By Volunteer Ashita Adhikari, FHI Delhi
Two third of the population in our nation lives in poverty and more than 200 million people do not have sufficient access to food out of which 30% are our children. The question here is that with many government reforms to provide good education, food and shelter for people below the poverty line, where does the problem lie?
This poverty impacts children in a variety of different ways through lack of proper education, child labor, malnutrition, etc. This is where Fly Higher India NGO – FHI comes into action. It strives to bridge this gap by providing the underprivileged and vulnerable children with equal opportunities of social and emotional development.
The toxic environment these kids live in is heavy with the presence of helplessness, powerlessness and voicelessness, which could only be swept away by instilling in them confidence through education and all-round development. But the education system in our country mainly focused on academics. FHI realised the value of teaching life skills to the children we interact with. To help them learn from their experiences, which is far more effective than just rote learning.
We as volunteers at FHI have to first become friends of the kids we interact with so they can express themselves confidently without hesitation and the fear of getting judged.
A typical event day of FHI involves engagement between the kids and the volunteers, through art, music, dance and game based activities. These activities create a very beautiful platform for the children to play and learn simultaneously.
FHI can and does in many ways bridge the gap for these underprivileged children. Building life skills helps the children to develop sound judgment and good habits for life long wellness. But to build life skills is not a task of one day. Life skills provide children with independent and confident thinking, how to socialize and make new friends, how to fight their insecurities and fears and how to take action in situations where they’re alone.
But this needs regular and constant attention towards the kids on a more personal level. The engagement needs to be continuous and proactive. With FHI already organising various beneficial programs, it has also designed their life skills education programmes for their children and has given the volunteers the knowledge and freedom on how to deliver such programmes in simple ways in the kids everyday. A reflective discussion should take place with the kids, on a social or attitudinal aspect.
When the child learns self reflection, critical thinking and problem solving skills, they get a voice, feel empowered and can help ownself. FHI is working steadily on that path with giving each child the confidence in himself and make them know how important and unique every single one of them is. Every smile we, as volunteers at FHI, put on our kids’ faces is a step further in making them realize how worthy they are.
FHI makes the children believe in themselves and have an independent voice. FHI’s mission is to create a long-term impact and we are the change -drivers. Nothing can stop a nation’s children from flying higher with equal opportunities if we all join hands and share the same ideals that FHI is built upon.