Children
 India
Project #6625

Orphans of Tamil Nadu need our help!

by Blossom Trust
Vetted
Swimming in the sea
Swimming in the sea

Hello! Since our last update, the kids at Dayspring Home have had a number of adventures. Anita, Anne-Françoise and Arnaud, volunteers from France, have been enriching the lives of those at Dayspring through education and fun! Read on to find out what they've been up to.

English Classes

We first organized a test in order to split the kids into groups by level of English known. We broke the kids up into three groups: Beginners taught by Anita; Intermediate taught by myself; and Advanced taught by Arnaud. We try to stick to daily classes but sometimes have to cancel due to their work load (school work plus daily tasks at Dayspring keep them busy). We find it most beneficial to the kids if we help them with their English homework rather than add more work with our English classes.

Dayspring Olympiads

On Saturday, June 11 we organized Dayspring Olympiads. The kids were split up into three different teams and competed both with and against each other in five different games. These included ring toss, a couple different relays and a final race at the end. We bought some medals for the kids and they were so happy to get them. 

Kanyakumari

We also planned and funded a full day of activities for the kids at Dayspring. On June 17, we all headed to Kanyakumari in order to be there in time for sunrise. When we got there, we headed to the beach to put our toes in the sand and wait for the sunrise. After sunrise, we drove an hour with loud music and a lot of dancing before reaching the Padmanabhapuram Palace. We visited the Palace and the heritage museum. After lunch we returned to Kanyakumari to visit Ghandi's Memorial and treat the kids to ice creams! They also had fun on the playground adjacent to the Memorial. Last, but not least, Anita and the older kids enjoyed a bath in the ocean! That was everyone's favourite part of the day.

English Homework
English Homework
Dayspring Olympiads
Dayspring Olympiads

Links:

Dayspring Children Enjoying the Waterfall
Dayspring Children Enjoying the Waterfall

Hello there! Since our last update a lot has happened at Dayspring. Thanks to you, and all of our supporters, we created a recycling program to make Dayspring a cleaner place!

Now the rubbish is sorted, sold, and recycled, so it does not contaminate the children’s environment. Recycling bins have been placed all around Dayspring, and the kids are getting used to them, as they understand this change is motivated by their well-being (burning rubbish can be really bad for the health!).

We’ve also been able to start a computer class programme for the kids! Thanks to the hard work of the volunteers and the support from our donators all around the world, Dayspring home now has its own computer lab. We are able to teach groups of 4-5 at a time the basics of computer usage. So far one group has finished the course and another one is in the middle of it. We hope to expend this program to be able to reach our dream goal: every child leaving Dayspring with computer fluency and able to face the modern world ahead. It’s an ambitious objective but we know that with hard work and dedication, we can make it a reality!

Since the last update in December the kids have also been on several field trips. In January they went to Madurai to see the temples and in February they went to see the waterfalls of Kutralam, spending the weekend enjoying the water and the change of scenery from Chittor.

We will keep you informed of the progress of our programmes at Dayspring, and again thank you for supporting us.

The New Computer Classroom at Dayspring
The New Computer Classroom at Dayspring
Christmas Cake for All
Christmas Cake for All

Christmas is typically a day to be spent with family and that is true at Blossom, it just happens that our family here includes at least fifty people! The function wasn’t just a one day thing, for over a week preparations had been going on in the form of decorations being made and hung up, a nativity scene and the dances that the children had been practising to make sure they were perfect on the night.

The beautiful rangoli, chalk designs on the ground, greeted all the guests as the entered Dayspring, from outside the gate to the entrance to the veranda, their vibrant colours were mixed with seasonal greetings and the strings of lights hanging down made it very clear that festivities were waiting, as did the Christmas songs playing in the classroom: where all the children were eagerly awaiting their party, in their best clothes.

Their joy, only increased when the cake was uncovered and the little ones learnt that they were to get the first tastes! Scrambling to get to the table as quickly as possible and be the first in line they were richly rewarded with large pieces, some of them trying to get back for more.

Then the Dayspring children got to show off the wonderful dances they had choreographed. Dressed up in their finest and covered in jewellery that only comes out for special occasions the girls whirled and span like Bollywood starlets.

A speech of thanks by CEPT Project Co-ordinator P. Jothi, was followed by a special meal for all: biriyani, and more cake! On a day like today it is hard to look at the Dayspring children and think of the hardships they have been through, losing their families one way or another; but today was a day of joy for all of us involved and while at other times it may not be as easy for them to forget, at least at Christmas we can give them new happier memories to hold on to.

Thank you to all our our generous friends for helping to make the day so special for the children of Dayspring, we juat wish everyday could be filled with so much joy.

Christmas Rangoli
Christmas Rangoli
Waiting for Father Christmas
Waiting for Father Christmas
Father Christmas Arrives!
Father Christmas Arrives!
The Dayspring Girls Love to Dance
The Dayspring Girls Love to Dance

We celebrated Diwali at Dayspring! And festivities abounded. The kids stayed home from school and instead of farm work or homework we all were treated to two days of feasting and fun. On the first day we had a special breakfast on banana leaves-- flavored rice and curries and chutney and sweets for breakfast! And as soon as breakfast finished every kid got a brand new Diwali outfit. The girls got beautiful saris and shawls and the boys got dress shirts and khaki pants or shorts. There was also plenty of bangles and costume jewelry and plaited hair. The kids new finery put us volunteers to shame! There were more sweets before lunch and a mini cricket match. and already in the morning the first firecrackers were set off.

After a special lunch (biryani! chicken curry! more sweets!) we settled into for movie time or else spent time with the staff and friends who visited from the Blossom office. We looked around the farm and found a snake! Some children had parents visiting today.

In the evening, as it got dark, the real festivities began. I had never seen so many kids with so many fireworks. There were handheld sparklers, there were rockets, there were tubes that made a horrible shrieking sound when set off. Then there were cones that let out a huge waterfall of silver sparks, and sometimes had blue and red balls shooting out as well. And the spinning disks that sprayed silver sparks all over everyone's feet. And just when one box seemed to be running out another new type of firecracker would appear from the bottom of someone's bag. If you went on the roof terrace you could see the real large fireworks being set off in villages in all directions. It was the true spirit of Diwali!

The next days the holiday continued. We had a special breakfast of Poori that the girls helped to make. and everyone changed into their new fine clothes for the meal. In addition to being a holiday it was Charles's birthday so along with the special and delicious food we were eating all day there were sweets and cake! We had more movie time and the volunteers and the kids played games before dinner. Some people took care of the animals as well. they need to eat too! In the evening there were big rains and a big storm but we could still play snakes and ladders by torchlight. No one wanted to go to sleep-- but in the morning the kids would get dressed in their finery again and show off their new clothes at school.

It was a great Diwali. so many treats! and so much fun to spend it around the smiling laughing kids.

 

Danabal immersed into the screen
Danabal immersed into the screen

I arrived at Blossom Trust with two donated laptops, excited to start Dayspring Computer Class to teach the older children at Dayspring Home basic computer skills, so that when they have to leave the home for further education or to work they will be ready.

In the class we are teaching the oldest six children at the home OpenOffice Writer, Calc and Impress (open-source equivalent of MS Word, Excel and Powerpoint) as well as how to use the internet for searches, email and job hunting. We really want to make sure that they can get the most out of their laptops, not just see them as toys!  

There are only two laptops for them to share but as we are having three or four classes each week the children are getting quite a lot of time on the computers. Each class is volunteer run, with one of us conducting the lessons and another two helping the children as they take turns to practise on the computer.

The children are progressing really quickly and are ready for their first project, a one-page profile about themselves using OpenOffice Writer, they love getting the chance to use technology and are really looking forward to when we can get the funds to bring the internet to Dayspring.

We know the children need as much practice as possible with the laptops so we want to give them extra supervised time to learn and many of the younger children are really eager to learn too, so we’re looking at how we can create an extra class. 

Third day of class
Third day of class
"We can still practice typing on the old keyboard"
"We can still practice typing on the old keyboard"
 

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Organization Information

Blossom Trust

Location: VIRUDHUNAGAR, TAMILNADU - India
Website: http:/​/​www.blossomtrust.org.in
Project Leader:
MERCY ANNAPOORNI
Virudhunagar District, Tamil Nadu India

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