A few months ago, we published a great first-hand account of the Mentor India programme at Paranga Vidya Kendra written by Jaishree Garg, a first-time mentor. After her experience teaching these wonderful kids, Jaishree decided that she wanted to go the extra mile and make a tangible difference to the day-to-day lives of the children she had taught. Nandini, a member of the KYS team, shared her experiences accompanying Jaishree to the school.
Finding A Need
While teaching the kids at Paranga Vidya Kendra, she realised that the school had only one official sport – Kabaddi. She quickly realised that this restriction was born out of necessity. The school didn’t have the equipment necessary to teach their students more games and lacked the funds to purchase them. This struck a note with her and she decided that she would do her best to fund some sports items for them.
To raise money, she turned to crowdfunding. Using social media, she reached out to her network of friends and family and asked for donations towards the cause. Jaishree quickly collected Rs. 30,000 – more than she asked for!
One kind lady responded to her Facebook post and sponsored football goalposts, and another donated a trampoline. The wholesale vendor she visited to purchase the gear offered to drop off the items free of charge. It definitely proved to her (and us!) that kindness can be found at every turn.
Response From The School
Overwhelmed by the generosity of Jaishree’s gesture, the school declared her visit the Annual Sports Day. When we arrived at the school, the excitement of the students and teachers alike was palpable. The principal, Mr. Rammurthy, was thrilled to see us and showed us how the school had prepared for the influx of new equipment. A space had been cleared for a badminton court – the grass had been removed and the ground had been smoothened for the occasion. The assembly area had been cleared as well, and was ready to host football games.
Additionally, Jaishree was named the chief guest of the event, and inaugurated the day. She also had the opportunity to gift the sports equipment to the kids personally, and interact with them on the subject of sports and their importance.
A Glimpse Into Playtime
The equipment itself varied from chess sets and other board games to rackets for badminton and hockey sticks. There were even some hula-hoops in the mix! By the time we were saying goodbye, the 10th standard students had already set up the football goal posts, the smaller children were jumping on the trampoline and even the teachers had gotten in on the fun – hula hooping for the first time in their lives!
Children were skipping with their brand new jump ropes (who knew there were so many ways to do it). Badminton rackets were also in high demand, with many aspiring PV Sindhu’s and Pullela Gopichand’s in the student body.
Several students tried their hand at hockey for the first time. Jaishree, a hockey player herself, was amazed at how effortlessly they picked up the game. It was also nice to see local sports like ‘Pitto’ and ‘Latto’ being played.
Jaishree’s selfless efforts have made an impact on the lives of all the students at Paranga Vidya Kendra, and will continue to affect the lives of future students as well. We at Mentor India couldn’t be more proud! Congratulations, Jaishree, and thank you!
Liked reading this? Then you might also like to read Mentor India – Once A Volunteer, Always A Teacher.