Thursday, October 4, 2012

Gandhi Jayanti - Spreading Smiles

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”- Mahatma Gandhi

On the occasion of this Gandhi Jayanti, team SRC undertook two initiatives to sensitize the student community and mobilize resources for the service of the less privileged.

As management students, all of us at XIMB are aware of Maslow’s law, and how clothing is a basic human need. SRC, in partnership with the Bakul foundation, worked at this need satisfaction by becoming a channel for transfer of clothing from those who had it in abundance, to the deprived. A massive fortnight-long collection drive was held across the campus. People donated everything from surplus clothing, footwear, umbrellas to unused stationary. It was indeed heartening to see our friends join in the ‘Joy Of Giving’.

In the second initiative, a 14-member strong team from SRC spent 2nd October with at Satyasai Seva children’s home. We spent the day interacting with kids ranging from the age of 3-14 years, or rather, we spent the day reinforcing invaluable lessons via these kids.

Some of the lessons re-learnt were:

1.       Experience each moment to the fullest
The enthusiasm the children displayed every activity was inspiring. Be it group games, team competitions, singing, dancing, enacting movie scenes, or posing for photographs, the energy they radiated was simply uplifting. Theirs was the loudest voice and every voluntary activity saw a whole posse of eager participants.

2.       Approach your elders as students, your equals as peers, and your juniors as teachers
All the children were extremely respectful, not only to us volunteers, but to each other as well. They were all eager to learn, and the elder ones went out of their way to help and instruct the youngsters.
The children were divided into groups of 10 each, and were assigned 2 volunteers. Each group had to come up with a name. It was heartening to see the elders kids take the opinion of the younger ones, and explain the rationale behind the chosen name. Virat Kohli, Spiderman and Ben 10 were the favourites for group names.

3.       Smile is the universal language
More than half of the volunteers didn’t know Odiya, but they needn’t have worried! The children, rather than remaining reclusive as we feared, painstakingly tried to learn and converse in hindi. Moreover, they were easily reassured by a smile and the interaction happened quite seamlessly courtesy a happy, friendly countenance on both sides.

To add to the joy of the day, two celebrities from the Odiya film industry (Ollywood) graced the occasion and interacted with kids- noted actor Mr. Akash Das Nayak and celebrated villain Mr. Samresh Routray. The joy that lit the faces the children was worth seeing when they talked to their idols, saw live performances, and got acting tips.

As the day drew to a close, we left with a joyous heart, grateful for having experienced the truth behind another of Bapu’s famous teachings-

“The law of love could be best understood and learned through little children”


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