Engaging our children during tough times
The coronavirus pandemic has rattled the world and suddenly our routines have come to a pause. While adults find ways to engage themselves during this lockdown such as working from home, assignments, chores, workout, Netflix, etc., it is a challenge for children to stay indoors (in this case, 17 days) and keep them engaged especially without friends.
Amidst the chaos, our volunteers found a way to adapt and engage the children from shelter homes to a fun-filled virtual event - Nakashtra Online, a festival of recognizing talents through arts and activities conducted via Zoom or Hangouts app. 53 children from seven centres in Pune participated across events such as storytelling, elocution, recitation, singing, etc which took place for 4.5 hours. The operations team guided the children and helped in setting up the app and managed the entire session of Zoom on the day of the event. The winning homes are Sumati, Sneh Foundation, SSS Wadgaonsheri, Matruchaya Dighi, and Arise.
The team supported with efforts such as event rules book, judging criteria and promotional messages, and posters for getting volunteers as well as raising funds.
We have now been conducting Nakshatra online every week on a larger scale where 200 children from 65 shelter homes participated across 10 cities such as Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Pune, Mumbai, Kolkata, Trichy, Nagaland, Manipur, Assam with the help and engagement of 50 volunteers.
The feedback received from the stakeholders was that this gave an opportunity for everyone to sit through and watch the performances, unlike at an on-ground Nakshatra where the teams split up and are occupied amongst the assigned teams.
“The concept was astounding, and a huge shout out goes to all the volunteers and team for proactively communicating and coordinating till D-Day. We hope to pave more such opportunities on a wider scope engaging more children, volunteers, and shelter homes. This event is a blessing in disguise for the kids to overcome the stress of the lockdown, our children really enjoyed this. They did not have any stage of fear or crowd fear and participated in the event with more confidence. We look forward to taking part in the other events also but expecting communication in advance.” - Sarala, Centre Management (Arun Rainbow Home, Chetpet)
"In the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity" — Sun Tsu
Volunteers from across India coming together