By Volunteer Sakthi Amrutha, FHI Chennai
“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children” — Nelson Mandela, Former President of South Africa
Quotes like these have always made me contemplate the state of underprivileged children who do not get access to proper education and opportunities. Come to think of it, are some of these “not so fortunate” children denied playing a major role in the future because they didn’t have the opportunity to develop themselves? What if this society missed it’s chance to create future scientists, artists, etc. by not paying attention to teaching them life skills? When all of these problems lead to unequal opportunities despite of government programs for the people below the poverty line, there is certainly only one thing left to do, ‘creating awareness’. If the children are made aware of the education and other kind of opportunities that lie ahead for them then the chances of advancement will be open to all.
Fly Higher India NGO – FHI has taken a great step with a group of volunteers in various cities spread across India to answer all the aforementioned questions. Willingness to create equality and spreading awareness is specially seen when every volunteer acts patiently with the kids in carrying out a large amount of activities that continue to play a great role in having an impact on each child’s physical, mental and emotional well being. After attending a few events of FHI, I finally understood why these kids couldn’t use the education given to them for creating a better lifestyle for themselves. It was because they fell behind others in effective communication and lack of confidence.
FHI Chennai, the city that I reside at is currently focusing on life skill development through various fun sessions and speeches. I’m honoured to say that I have been a part of these kind of sessions. Self awareness, one of the life skills most needed and less talked about was well delivered to the children of Children’s Home of Hope in an origami activity where the main goal was to make the children identify their individual goals and how they plan to work towards the dream, in which our volunteers helped them. Effective communication is another subject that was first developed in students of another school named Yein Udaan where they shared creative stories they wrote in front of the whole group. Breaking the stage fear and expressing whatever they felt was rare, even in well grown adults. To see few kids who were afraid at first but volunteered to speak in front of the crowd, after all the cheering and encouragement was a beautiful sight. And finally my questions and doubts vanished! Now, I have seen the effect when broad minded, future oriented adults come together to support and unfold yet to be successful children. And to the volunteers of FHI: we are the lines that can connect the dots. We can bring balance. We can make them flourish. We are the ‘bridge’ that can finally fill the gap between inequalities. Well, if the Bridge is not the way, we can FLY the kids to their dream destinations.