Quotes From Beneficiaries (*names have been changed to protect privacy)
Raman* – “I lost both my parents in a span of one year. Now-a-days I am staying with my two siblings at my grandmother’s. I have other relatives but none of them are helping us. There was a time when I was worried for my education. But it was my fortune that my late parents had come in contact with Udayan Care which supported me for my education. Right now I am studying in class 12th and working hard to get good results, so that one day I will be standing on my feet. I love to attend the workshops conducted by Udayan Care. This organization helped me to come over the setback of my parents’ death and gave me the confidence to do better in education.”
Manav* – “My family belongs to Bihar but I was born and brought up in Delhi. My father is a driver and my mother is a housewife. Both are HIV positive. My father always falls sick and because of that he is not able to work for months which affects our family income. Due to this I was about to leave my study for good. But it felt like a rebirth when my family came in contact with Udayan Care’s programme for supporting children like me. Then I continued my studies without any interruption. I not only got the financial support but also the opportunity to attend the workshops. Here I have gained my self confidence and now-a-days I also try to mix-up with other children. Such motivational workshops have inspired me.”
Current Status of the Project
Currently Udayan Outreach Programme is providing financial support and counseling to 80 children and 67 families, out of which 60 children and 48 families are supported by you.
During this quarter, installments (financial support) were electronically distributed to all the children.
Confidence and Public Speaking Skills Building Exercises
(Workshop on 30 October 2011)
Public speaking is important for every people of all the age groups including children. It encourages confidence and enables people to express their point of view, which also helps them to become better communicators. However, if children are not forced to learn and recite, they are generally much more spontaneous speakers than adults. Given the chance, they can often express themselves more easily as well. But they do need training when it comes to the structure and presentation of speeches.
The Udayan Outreach Programme’s aim is helping these children to develop their personality through these monthly workshops. The special focus of this month was on the need for public speaking skills of the children. As these children have had minimum exposure to adopting and exercising public speaking skills and confidence building in their homes and school environment, so we encouraged our children to prepare stories, skits, and newspaper articles to share with the whole group. They participated in these activities wholeheartedly.
“I enjoyed these workshops a lot. I learnt so many new things, especially about my own talent in this quarter. Now I am confident to face the audience and taking part in school’s activites” – Maria*
Identifying and Encouraging Children’s Talents and Interests
(Workshop on 27 November 2011)
Supporting children's individual strengths is important for developing self esteem as well. This workshop was conducted keeping in mind that it is important for all parents to find the area or interest that is a talent for their individual child, as all children have some innate abilities and interests that are special and unique. It was emphasized that over time, by supporting these talents, they may be able to help your children acquire a life-long love of learning. The workshop proved to be a great bonding exercise between parents and children, who were only too happy to understand each other better! Parents learned to give attention to their children’s hobbies and interests, without losing sight of academics. On the other hand, children who were earlier too shy to share their thoughts with their parents, chose to speak up. As parents discovered the hidden talents of their children and appreciated them for who they are, the children realised they do not need to be shy about expressing themselves in front of their parents. Parents realised the benefits of letting their children pursue their interests as it can also enhance their career prospects.
Talking about her son’s interest in computers, Sumit’s* mother said, “I always encouraged him to join computer learning centre after school so that he can learn more and take it as a future prospect.”
Apart from the workshops, home visits were also made in this quarter. We found good involvement among parents and their children. Parents are providing every possible facility to the children within the limitation of the given fund in relation to education and nutrition. We also observed that these home visits help us to build up relationship with the families more closely. During our visit this time, the parents were much less hesitant to ask questions. At the same time, it also provided us a chance to know their health status.
All the girls have appeared in their respective 2nd semester examination of the academic year 2011-12 and going by their previous academic records all of them will do well. Most of the fellows, who are in final year are looking forward to pursuing higher studies. The brighter side is that the ones who will pursue higher education will support us as mentor in future, which will strengthen our mentoring programme.
On 9th Oct’11 a workshop on ‘Possibilitism: Exploring Possibilities’ was organised at Delhi : Mr. Ashish Aggarwal, a mentor and a Committee member introduced a fascinating new concept called ‘Possibilitism’. According to him, Possibilitism is all about how to make opportunities for ourselves or how best to take advantage of the opportunities that knocks on our door. Our Shalinis linked this concept immediately with their career and came up with various possibilities they could explore with their current qualifications that can lead them to good professions in future.
In the workshop of Mentors, all the girls got the opportunity to present their view points and not only their respective view points but also got to know each other’s view points. Workable/feasible/practical solutions were reached.
A small working group meetings were conducted by where the girls got to know how to overcome the weaknesses, value of self assessment, guidance on self assessment process. Not only this they also got to know that self assessment is necessary in order to overcome weaknesses
Fellows are utilising the money mainly in their coaching classes, books and some part in purchasing of stationeries etc.
Our Miracles of Hope:
Rajneesh’s parents got infected with HIV/AIDS one after the other. His father who was sick for a long time, eventually succumbed to his illness, leaving him and his mother behind. After the sad demise of his father, Rajneesh and his mother went to live with his paternal aunt, who works as a domestic help in households. The financial crisis in the family led Rajneesh and his mother to join the Udayan Outreach Programme, when he was in class 7. Since then, he has been performing quite well in his academics. Today, he is a very confident and intelligent boy who is going to appear for class 10 examination this year. He dreams of becoming a doctor and treating people infected with HIV/ AIDS.
It is the support that he has received from our Outreach programme that gives him confidence to pursue his dreams. The financial assistance given by this programme has also brought relief to his paternal aunt who has to take care of 3 other children besides Rajneesh. She has many hopes for Rajneesh and looks forward to the day when he will be capable enough to take care of the family on his own.
Neelam’s father passed away due to HIV/AIDS when she was in class 6. Neelam, who was always good at academics had to forego her studies due to her mother’s failing health and poor financial condition. In order to support her family, Neelam took up work as a domestic help in a household, earning a meager salary per month.
Just as Neelam was abandoning the idea of going to school forever, she came to know about Udayan Care’s Outreach programme. The program not only gave them hope for a better life but also gave Neelam courage to pursue her studies further. Neelam’s mother also encouraged her to continue her studies after receiving financial aid from our programme. Neelam has now passed Class 10 with excellent marks and dreams of becoming a teacher someday.
*Names changed to protect privacy rights
With financial assistance, the child beneficiaries under our Program receive an opportunity to improve their lives that have been affected by their parents’ illness and continued dwindling of monetary resources. They are now able to pay for their school fees, after-school tuitions and a nutritional diet only due to the aid that they receive from this program. As a result, their living conditions have improved and there is a huge sense of relief in the families.
The funds are now being electronically transferred to all the children every month.
Workshop in the month of July was divided into 2 separate groups, one for the parents and the other, for children. Discussion with parents consisted of an exchange on the importance of spending time with children. Our resource person, Mr. Sameer Pathak asked the parents to spend some quality time with their children on a daily basis, asking them about their studies and their social life in general. This was done to make the children feel cared for and loved by their parents.
They were also asked to keep a note of the areas in which their children required attention such as studies/ personal behavior etc. so that they can seek assistance from the Program team in coming at solutions.
The children’s workshop was held simultaneously by our resource person, Ms. Megha Garg who emphasized on personality development through team work. Age based activities were performed by the children wherein a few were expected to draw as per their wish while others were asked to develop an advertisement.
Thereafter, the group was informed about ‘Big Friend Little Friend Program’, another child-centric program being run by Udayan Care in which the children could participate and gain benefit from. They were informed about a fete - ‘Udayan Care Friendship Hungama 2011’ (UCFH 2011) that was being organized by Udayan Care on Friendship Day for the very first time to celebrate the spirit of friendship. The children were invited to attend the event along with their parents and experience a unique celebration of friendship.
The Big Friend Little Friend Program is a unique and first-of-its kind programme in India which facilitates a willing volunteer (Big Friend) to become an equal and supportive friend to a disadvantaged youngster (Little Friend) of the same sex.
For the next month, the children were given a topic for General Discussion (GD) and were asked to go through the newspapers regularly in order to prepare themselves for the same.
August saw another workshop of parents and children wherein our resource person, Mr. Sameer Pathak initiated a discussion with parents on the importance of leading a quality life. He brought hope into the group by informing them that a life well lived is thousand times better than a life lived without zeal. He encouraged the parents to lead a healthy and nutritious life so that they can live longer.
Our Resource person for the children’s workshop was Mr. Rashid, a social worker working in NGO, Sakshi. He related the importance of studying to children by sharing many real life examples with them. This generated a lot of interest amongst the group and all the children listened very attentively.
Since the session was interactive, the children also shared their problems related to academics besides sharing their achievements with Rashid.
Exclusive Invitation- Udayan Care Friendship Hungama 2011 (UCFH 2011)
Beneficiaries from our Outreach Program were cordially invited to participate in an Udayan Care Event that was organized under Big Friend Little Friend Program on Friendship Day in India. A Fete was organized at Tagore International School on 7th August to celebrate friendship between Big and Little friends. The event proved quite a memorable one for our beneficiaries where they took out a day to celebrate the spirit of friendship with one another.
Children from our program were paired up as Little Friends with adults who became their Big Friends for the day and sponsored their food and games. There were several game stall where our children participated and won prizes. They participated in dances and other competitions and received a lot of encouragement from their Big Friends.
Our children were extremely happy for being part of the event and they made the most of the day. These children who had always experienced discrimination and apathy from society at large, felt accepted for the first time in their life. There was a sudden increase in confidence as every child felt important and wanted.
The happiness that was very evident on their faces was as much a result of this interaction as due to the innumerable prizes that they won in the various games.
Moderators- Mohd. Faheem Khan and Ms. Megha Garg asked the parents and their children about their experiences of being a part of the event. The entire group expressed their joy and gratitude for giving them such a unique opportunity of interacting with society at large.
Thus, taking this experience forward, they discussed the importance of having friends in one’s life. Children themselves came up with such innovative ways to express their need of a friend. Many of them also conveyed that books are their best friends as it gives them complete knowledge on a variety of issues.
Name of the resource persons: Mr. Sameer Pathak, Ms. Megha Garg, Mr. Rashid & Mohd. Faheem Khan
1. July 2011
A. Importance of spending time with children on 31st July 2011
B. Personality Development through Team Work on 31st July 2011
The workshop was attended by 67 children and 42 parents.
2. August 2011
A. Leading quality life on 28th August 2011
B. Importance of Academics on 28th August 2011
The workshop was attended by 68 children and 48 parents.
3. September 2011
A. Importance of having friends in one’s life on 25th September 2011
The workshop was attended by 73 children and 53 parents.
Main Outcome: As a result of the discussion, there were many beneficiaries who were keen to have a friend in their life. We plan to provide these children with a Big Friends of their own soon.