- Gems of Deepalaya
- Sustaining Health
- Running for Hope
- Innovative Education
- Alumni in the Spotlight
- Letter to the Editor
Gems of Deepalaya
Students of Deepalaya Schools made us proud by winning awards in the NGO Mela
organized by YMCA and Dr. Chitkara Memorial Quiz competition organized by St.
Stephens Hospital. They stole the show by winning the maximum numbers of awards
in various events like folk dance, folk song, pot painting, fancy dress, mono
acting etc at the NGO Mela. The children are:
Sitting (Left to Right): Sumit, Komal, Sanju, Archana, Ritu, Suman, Ramesh,
Nitesh Standing (1st Row: L-R) :Sishupal, Meena, Anuradha, Mamta, Priya, Seema;
(2nd Row): Poonam, Mangal
Under the project of REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH FOR YOUNG ADULTS, (supported by Pathfinder
International) trainings were conducted for the ‘to be married boys’
(between the age group of 19 to 21) and Family Welfare Advisors (FWA) of Dwarka
Sector 15 and 16. The objective of the training was to strengthen the skills
of the boys to negotiate with partners and family members to delay birth of
the first child and adopt safe sex practices. All the thirteen sessions were
covered through games and exercises, which were
thought provoking. 47 boys attended the training.
By the end of the training they were able to articulate their vision of an
ideal family that they want to be a part of.
The workshop for the FWA was organized to educate them about their misconceptions
on issues like conception, contraceptive methods, infertility, abortition etc.
Total 17 participants (10 females and 7 males) attended. 5 of them were couples.
They were first taken to the nearby referral centers to learn about the various
facilities available. A session on sex determination and use of pregnancy kit
was also demonstrated. The legal complications of the same were also discussed.
The post training test on issues like - contraceptive methods, RTI/STD, importance
of delaying first child/spacing second child etc. showed a sharp increase in
correct answers. The workshop ended with distribution of prizes and referral
booklets to all participants.
Overall the workshop was successful in its objective. Most of the participants
remarked that they will now be able to “effectively counsel, motivate
and refer their clients for their various needs.”
Running For Hope
Running is no longer the athlete’s delight but has also become Deepalaya’s
delight. Keeping the track record of participating in Marathons, Deepalaya participated
in two such events in the month of February.
On 5th February over a hundred Deepalaya students participated in the Terry
Fox Run, hosted by the Canadian High Commission. A fundraiser for cancer patients,
this run is held annually in the memory of Terry Fox, a Canadian hero who died
of cancer. Since he was diagnosed, Fox decided to run across Canada to raise
funds for research and to create awareness on the deadly disease. In his memory,
his friends started the idea of the Terry Fox Run, a run of hope to fight against
On 12th February Deepalaya participated in the Delhi International Marathon.
Led by a group of special children, over 400 students, teachers,
social workers and other well wishers participated in the seven kilometer Tiranga
(Tricolor) Run. They ran for the cause of the physically and mentally challenged.
The message that went across was “they are not Disabled but Differently
Abled”. The funds raised from the Marathon will be utilized for further
strengthening Deepalaya’s services for the challenged sections of the
Learning is indeed a Joy
Since May 2005, the “Innovative Methodology for the Education of Children
at Risk” project is being implemented at Shalimar Bagh ( North West Delhi).
Supported by Winrock International the project aims to improve the informal
education systems and to eradicate the worst form of child labour. At present
more than a hundred street and working children are being taught at four study-centers.
A wide range of innovative teaching methodologies and aids are used to make
the syllabus easily comprehensible and learning more enjoyable for the children.
These include drama, games, story telling, music/dance etc. Various special
events were also held to promote the overall development of a child.
A series of activities titled ‘Ab Ayega Majaa’(It will be Fun)
were held in January. All the children did exceptionally well in oral activities
and keenly participated in plays, poem recitation, games etc. However they ended
to avoid written work. This event was conceptualized to improve their writing
skills. It included drawing, colouring, playing with clay and writing competitions.
Most of the children complained of finger ache while writing, so certain finger
exercises were also included. These exercises and activities were initiated
keeping in mind the forthcoming examinations in April’06 where the children
would have to write a lot. Much to our joy, after the initiation of Ab Ayega
Majaa significant improvement has been observed among the children.
The next event was a four-day Theatre workshop organized in the month of February.
It was conducted by resource persons from National School of Drama (NSD). The
objective was to create awareness on issues like importance of education, Child
Rights, gender equity, HIV/AIDS etc. among the children. Part of the academic
curriculum was also covered through the workshop.
The children enjoyed the sessions thoroughly. Apart from learning acting, painting,
collage making, music etc they also attended personality development sessions.
Credit Card Update
Good news for credit card holders. Sending a donation /renewing your sponsorship
support to Deepalaya is just a click away. You can now issue authorizations
through an email. Please include your name, card number, name of the issuing
Bank, expiry date and the amount to be deducted. In case of regular donations,
please specify the periods at which deductions are to be made. The receipt for
your donation will be despatched within the next two days.For details please
write in to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also walk into our office at Janakpuri
to make donations throu card.
In January 2006, students of Deepalaya School, Kalkaji Extension got an opportunity
to attend a recital by Shri. Abhay Rustom Sopori, eminent Santoor player. The
aim was to bridge the gap between today’s youth and the great heritage
of Indian classical music. An interactive session followed the recital, where
Shri. Sopori explained different aspects of the various stringedments.
Five students from the school; Swapna, Deepa, Renuka, Khusboo and Neelam (class
VI and VII) are also undergoing training from eminent Odissi dancer Ms.Sonal
Mansingh. Odissi is one of the oldest surviving forms of Indian classical dance
from the eastern state of Orissa. Both the programs have been organised by our
partner organisation Yoh (YR).
Thank you Abhayji, Sonalji and all at YR. Your involvement will ensure that
the children will carry forward the glorious tradition of Indian culture.
Support on Wheels
The Foundation Children of Tomorrow, Netherlands has donated an eight-seater
van and a generator to the RJRN Deepalaya School. The school caters to around
350 children from the neighbouring slums. During the summers, frequent power
cuts make the classroom activities difficult. The generator will certainly ease
the severe summer heat. The van is to be used to transport the students for
medical checkups, to cultural programmes etc.The Foundation has earlier donated
a bus, specially to meet the needs of the physicallenged.
Citizen of Tomorrow
Interact Club the Rotary sponsored service club for children has been functioning
at the Deepalaya School, Kalkaji Extension since 2003. It is a platform to incorporate
responsibility and leadership among the children. And over the years our children
have indeed imbibed alues.
In October’05, 23 members of the Interact Club performed a street play
in the community to raise awareness on how to have a ‘Safe Diwali’.
In the school too, they communicated the message and 55% of the school children
did not burst crackers. Instead they celebrated Diwali with sweets and diyas
(earthern lamps). The children have also been running a cleanliness drive in
the school. Dustbins were bought with their club money and placed in the school
playground. They monitor each and every classroom and at the end of the month
the best classarded.
The members also regularly wish different Embassies like Czech Republic, Malaysia,
Pakistan, and Kenya etc on their National days. Fighting against illiteracy,
the students are taking adult literacy classes in the community. Right now they
have 10 students in the age group of 27 and 62.
In the month of Jan’06, sports events were organized for the physically
and mentally challenged children of various West Delhi locations. Supported
by the British High Commision the events aimed to help the children in exploring
their inner strength and to develop positive attitudes among parents and communities.
It is also an attempt to encourage the special children to face the worldently.
Around a hundred special children (including mentally and physically challenged,
hearing and visually impaired) took part. The event included the 100 meter biscuit
race, softball throw, back race, relay race, three legged race and tricycle
race. Each and every child performed wonderfully in the sports meet. This was
an eye opening experience for the parents, siblings and the entire community
who joined in large numbers to watch the games and cheer the players.
Alumni in the Spotlight
I am Lata Srivastava in my final year of Diploma in Special Education from
Delhi Society for the Welfare of Mentally Retarded Children. I am also pursuing
B.A. through correspondence at Delhi University.
My father works in a private company and my mother is a housewife. She was
earlier working as a teacher at Deepalaya Non- Formal class. I have two younger
sisters .They are both studying. I come from a community where education of
girls is not given importance. But my parents believed otherwise. With Deepalaya’s
support they have been able to achieve their goal.
Throughout my schooling, it has been Deepalaya’s guidance that kept me
going. Teachers always encouraged us to plan out our lives and helped us to
meet our expectations. I became interested in the field of Special Education
because of my contact with Deepalaya. But pursuing a formal training in this
field was a challenge because of the high costs. At this juncture Deepalaya
came forward to provide me the sponsorship from Mr. Jyoti Sagar, a trusted friend
of Deepalaya. This support realized my dream of higher education. I have scored
a first division in my first year. Deepalaya has always stood beside me and
encouraged me in each and every step of my life. Thank you Deepalaya and Jyoti
Sagar Sir. I am confident that with your support I will be able to fulfill my
dream of becoming a professor.
Letter to the Editor
“Heading a group of seventeen students I got an opportunity to visit
Deepalaya’s Gole Kuan project in South Delhi.The educational trip was
a great learning experience for us-the Child Welfare group. Our interest was
in programmes catering to the demands of marginalized section of the society.
We were impressed to see how Deepalaya is working on these issues. It was also
overwhelming to see the support and participation of the slum dwellers in Deepalaya’s
activities proving its success in community mobilization. Really there are so
many things to learn from Deepalaya, the pioneer in enabling self reliance among
the underprivileged section of the society.”
Bhavna Negi, Lecturer,
Institute of Home Economics,