Friday, January 14, 2011

For a change, something worth reading-1

What is it about children that makes them endearing? An innocence that is lost once they grow up? Or just the very fascination of watching small sized versions of ourselves? Or could it perhaps be the underlying awareness that eventually they will rule the world?

Whatever the reasons, there is nothing quite as beautiful as childhood. However, there are children who are deprived of a lot of things that made childhood enjoyable for us. First of all, parents an as a consequence, unconditional parental love. Either deserted or orphaned at an early age, these children live a childhood filled with misery, being left to die or worse, forced into begging, labour, prostitution etc.

It is our responsibility to ensure that the future of this world lies in able hands. My small step towards this was joining Nirantara almost three years ago at the suggestion of my class mate and now colleague, Sreekanth and it’s been a wonderful journey ever since! Nirantara started with 13 people and is now more than 250 members strong. So what does Nirantara do?

From sponsoring education for the needy children, to conducting activities for orphans and destitute children, to visiting orphanages on a regular basis and providing them support in the form of monthly groceries, stationery etc, they undertake and encourage any and every act of kindness that can be shown towards the underprivileged. Their main focus is uplifting the poor and needy children, because they believe it is their duty to ensure that these victims of circumstantial adversity get an equal shot at taking on the future as do privileged children. For more information do visit

Having personally been to some of the orphanage visits, the one thing that struck me was the way these kids’ faces light up when you visit them and greet you with a priceless smile, despite being complete strangers to you! Something we adults could learn. It’s not your money these kids want. They just want someone to play with, someone to talk about their favourite hero, someone to listen to their songs or sing for them. They need friends. They need love. They need our time. They need your time.

This month, Nirantara is completing 3 years of wonderful service, and we were in a discussion as to how best to celebrate this. It was decided that there would be a function held on the 30th and kids from the orphanages they support be called and activities conducted for them. This meeting was held at one of our visits to Shelter Home (a home for HIV affected kids that we have been supporting for about 2 years) and it was then that I realized here was a grass root level organization doing a great job with more than 250 members and 100 permanent donors, yet only around 15 people had actually turned up for the visit and to involve themselves in the activities. I felt that the best way to call people’s attention towards this and ask for their time would be to speak to them in a language best understood by them. And a language that’s been my love all my life. Music.

(to be continued)

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