshop in Ahmedabad, where 67 children and 38 child rights activists participated from 19 voluntary organizations from 10 states. Entire 4 days schedule was filled with various activities. Various leading child rights activists and academics gave an inaugural speeches and share their thoughts and experiences. This was followed by main events and sessions comprising motivational stories, fun filled activities and games. It was organized to bring all the collectives under one roof and develop the friendship and solidarity, to discuss and understand the prevailing situation in respect of the rights to children and identify the challenges.
National Consultation Objectives :
i) To learn and share about best practices of Children’s Collectives.
ii) To understand the process of strengthening the Children’s Collectives, its Leadership & Team Building process, structure and decision making processes.
iii) To learn how the process of Children’s Collectives impact lives of children, their families, Communities and society at large.
iv) To teach children to write about their history/ document the Process.
v) To understand how to sustain the process of Children’s Collectives when children grow older/move out.
It was proposed to create a network of these collectives to share the learnings and work towards policy advocacy for child participation and other issues related to child rights and child protection.
On 3rd and 10th January, 2016, Shaishav Balsena organized seminars for adolescent boys and girls in the campus of Vidyavihar School respectively. The former was presided by a veteran columnist and literate Prof. Gaurang Jani. The seminars saw the presence of 255 adolescent boys from 8 schools and 13 areas of Bhavnagar district along with 412 adolescent girls from 11 schools and 13 areas of Bhavnagar district respectively. The seminars provided training on safety and self-defense, online security and privacy, importance of role model, friendship and body mapping. The topics were emphasized using films and documentaries, group discussion and poster presentation. Our chief guest then provided scientific and biological perspective to the problems faced by our adolescents in daily life.
Balsena Divas (Annual function of Balsena) was organized on 27th December, 2015 at B.M. Commerce High School. The program included volunteers from 'Tera Mera Run' for the half marathon (21km), who have also raised funds through half marathon in 13 different cities. The volunteers showed their support in the rally for Child rights. The children were supposed to create various utility and creative items using inexpensive and easily available items. The afternoon session was held for parents of the children that included seminar on children education, rights of children, panchayati raj etc. in the presence of our esteemed guest Shri Rajeshbhai Bhatt, a senior activist and founder of SUPATH organisation in Ahmedabad. Moreover, all the 137 parents undertook a small exercise of rating their children's schools in terms of maintaining child friendly environment in the schools. The event would not have been successful without the able support of Shri Paresh Trivedi (Faculty, B.M. Commerce), helpline volunteers from Bhuj, Vadodara, Mandvi etc. and MSW volunteers from J.K. Ram College.
Apart from such exiting events, number of trainings and other activities were conducted for skill development and awareness generation of children. These activities included –
- Balsena team conducted child rights audit through children of community themselves to identify the areas and issues affecting child safety and child protection in their community areas and schools. About 1000 children participated for this.
- Trainings for self development, team work, child rights audit to be done in schools and community areas by children, craft, self defense (for girls specially). This had covered
- Moreover, children were carried out to visit local places of the city and learn about the same through this exposure visit.
- We conducted several trainings in tribal areas of Gujarat to generate awareness on the issues related to child rights and child protection. This includes Training of Trainers for partner organizations of UNICEF in Jambughoda, Ambaji and few other tribal areas of the state which benefited 68 participants of these organizations.
- Besides, the CRTRC (Child Rights Training Resource Center) team also organized workshops and seminars for students in rural area for awareness generation and leadership training which covered 1456 children.
- The CRTRC team also conducted trainings for children and adolescents about making creative things and energy efficient things at home like solar cooker which were participated by 125 girls and boys of different age group.
- Our community team conducted door to door visits in 20 community areas in order to collect data of non school going children, child labour (both school going as well as non school going), children engaged at minor age. Nevertheless the team also submitted a petition to the district collector about the issues of local areas.
- Our team working on the child help line conducted awareness generation meetings about child protection and child helpline service and covered 267 teachers, 395 parents and 10346 children of nearly 50 schools through this activity.
We thank you all for the persistent support and encouragement. Attachments: