Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes

by Udayan Care
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Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Support orphaned children at our Sunshine Homes
Children standing tall and proud
Children standing tall and proud

Love and Greetings from Sunshine Homes!

Hello friends! This is Ravinder again, heading the Sunshine Homes at Udayan Care. Hope you all are safe and keeping healthy. I also hope that you all have got your vaccination.

The time indeed, has been difficult but also blessed for us. Team Sunshine Homes has once again worked rigorously and successfully curbed the pandemic outbreak. India being one of the few countries worse affected by the ferocious second wave of COVID pandemic, we at Sunshine Homes kept ourselves prepared, strong and battled hard for our safety and survival. With first positive case in April’21 at one of the Homes, the virus continued to infect several others in different Homes. In the first week of June’21, a total of 32 COVID positive cases were there in the Sunshine Homes. Out of this, 20 were children, 10 were care staff and the remaining 2 were aftercare young adults. By the end of June’21, Sunshine Homes had 0 positive cases and with all team’s efforts and prayers of our supporters and well-wishers we continue to be all safe and healthy.

The team Sunshine Homes simultaneously also worked towards getting its team members and aftercare young adults vaccinated. So far, 71 ground staff out of 79 and 35 young adults out of 47 have been partially and fully vaccinated. The remaining members have booked their slots and shall be vaccinated by October’21.

Well! This has all been about preventing and managing COVID pandemic. During the period we have also been able to organize various capacity building workshops for all our stakeholders and engaged the children in many fun and learning activities. Let’s have a look at some of the activities we did during the reporting period –

World Environment Day

Conscience towards the environment was instilled in the children as they engaged in activities such as best out of waste, planting saplings, engaging in theatre to spread the message of conserving Mother Earth. Some of the children also watch a movie showcasing the relation between man and tree. Through the narrative children were motivated to take their sensitivity towards environment protection to the next level.

International Yoga Day

The global trend of staying healthy and rejuvenated is the motive of each individual in today’s world. Yoga comes as one which not only ensures physical fitness but also address the growing mental health concerns during the pandemic. As part of their routine children practice Yoga each morning. On 21st June they made it even more special sending out the message of fitness, mindfulness and a relaxed mind as key to well-being.

Independence Day Celebration

Reflecting the patriotic spirit and immersing in the colors of freedom and creativity, children and staff across Sunshine Homes celebrated the Indian Independence Day on 15th August. From engaging in drawing, flag hoisting and fun games, the celebration was at its peak with the Sunshine Homes Cookery Competition. While the team got into the creative spirit, the dishes reflected the tricolor while enriching everyone with their mouthwatering dishes. The day culminated in the entire Sunshine Home teams appreciating the dishes and enjoying the virtual treat.

Happiness Workshop

Optimism, focus and being thankful in life are some of the core ingredients towards happiness. The workshop conducted by Neeraj, renowned motivational speaker and photographer at the Times of India in association with Art of Living, enabled children to develop a sense of gratitude, incorporate the spirit of meditation and living in the present as the path to a successful life.

Virtual Teachers’ Day Celebration

To honour the support from our eminent educators over the years, on 5th September 2021, Teacher’s Day was celebrated online where children, staff and mentor parents came together to felicitate and acknowledge the efforts of all teachers who have overcome the challenges of online classes. The event graced by eminent guest Gowri, recipient of the Padma Shree Award, encouraged the children to consider education as a medium to soar high and fly. The event also marked the beginning of our series of “Inspiring Idols” where children through skit, song, dance and oration reflected on education as a valuable treasure which a teacher can provide to their students. The online gathering was made grandeur with the presence of principals, directors and head of schools encouraging the children and admiring the tribute to the teaching fraternity. The children poured their hearts out with “Thank You” messages for the eminent guests for being the agents of change for a better tomorrow. The celebrations culminated with the children along with the Mentor Parents felicitating the guests with thoughtful citations making it a memorable evening.

Effective Caregiving; A virtual training programme for caregiving staff at Sunshine Homes

During the difficult times of the Corona Virus Pandemic, the people who have been constant figures to the children to sail through have been the team of carers. From developing an understanding about the pandemic to ensuring a positive environment, the carers have come across as parent figures to the children. While it is essential to keep growing and know more about the children in need of care and protection, the team of carers was taken through an extensive training programme encompassing the legal mandates while working in a Child Care Institution to understanding the mental health concerns that surface while the child is worked with to manage their past trauma. Along with this, the training programme focused on expected protocols to be followed with a visitor, welcoming a new child at the Home culminating into imbibing the essentials of caregiving.

Apart from the above fun-filled and fruitful engagements, children and team at Sunshine Homes have also been able to make some outstanding achievements.

Achievements

  • Arushi, aged 13, from one our Sunshine Homes for Girls has won 2nd prize in a singing competition organized virtually by our partner. She has received a tripod stand and a mic as her prize.
  • Deep, aged 12, from one our Sunshine Homes for Boys has won 3rd prize in a singing competition organized virtually by our partner. He has received a mic as his prize.
  • One of our Sunshine Homes for Boys has been awarded as the ‘Best Child Care Institution’ in Gurugram, an urban district in the state of Haryana. The award was conferred by the Governor of the Haryana state.

Moreover, I’d like to emphasize that despite having such challenging times here in India, we have been able to continue to provide the required care and protection to all our children at Sunshine Homes. The impact story of one of the children from our Sunshine Homes for Girls reflects the kind of individualized care we have been able to provide to our children. You must read it.

Impact story

Name: Rosy*

Age: 8 years

Date of Joining: 25th November 2019

Going through the agony of wandering on unknown streets of Badshahpur all by herself and with the diminishing hope of reaching back to her family, Rosy was shattered feeling alone on the crowded streets. Rescued by the authorities and repeated attempts by the Police to trace her family was in vain and destiny had her to be placed at one of the Sunshine Homes. Since the child has come to the Home in 2019, in the wake of her situation, the team made efforts to understand the child’s memories about the home she once called her own. A child with special needs and no family to look forward to, for Rosy, soon the Sunshine Home became family. Picturising and conceptualizing so much was quite unsought for Rosy but within her she has that unrecognized zeal & determination to sail through.

Initially, it was important for the Home team to get her psychological assessment done to understand the conceptual level of the child. The assessment report recorded an IQ of 58. Moreover, the child was also having difficulty in speech as well as struggled functioning in daily life. The support of caregivers was inevitable for the child to ensure she leads a dignified life for herself.

From handholding in eating, bathing and cleaning to managing her emotional outbursts together were a great challenge. For the child unable to process her emotions, aggression was a coping mechanism for every situation. With little language to express, Rosy often resorted to violent behavior as if wanting to convey something. This behavior not only impacted her mental health but also had immense influence on the relations she could have otherwise built with the children.

With lack of clarity in speech, good communication was a far-fetched dream for the child. However, establishing the bridge of communication was something that the team dedicatedly worked towards. From practicing speech development techniques with the child to connecting her with a speech therapist, the first brick towards communicating was laid.

Conducting sessions on basic life skills along with occupational therapy were the second important aspect for child development. Uninterrupted practice of drawing and coloring were part of the counseling sessions helping her develop concentration. Moreover, imagery was incorporated to help her imbibe knowledge of basics such as body parts and things around her.

Seeing Rosy’s journey from one facing separation to now being in a family, the team is proud about the developmental change in her. Considering it natural to be unaware about her family, did not lead Rosy to do away with sentiments of attachment and belongingness. Today, Rosy is seen to be one who has started opening up with people, comes forward to sit in a circle and share. This is also reflected in the attachment she has formed with few elders and young ones at the Home.

Rosy’s story is a testament to the fact that true faith and determination can move mountains. From being a child who was deprived of love to now one who has developed social relationships, Rosy is an example that the spirit of change is not inevitable. The round the clock work done by the team at the Home has brought tremendous change in temperament of the child. The greatest achievement while working with a child with special needs is the responsiveness through the sessions. This has been possible with Rosy and is the reason for the team to keep going with the child upholding the notion that depth of strength, tenacity and resourcefulness are powerful tools for a bright life.

So friends, this is all what I had to share on behalf of the children and team at Sunshine Homes. With this, I thank GlobalGiving and the associated donors for their sustained support which has helped us to continue to provide care and protection to children and youth at our Sunshine Homes.

Hoping to connect again.

Regards,

Ravinder

International Yoga Day
International Yoga Day
World Environment Day
World Environment Day
Kids planting trees
Kids planting trees
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Winter Carnival
Winter Carnival

Hello all,

Love and Greetings from Sunshine Homes!

I am Pranali*. I am 16 years old and staying at one of the Sunshine Homes run by Udayan Care in Mehrauli, Delhi. I am elated to get this opportunity to connect with you and share about the activities that I and other children have been a part of during this reporting period. But before I share the fun activities and some of the hardships that we faced in the last couple of months, I’d really like to share a brief about myself. Am I a movie star? Am I some renowned sport personality? Am I some celebrity? No, I am not any of these. However, knowing that there are a number of children out there who are devoid of opportunities, basic necessities, and even a family, I feel that it is important that I share my story with people through this platform so that such children can be helped.

Well! I came to Udayan Care as a 6-year-old little girl along with my elder brother. It happened after the demise of our father and the mother leaving us alone with our ageing maternal grandmother. Our grandmother could not continue to look after us for long due to her old age and the endemic poverty. Like any other child, I too was affected by my past experiences, became introvert and did not like to be around people. But the support and love that I have got in my new family, Udayan Care, has helped me adjust, overcome my unresolved past experiences and become confident. I soon started going to school and learnt to read and write and made some amazing friends. I could really see myself improving and becoming strong. I also got an amazing opportunity to go the USA almost for a year where I travelled the length and breadth of the country and performed as part of a choir raising funds for orphaned and abandoned children across the world. This is where I developed compassion. The experience truly helped me boost my confidence, get better at developing relationships and know different cultures. It also helped me develop good communication skills. I always look for opportunities to get exposed to new and different experiences which help me develop my personality as a loving and compassionate person.  I am a skilful painter and aspire to have a career in interior designing. Someday, I would want to be on such a platform through which I can raise awareness among the masses about the children without family care and the children in out-of-home care settings. I want to bring attention to the problems that they have been or go through and that these children too can flourish when provided with love and the right support. So, this is all about myself. I hope that the people reading my story find the right reasons and extend their support to the children like me.

Now, let me take you through some of the fun and learning engagements that took place at different Sunshine Homes –

  • “Bounce Back” Adidas-Udayan Care Virtual Winter Carnival’21

Set with the theme, Bounce Back, the first ever virtual adidas-Udayan Care Winter Carnival was organized on 21st February’21. Surpassing the difficult times, the event marked the celebration of resilience shown by the kids and the team at Udayan Care. 250+ kids and youth, 100 staff members and mentor parents, volunteers from adidas India team and numerous guests came together to enjoy the day filled with fun and excitement.

Kick-started by Savio, Digital Brand Commerce Director, adidas, the virtual Winter Carnival unfolded the graceful and energetic group dance performances and gimmicky AdMad acts put together by the Udayan Ghar children and the carers. On spot quiz sessions facilitated by team adidas, rib-tickling mimicry and astonishing magic show kept everyone engaged and glued to their screen.

  • International Women’s Day Celebration with MG Motor

Empowering Women has been like a process of bringing significance to the most significant. The process of empowerment twins best with education. Educating a child has always brought with it progress and a hope of a better future. To recognize the struggles and achievements of women from all walks of life, International Women’s Day was celebrated across all Udayan Ghars on 8th March 2021. The celebrations became bigger when officials from M.G. Motor, in groups of 2-3 members, visited the Udayan Ghars to reinstate the hope and inspiration of a better tomorrow. The team from M.G. Motor including Rajeev, Managing Director brought smiles on the face of all the children and staff. While spending time exchanging ideas and having interactive sessions, the entire visit was a boost to enshrining in each child, the spirit of women power and knowing about great women leaders. The excitement was increased even more when 14 Udayan Ghars received a laptop and each child got a goody bag along with tasty snacks for all.

  •  Clean Forest Campaign

Conservation of natural resources creates a state of harmony between us and mother earth. Looking at the present pollution levels and rampant garbage dumping in our cities, it is imperative to inculcate the values of cleanliness and conservation in the younger generation. 10 of girls from Udayan Ghar Jaipur participated in the “Clean Forest Campaign” of Jhalana Leopard Reserve, Jaipur and contributed their bit in cleaning the forest. The Campaign was successfully organized with the joint efforts of the Eco Rescuers Foundation, Jhalana Wild area team, Udayan Care, and the forest department.

  •  Holi Celebration

Red, yellow, green or blue; every colour of Holi has one common hue, i.e. colour of compassion.

A festival of colors, a time to strengthen relationships, this year, children & staff celebrated a quarantined Holi with colors of compassion, hope and happiness. While at some of the Ghars, it was a plethora of colors, at others, children delved into trying out making the traditional gujias which came out be a mouth-watering delicacy. The celebration was made grand by our esteemed donors from Pantaloons and Taco Bell joining in to donate and engage in some activities with the children.

  •  Art Workshops by ArtReach India Foundation

ArtReach India Foundation continued to conduct art workshops with children at some of the Udayan Ghars. A series of workshops that spanned over a year, starting from July’20 culminated into a virtual exhibition in Apri’21. The children showcased their artworks and were given a platform to share thoughts around their creative pieces.

  •  Informative sessions on Important Days of a Month

At the beginning of every month, children across Udayan Ghars are engaged in interactive sessions. They are made to identify important days and events in that particular month and are asked to plan activities and create informative content around the same. During every month, informative sessions on such days and events are conducted. 

Hope I have been able to give you fair glimpse of some of the fun and learning engagements amidst these COVID times in Sunshine Homes. These engagements along with untiring hopes, Udayan Ghar family, support from like-minded people and resilience has kept us buoyant even during the most difficult times. Now, let me tell you a bit about the hardships we have faced in the last few months and how we overcame the same.

As you know, India has recently been hit by a new wave of COVID-19 affecting states, cities, resources and people. Anxiety, loss of life, stress and helplessness were yet again on the rise impacting everyone physically, emotionally and psychologically.

The team at Sunshine Homes family, had made it through the struggles of 2020, by putting in place an efficient and quick response to the crisis, leveraged by the exceptional commitment of the team members. In March 2021, we found ourselves proud but rather exhausted and we could foresee that the months to come would not be easier, as we had wished them to be. Yet, once the force of the new wave became obvious, everybody in the team brushed away their tiredness and geared up to face the situation. To prevent the spread of the virus and to mitigate the risks, immediate directions and guidelines were issued. Once again there was a complete halt on the in and out movements. Considering the gravity of the situation, sessions on precautionary measures were conducted and the team was also trained to provide care and look after COVID-positive patients safely. 

Despite the stringent precautionary measures in place, our defences were breached and some of the Sunshine Homes got severely affected. Sadly, within a few weeks 32 children and staff members at some of the homes were tested positive. Arrangements for turning/ creating a room into a quarantine room were made in the affected homes. As a family would do, we are looked and continued looking after each other, following a strict Pre and Post covid protocol, trying to keep everyone safe and helping the infected ones recover quickly. Also, the timely supply of needed medication, equipments such as vaporizers, oxygen concentrators, oximeter etc. was truly helpful in curbing the spread of the virus.

The children & staff, so far, have recovered without a hospital admission or oxygen assistance. Most of members who were tested positive are also getting better. Very fortunately, most of us did not suffered from severe symptoms.

During this uncertain and fragile period, there is one thing we, the children know: by seeing how the adults around us become capable of facing such challenges, with calm and solidarity, we understand that it is with courage, humility and generosity that we can achieve great things and overcome the harshest times.

At last, I’d want to say that tough times never last, but tough people do.

With this, I thank GlobalGiving and the associated donors for their sustained support which has enabled us to continue to grow in a family environment. I wish everyone good health.

Hoping to connect again.

Thank you 

Pranali

Online Winter Carnival
Online Winter Carnival
Holi Celebration
Holi Celebration
International Women's Day
International Women's Day
International Women's Day celebration
International Women's Day celebration
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Republic Day Celebrations
Republic Day Celebrations

Hello all,

Love & Greetings from everyone at Sunshine Homes!

This is Ravinder again, bringing you the stories of hope and resilience from the Sunshine Homes.

So friends, as we all would agree, 2020 has been the year that has challenged us all in one way or the other. For us, at Sunshine Homes, the year has been extra ordinarily different. It has been the year of despair, misery, uncertainty and sorrows. It has also been the year of improvisation and adaptation. Despite the hardships faced, none of us ever thought of giving up. It now feels amazing to reflect upon the wonderful moments and memories of how bravely we stood together. How we have supported each other like a family and how we have coped, adapted and stayed tough in these tough times. The carers worked rigorously day and night in keeping the children safe, the children too were equally supportive during the lockdown. The mentors remained connected to the children in whatever way possible and, the social workers and counselors ensured positive mental wellbeing of the children and carers. Playing our part, we helped one another to sail through these pressing times and remained common among us was our commitment and the resilience.

Let me share a story of one of our team members, Dinesh, with you. His passion, commitment and resilience has been an inspiration for everyone working at Sunshine Homes.

Not all superheroes wear capes!

As the unlock progressed in phases, everyone gradually started adapting to the new normal and we continued to be happy for keeping more than 250 children and youth safe and healthy across our 17 Sunshine Homes, Udayan Ghars and 2 Aftercare facilities. Followed soon, there was an unprecedented crisis situation at 2 of our Sunshine Homes. It was sad and worrying that 3 of our residential carers and 1 non-residential staff were tested positive for COVID-19 even after following all the precautionary and safety measures, and were shifted to a quarantine centre.

Complete halt on the in and out movement, anxiety among the children and the staff, difficulty in assessing the situation and regular monitoring resulted in ever growing nervousness and sleepless nights. The crisis could have been nearly impossible to deal with unless responsible and committed team members like Dinesh would not have taken a charge and stepped forward.

When people across the nation preferred to stay back safe at their homes with their loving families, Dinesh, House father cum store keeper/ supervisor, a non-residential staff decided to stand alongside with his Udayan Ghar family in crisis.

Dinesh rode daily 10 Km on a bike from his home to the Sunshine Home making sure that the children and the residential carers living inside the Ghar do not face any problems and the much needed help and support can be provided as and when required.

Since the in and out movement was completely suspended keeping in mind the health concerns and obligation to the government orders, Dinesh everyday operated from his new workstation, his bike, parked right outside the Home premises. Maintaining daily registers, getting updates, arranging for the essentials, handling the required coordination between the home and the concerned government bodies, academic institutions and senior programme officials at the head office etc. was all being duly taken care of by Baloni. His presence during that time had also given immense moral support to the staff and the children living in the homes.

The compassion, hardwork, sincerity and commitment shown by Dinesh is highly appreciated and applauded. He is truly an inspiration and our supercarer.

There have been innumerable stories at Sunshine Homes that kept us buoyant during the pressing times and eventually helped sailing through the same.

I would also love to take you through some of the activities and events where the children and the carers were engaged during the period.

Observing World Mental Health Day (10th October 2020):

With the ongoing Pandemic, our lives have witnessed observable change while bringing with it not only the risk of the infection but also a fearful living. With more of isolation living and the increased chance of increase of mental health concerns, children across Udayan Ghars were taken through sessions as well as a range of activities that not only became a medium of expression of feelings and emotions, but also extend psycho-social support to each other increasing the investment in mental health. Moreover, in collaboration with CFSI Films, the children across all the Udayan Ghars watched the movie ‘Halo’ which highlights the need for company to overcome loneliness and efforts one takes to lead a positive life despite odds.

Joy of Giving Week:

Giving has been one of the core values that children are inculcated with over the years. Despite the pandemic situation, this year also, children at some of the Sunshine Homes went on to express gratitude to the staff at the Homes who have worked selflessly during these difficult times going on to even donating masks and raw food material to people in need.

Children’s Day & Diwali Celebration:

The pandemic situation, now popularly referred to as ‘The New Normal’ has taught us new and innovative ways to do things. This New Normal has presented us with possibilities to reach new heights and make our mark. With beginning of the festive season wherein, the festivals too were seen celebrated with the taste of new normal, the children, carers and mentor parents brought in their own creative ways of celebrating Diwali. The members at each of the 17 Sunshine Homes, lighted hope and gifted laughter as this year also saw the festival of lights falling on the same day as Children’s day.

Conducted as a fun surprise event, the rib tickling act put together by Clownselors via online session, seemed to be the perfect gift for children during these pressing times.

Followed by the fun surprise event was the Inter Rangoli Competition which invoked creativity in not only children but all the members of the Home family including children, carers, mentor parents and social worker. Keeping up the festive spirits high, each team participated enthusiastically in the competition.

Christmas Celebration:

True they say, the best gifts around any Christmas tree is the presence of a happy family.

Submerged in sheer joy, the entire Udayan Ghar family celebrated Christmas with much enthusiasm and love. From decorating the Christmas tree to singing carols, from exchanging gifts to enjoying a relishing meal, the children, staff and mentor parents across the 17 Sunshine Homes left no stone unturned in making this Christmas of the New Normal times a special one. Where some corporates, became Santa who sent gifts and smiles to the children, another corporate studded the celebration with fun and excitement through an online musical concert by Aditya, a renowned singer. Indeed, it was the one special Christmas this time and the right way to say goodbye to the passing year.

Republic Day Celebration (26th January 2021):

Inculcating the patriotic spirit in the young chiildren, Republic Day was celebrated across all the Homes. Each Home celebrated the glorious day with its own taste where, some sang patriotic songs, participated in quiz, others hoisted flag, made presentation on revolutionaries and shared their stories.

A token of love, a token of gratitude and a win over difficult times:

The year 2020 has been tough for all of us and it has extraordinarily impacted the children all across the world. From shutdown of academic institutions to restrictions in movement, from loss in academics to limited opportunities of recreation, the children have been among the worst sufferers of this pandemic crisis and the children at Sunshine Homes were no exception to this. The experience, initially being overwhelming for the children has today turned into an opportunity for enhancing skills, developing relationships, inculcating empathy and above all the motivation to sail through these difficult times. At the Sunshine Homes, it is this zeal of children that motivated us as caregivers to stay buoyant, confident and optimistic about the present to the future.

Recognizing this patience and resilience of the children at Sunshine Homes, one of our dearest Trustees, presented 250 + children and youth across 17 Sunshine Homes with a hand-knitted woolen muffler made with love and warmth by herself and her family and friends.

This is all I had to share with you. I thank GlobalGiving and the associated donors for their sustained support which has enabled us to continue to work towards the cause of the children.

With this, I wish everyone a very happy and prosperous new year 2021. May we all stay blessed and connected.

Thank you.

Christmas celebrations at the home
Christmas celebrations at the home
Kids celebrating Diwali
Kids celebrating Diwali
Girls showing their Rangoli
Girls showing their Rangoli
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Children during morning exercise
Children during morning exercise

“One Two – It might not be a seasonal flu

Three Four – CORONA waits outside the door

Five Six – Stay home and watch some flicks

Seven Eight – Our carers are great

Nine Ten – Social distance is must to maintain

Eleven Twelve –Take care of yourself”

-By Anjali, 14 years

 

Hello all,

Love & Greetings from the children at Sunshine Homes!

I am Santosh, a child living at one of the Sunshine Homes (Udayan Ghar), run and managed by Udayan Care with your love and support under the aegis of Udayan Ghar Programme. I hope you and your loved ones are keeping well during these troubled times. I feel happy to be writing this report and share how we, the children and staff at Sunshine Homes, have been dealing with this pandemic outbreak and how we have felt during the nationwide lockdown.

It’s been a difficult time for all of us during this pandemic crisis and everyone and everything across the world is affected in one way or the other. In other words, the impact of the pandemic COVID-19 has been outrageous.

The impact of the pandemic, clearly visible in the form of economic and health crisis, no or difficult access to food, education and other services etc., has presented a proven threat into the lives of all people across age and identities. However, children across the world, remained to be the worst affected due to this unprecedented crisis. As we all know that governments all over the world have issued stay at home and social distancing guidelines to contain the spread of the virus, the precautionary measures may vary from country to country but the policies largely involvedclosing academic institutions, non-essential physical shops and businesses, and limiting public transportation and spaces, as well as social gatherings.

During the nationwide lockdown we, like everybody else, did not have physical access to school, our friends, schoolmates and had no or limited opportunity for outdoor play and socialization. We felt secluded and isolated. Such a time could have impacted us adversely making us bored, lethargic, anxious, angry and frustrated and may have exposed us to some unforeseen risks that other vulnerable children face every day and night. It could have hampered our health and development. However, we are fortunate enough to have around such a loving family, including carers, Mentor Parents and counsellors to look after us.

Our Udayan Care family devised strategies to continue to provide care and protection to more than 200 children and Aftercare Young Adults living in 17 Sunshine Homes and 2 Aftercare facilities. Apart from providing safe and protected environment at the homes, nutritious diet and health services to all of us, the team tried its best in making us strong and stay connected with each other. One of the major interventions that the team took up was to ensure that none of us miss our part on school learning.

As the schools in India continue to be shut for an indefinite period of time, online classes on zoom, google meet, Microsoft teams, whatsapp and many other digital platforms are being conducted. It is similar to home schooling happening abroad. I am also attending my school classes on such digital platforms. Seeing the need, all Sunshine Homes have been equipped with additional desktops, laptop, web cameras, speakers, mics, high speed internet and other gadgets. This technological transformation has helped us become smarter and stand on the brighter side of the digital divide.

Much emphasis is being given on physical and mental health at Sunshine Homes. While following the required precautionary measures as notified by government in the guidelines are being followed, regular sanitization of Sunshine continued to happen and provision of basic health aids, medicine and consultation with doctors and physicians is being well taken care of. As new children continue to come in the Udayan Ghars, it is ensured that they are quarantined in a separate room within the ghar premises for the required period and medical test for COVID-19 is done. Group and individual counseling sessions, structured routines and productive engagements are being planned and conducted with children, youth and carers. Considering the psychological impact of the pandemic crisis, a number of training programmes and workshops have been conducted with children, carers and other concerned stakeholders.

Some of the training programmes or workshops that took place were :

1)     Art; A mode of Expression with carers and social workers

A time off from their regular and vigorous routine, the carers and social workers were engaged in experiencing the therapeutic benefits of art. The session offered space to the participants to rejuvenate, relive the moments of their childhood and, experiment with their creativity. They also got to know about some renowned artists and were mesmerized by their artwork and inspiring stories.The sessions were conducted separately with carers and social workers.

2)     EmoAid Training programme with children, youth, carers, social workers and mentor parents

Emo-Aid, a self- care online programme conducted by mental health professionals, is designed to provide Emotional First Aid for Emotional wellbeing. It is a series of experiential learning workshops to develop practical skills and tools for enhancing and capacity building in emotional health.It is being conducted with all the programme stakeholders in batches

3)     Keeping up well during COVID Times with children

The Corona Virus Pandemic and the unending lockdown have taken a toll on not only the lifestyle but also the mental health of children. Having being engaged in creative activities while continuing to attend online classes, children have accepted it as a new way of life. But as this time is getting prolonged day by day, there is brewing up anxiety about the present and the future. To facilitate children develop an effective coping mechanism and also understand that this will pass too, a session on “Keeping up Well during COVID Times” was conducted.

4)     Handling Inspections at Udayan Ghars with Carers

As frequency of inspections has increased in the recent past, the vigilance of the Government Bodies has been at its highest. With the growing lens of the Inspection staff, children often became scared and felt uneasy on the suddenness of these checks. On the other hand, the care staff also was suddenly on tender hooks. Thus to effectively manage the inspections and provide a support to the care staff, a workshop on “Handling Inspections at the Udayan Ghars.”

All such initiatives and interventions have helped us stay strong and sail through this pandemic crisis but our carer teamacross all the homes has played a prime role in keeping us safe and healthy. They were there with us and for us all the time. They cooked food for us, played indoor games with us, exercised daily in the morning with us, engaged us in some exciting activities and storytelling, helped us with our studies, helped us overcome our fears and anxieties around the pandemic and lived with us 24X7. Ifdoctors, nurses and police are the warriors outside homes then our residential carers are the superheroes inside the homes.

To acknowledge, appreciate and honor the heroic work of the residential carers during COVID times, the UG team organized an event, ‘To Carers, with Love’ that ran over a week. The group of children, mentor parents and social worker at each of the 17 homes brought in their own flavors and gave their best to make the day special for one of the most important part of their Udayan Ghar family i.e. the carers. Where some of the homes planned for surprise party with home cooked food by mentor parents and social workers, the other homes went with organizing dance and group song performance and funny impersonation acts by the children for the carers. The group at each ghar also presented hand crafted thank you cards with beautiful messages for the carers.

While culminating, the individual celebrations resulted in the grand online event organized where mentor parents, carers, social workers, programme officials and members from the senior management across the 17 Udayan Ghars connected over a video call to give tribute to our residential carer team, the unsung heroes of the pandemic.

The one thing that I am certain about is that I am lucky to have found such a loving and caring family at Sunshine Homes, Udayan Care.

I am grateful to GlobalGiving and all the associated sponsors and donors who have supported my family so that children like me can be loved and looked after by such wonderful family members.

Hoping to stay connected with you all.

Stay safe and healthy.

 

With love,

Santosh, 18 years

 

 

Children attending online classes
Children attending online classes
Carers' Event
Carers' Event
Celebrating our Carer staff
Celebrating our Carer staff
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Yoga & Mediation Sessions
Yoga & Mediation Sessions

Dear Everyone,

Hope you are keeping well and adhering to the required precautionary measures to keep yourself and others protected during this strange and difficult time.

I am Ravinder, heading the Udayan Ghar Programme (Udayan Care Sunshine Homes) at Udayan Care. I feel proud to be leading this magnificent programme which is providing shelter, love, care, protection and nourishment to over 200 at-risk children in 17 Udayan Ghars at the moment. We, at Udayan Care, aim to build a conducive family environment helping these children to reach their full potential and subsequently transform into self-dependent individuals.

It is indeed a matter of great pride to be writing this report for the GlobalGiving family and present our work to the benevolent supporters and well-wishers.

The last few months have been difficult, the toughest ones to be precise. The past 3 months’ time taught us to be adaptable, flexible, resilient, innovative and strong to stay focused towardsour most important responsibility - the young people who are the reason we exist.

As the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on the world, keeping oneself and their loved ones safe remained to be the first and foremost priority for everyone. We too, at Udayan Care, are doing our best to keep our young ones, children being nurtured in Udayan Ghars (Sunshine Homes), and ourselves protected and safe amidst this pandemic.

In order to continue to provide the same family environment to our young ones, the team at Udayan Care felt the need of revising its strategy and approach of working towards fulfilling the overall needs of the children and at the same time keeping them safe and protected against all the ill effects of the pandemic including physical, emotional and psychological.

 

Our approach during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis –

  •  Awareness Building

The children and carers across 17 Udayan Ghars, through storytelling, comic strips, interactive sessions, posters and presentations were educated about the COVID-19 and its spread. They were made aware about the precautionary measures to be taken to protect themselves and others against the infection.

Social distancing, sanitizing or washing hands regularly, maintaining hygiene and staying at home and were reiterated as must to follow steps.

  •   Creating Safe Space

In order to ensure the Ghar family members’ safety, each and every corner of the Udayan Ghars was sanitized with the help of government and private sanitization agencies.Food and other essential commodities (medicines, masks, gloves, toiletries etc.) were stocked so as to limit the movement outside the premises.

In every Udayan Ghar, a separate room, with all the essentials, was turned into a quarantine room for any new child coming to the Ghar or any family member in the Ghar, who might show symptoms.

Health advisories and Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for Prevention and Management of COVID-19 in Child Care Institutions (CCIs) was developed and shared across all the Ghars. The carers through online platforms were also trained on the use of the SOP.

  • Ensuring Positive Mental Well-Being

Research studies have shown that children who have been exposed to traumatic experiences in the past are at a greater risk of developing mental health concerns during crisis situation. There is a likelihood of any previous trauma getting resurfaced or even worse.

In order to ensure a healthy and conducive environment at the Ghar, our mental health team, led by the mental health experts and the programme head, intervened with counseling and group sessions with children and carers through audio and video calls at regular intervals.

  • Upgrading Skills

The carer team at the Udayan Ghars often come from an underprivileged background where they do not have opportunities to learn and develop and get exposed to the outside world. While being at Udayan Ghars, the carer team is ensured to learn and develop the skills required to work with the children in an out-of-home care setting, the need to make them tech savvy was never realized. However, this pandemic crisis and the nationwide lockdown has certainly made us realize that how important it is for the carers to know and learn about different communication platforms in the virtual world.

Helping carers and children learn to use online meeting platforms such as zoom, google meet etc. not only upskilled them but also helped other members of the Ghar team to monitor the day to day functioning of the Ghar virtually and also offered opportunities to engage them in workshops and a number of other fun and learning activities.

  • Continuum of Learning

With the nationwide lockdown and the academic institutions shut, our inquisitive children didn’t let go off that opportunity to learn. As the schools started with remote classes, children at Udayan Ghars diligently began to study online being at the Ghar and hence, the continuum of learning was maintained.

  • Workshops and Capacity Building

The team continued to conduct capacity building workshops with children and carers despite the crisis. The upgraded skills of children and carers to use online communication applications proved quite helpful in conducting the workshops and implementing the lesson plans.

The topics for the workshops were decided based on the on ground assessment during this pandemic crisis.

  • Work from Home

The lockdown in India progressed in versions from 1.0 to 4.0 and the non-residential members of the Ghar team continued to work from their private war rooms, home, trying their best to provide the required support, guidance and aid to the carers and the children at the Ghars.

  • Giving Back

Surviving a crisis can never be easy until the support to overcome or resettle comes in one’s way.

As an endeavor to reach out to others in need, our mental health team obligingly volunteered to be a part of COVID Response Team, an initiative by DCPCR and a host of other partners, to provide psychological and emotional support to thousands of vulnerable people across the nation through toll-free helpline. Migrant laborers, young people and others who could not return back to their family due to the untamed situation, anxious and alone, called and connected with the response team via the helpline. They shared their feelings, concerns and were counseled to stay positive and healthy. The team also helped them to locate the different aid provided in their local area such as ration and other essential commodities.

The Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for Prevention and Management COVID 19 in Child Care Institutions (CCIs) developed by Udayan Care was shared with other agencies working in the alternative care space and child protection.

As the spirit to give back to the society is inculcated in the children in Udayan Ghars, some of our alumni also came forward to help their Udayan Care family sustain and survive during these testing times. Some volunteered to engage the young ones in online tuition classes whereas, some of them offered to donate in the emergency response fund.

  • Bringing Home our Alumni

Rehabilitated in society with a decent job, a decent place to live in and a dream to lead a dignified life which is away from being included or counted among the disadvantaged or vulnerable sections which once they were part of, the youth leaving care feel jeopardized at present.

Hit hard by the unprecedented times that the world is facing today, the care leavers have once again found themselves surrounded by the clouds of setback and distress. Some have lost their jobs, some have not received their monthly salary and some lived with the constant fear of losing their only support for survival anytime soon. One needs to be stronghearted to empathise and understand the situation that they have been through or experiencing at the moment.

As reiterated in the Udayan Care philosophy, “Once an Udayan, always an Udayan” the Udayan Care family extended support to its care leavers and alumni by providing ration kits and medical, psychological, emotional and financial support. Some of the care leavers, after taking the required health safety measures, have also been housed in separate rooms in our aftercare facilities.

 

Fun and Learning Engagements during Pandemic Crisis –

Our young ones at Udayan Ghars utilised the quarantine time by getting engaged in a number of activities ranging from daily morning exercise, mediation, gardening, art and craft, cooking some new mouth-watering recipes, playing mind bending games to attending online academic classes, counselling sessions, storytelling sessions and lending a helping hand in day to day activities.

o   Art & Craft

Creativity and innovativeness are likely to blossom when children are able to sketch out their thoughts and imagination on art notebook. Our dear partner ArtReach India Foundation went virtual and delivered online art sessions with some of the renowned artists of the contemporary times.

The children and carers using various online platforms played with their creativity and created some incredible art & craft pieces.

o   Cooking

Cooking is therapeutic and stimulates your brain offering opportunities to experiment, create and experience a sense of accomplishment. Cooking for someone else is also believed to be a way of expressing of love and helps you connect better with them.

Our budding chefs at Udayan Ghars, with the available ingredients cooked happiness garnished with love and creativity.

o   Yoga and Meditation

If you cannot go outside, go inside! Our young Udayanites, regular with their morning exercise and meditation are trying to get close to their inner-self and healing their lives.

o   Session on Online Safety

The world under lock down is all online but the question arises is that is it safe even after taking so many precautions. Well we are certain that internet isn’t the safest place of all times. So, education about Digital Literacy is a must. And we at Udayan Care take every step to ensure our children’s safety as well as their learning. Voila! A whole session on cyber security was conducted and that too by not leaving their places! This quarantine has not only given us time to spend with our families but also learn with them.

o   Session on Our Planet and Our Life in the Lockdown

Seeing the changing face of the planet earth, the children at Udayan Ghars were engaged in online sessions wherein, they as a group brainstormed to recognize the nature and life before and during the lockdown and came up with write-ups and posters intrigued towards making people realize the harm that has been done to the environment and what they can do to keep the environment and the planet earth safe from further destruction.

o   QUIZantine; Udayan Ghar Online Inter-House Quiz Competition

COVID 19 lockdown has propelled the world towards exploring new dimensions of life. Even giving way to some otherwise unimaginable events. Yes, 17 Udayan Ghars conducted an online Quizantine (Quiz during the self-quarantine). The 4 round quiz competition included multiple choice quiz questions, riddles and other creative questionnaires.

The event rightly roped the sense of being alone together. The children across the homes enjoyed the creative engagement and participated enthusiastically.

This is how the whole team at Udayan Care worked with all vim and vigor and continued to provide care and protection to its most valued members of the family, the children. I hope with time the clouds of misfortune and distress fade away and everything gets back to normal.

I am truly grateful to all the sponsors and well-wishers who are equally creditable for the wonderful work that we have been able to do at Udayan Care with their continued support.

 

Stay safe and healthy!

Sincerely indebted,

Ravinder and the entire team at Udayan Care Sunshine Homes

Online sessions
Online sessions
Art & Crafts being done by the kids
Art & Crafts being done by the kids
Spending time with nature
Spending time with nature
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Organization Information

Udayan Care

Location: New Delhi, Delhi - India
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @UdayanCare
Project Leader:
Garuav Nagar
Delhi, Delhi India
$27,680 raised of $60,000 goal
 
358 donations
$32,320 to go
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