Friday, October 12, 2007

my stint with SAPPORT

It all started when Anusha asked Sita and me if we could help her in arranging a show with the kids at the Child care centre for the upcoming Board Week. We agreed to get them ready to show their patriotism by performing to A. R Rahmans ‘Vande Mataram’. I had known about SAP’s CSR initiatives and particularly about the child care centre during induction. This was the right chance to go and meet the kids there.

So we went the next weekend to the child care centre. This was my very first experience of being to such a place. I was moved to see their happy faces. Volunteers from HOPE foundation were on their visit and we could see them all dancing to the tunes of Tamil numbers. They greeted us with a ‘Namaste’ and in a minute wanted us to join them in their dance.

This went on for some time, till the volunteers from Hope Left. I tried making friends with them. I was happy to hear some of them talk in English well. With the rest I spoke in broken Kannada… a bit of Tamil, bit of Malayalam…English...Hindi…I really don’t know what language that was. The best way to communicate was sign language though!

One of the kids, Allwyn was new to the place, he had been there for just about 2 days. He was a bit hesitant initially. Slowly he started coming to us and we played for quite some time.

Of the kids, we needed 7 for the performance. This was a bit difficult. Anusha was arranging for the music system, while Sita and I tried to get the kids stand in a row. Sita made Muthu and Jana stand in a row, while I looked for other kids. By the time Chikka Rahul(There are two Rahuls so the smaller one is referred to as Chikka Rahul and the other as Dodda Rahul) and Balaji were to join them they had disappeared. This went on for some time, till we could arrange them in 2 rows and made them listen to the song.

Some wanted the song from ‘Sivakasi’ while others wanted ‘Mugaru Malai’, but nothing to beat the spirit of the song. Once the props were in and practice in full swing, all were happy about ‘Vande Mataram’. Reena their teacher, helped in arranging their practice on week days. When we went the week after, some kids were replaced. The older ones came to us and showed some of the steps while humming the song. We couldn’t really make out the motto, till we

got to know of the real reason. They wanted to show us that they want to be a part of the dance too.

The D-day had arrived! We reached the centre before 7 in the morning. It was so nice to see all of them ready to perform. They were all excited about going to SAP, excited about their dresses, the makeup the camera…so much of energy so much of eagerness. The made us proud by performing beyond expectation.

It is really unbelievable how a bit of guidance, a pinch of attention; a gesture of love and your time can make a difference in the life of these kids. I am happy to be a part of SAPPORT and to be able to contribute in my own small way towards this initiative.

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