From Educating Children To Empowering Adults: These Students Are Changing The Lives Of The Poor
Walking around the streets of Village Dehmi Kalan, Rajasthan, you’ll notice little kids playing on the streets, you’d even see one of them rolling a tire once in a while, reminding you of the innocence of these children. The villagers are going to their place of work, and the women of the village are going out to fetch water from the well, in their colourful traditional Rajasthani attire. While all this depicts the image of a typical village, it also shows how much more these communities need to develop, and Gramiksha Jaipur works in this direction – the direction of making a positive change in the life of people who are short of resources by enabling them to attain their potential and self-sufficiency.
The NGO works to create interest among students for education under Project Udaan. The young volunteers of Gramiksha Jaipur, help feed their desire to learn by using a variety of methods to make education interesting and keep their curiosity alive by teaching them using computers and games. “Gramiksha is not just an NGO; it’s a family. When I’d joined this organisation, I’d hoped to learn a lot and help out in the betterment of the society in whatever way I can. But as we went on with the various projects of Gramiksha, it became an integral part of my life – especially Project Udaan. Just as much as the kids would be waiting for us, we’d be dying to see them. Teaching those kids and seeing their satisfied faces was a pleasure in itself. Once we met a few kids, we taught in Project Udaan, and they stopped to say hello to us. And told us that they’re waiting for us to come and teach them soon – that’s the kind of self-satisfaction one looks for and that’s how much Gramiksha influences and means in my life,” says their volunteer, Pallavi.
This project is presently going on in two schools situated in Dehmi Kalan. The organisation follows a very systematic approach of teaching wherein the volunteers are provided with modules for different subjects for each class. Initial, mid and final assessments are also taken to track the progress of the children. The final evaluation for this year is yet to happen but the initial and mid-term assessment data was analysed, and a good improvement in the students has been noted!
Sushant, says, “The reason I joined Gramiksha was to create a better world; little by little, day by day. And being a part of Udaan has helped me work towards that goal, through the power of knowledge. As a teacher to these young minds, I’ve always laid emphasis on the value of education, by making learning fun & interesting! Over a period of few months, I’ve seen an ever-growing eagerness to learn in the eyes of every student there.”
The volunteers also celebrated children’s day with the children under Project Udaan with a lot of fun and frolic. The kids ran around dancing and singing with the Gramiksha volunteers, and those smiles genuinely lit up everyone’s day. The volunteers also distributed gifts to the children, played games with them as the children enjoyed their day off.
Gramiksha Jaipur also organised a clothes donation drive at Manipal University Jaipur and collected truckloads of clothes and shoes to give away. The clothes were sorted to discard the unusable clothes and separate them according to the weather. The volunteers then distributed these clothes to the people of J P Colony, Rajasthan. The joy on the faces of those villagers was unparalleled.
The organisation also organises fundraisers to help raise money to support different causes that it takes up in various villages. Recently, they hosted a flash mob at World Trade Park Mall in Jaipur where more than 40 volunteers performed in the scorching heat, not just once but thrice for the fundraiser! You can find their youtube channel here.
Gramiksha Jaipur also participated twice in the [email protected] week organised by the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII).
Under this, they organised an event named “Street Service First” at the Amber Fort on 14 August 2016 where the volunteers helped the street vendors by selling their products. By the end of the day, there was a marked increase in their daily wages.
Another event named “A Day at an Orphanage” was organised on 22 January 2017 where the volunteers visited an orphanage and spent the day with the amazing kids there. Their undying resilience makes them the real heroes. The volunteers and the children had a gala time as they danced, sang, ate cake, learnt how to make boxes and butterflies using origami and clicked lots of pictures to store the many memories everyone made that day.
In one of their other projects named Jagrukta, the volunteers go to different parts of the city finding cases and to bring into the limelight a clearer picture of what the underprivileged children go through and feel, to a modern educated society which turns a blind eye towards them. Little did they know about the change they were about to bring in someone’s life.
Swasthya and Street Meet are two other projects apart from the ones mentioned. You can find out more about them and the organisation at their website www.gramiksha.in
The light is not at the end of the tunnel. The light glows the moment we start working for something, for someone with nothing but pure intentions in our hearts. All of the people reading this are the light. Whenever we see something bad happening, or there’s someone whose state makes you feel sad, let’s not just sit back and feel sympathetic about it. Let’s go and help them with whatever means we can. Let us be the light in someone’s life. Our small effort can be a big change for them!
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