Saturday, November 12, 2011

One day camp @ Vergal Trust, Kancheepuram

“Well Begun is Half done” – There can be no other apt sentence to describe Ilampirai’s initiative at Vergal Trust, Kanchipuram.
It all started with meticulous planning for more than a week and drafting a detailed agenda. The roles and responsibilities were clearly distributed among volunteers. We were all eagerly looking for the D-Day. The plans were rehearsed during our travel to Kanchipuram and we reached there proudly wearing our Ilampirai identity cards.
We were welcomed by Mrs.Nalini and other coordinators of the Vergal Trust and the children had made a special welcome chart for us. We decided to finalize on the agenda while the children completed their prayers and proceeded for breakfast. We were also given sprouted beans for refreshing ourselves.
Once the stage was all set, the children started the day’s proceedings by singing songs. Sundar initiated our agenda by giving a brief introduction about Ilampirai and without any delay; we split the groups of children into 6 subgroups based on the colors in rainbow (Violet, Blue, Green, Yellow, Orange and Red) with 2 Ilampirai members taking care of each group. Each team was given a chart and asked write a team name followed by the names of all team members. In addition to this, they were asked to identify a team song which they can sing on stage.
The first activity planned was Theme based discussion in which a topic was provided to each team to discuss upon. Initially the volunteers gave an idea of what the topic is all about and basic information on how to involve in a group discussion. The topics were mainly on social awareness and basic general knowledge. Later the team members were asked to discuss among themselves about various points they can think based on the theme. The children also learnt the importance of knowledge sharing and listening to other’s opinions.
Final phase of this activity involved each team preparing a skit based on their theme and presenting it to the audience after introducing their team and team song. The children displayed a lot of enthusiasm and presence of mind while presenting their topics and they were judged based on various parameters.
The next activity was a very interesting one which we named as ‘passing info’. This activity aimed at making the children understand and learn the art of listening. The children were asked to sit in a circle and first child was told a small story which contains some names, places and things. The child has to retell the story to the next child without missing any of the key items told and this goes on till the last child. The last child in the group has to tell the complete story to the group. The relevance of this story to the original version is judged. Yellow and Red teams excelled in their presentations and grabbed the honors.
Though all of the teams were unable to convey the exact story and ended up with many hilarious versions, both the children and we, volunteers learnt from this practical example about the importance of listening skills.
Following passing info activity, there was a small talk by Ramya on how to prepare well for exams and to tackle exam fever. Students interacted well and took some valuable tips on the same. Just after this session, we had a lunch break. We were served with very delicious and healthy food which we ate alongside the children. We were impressed to see that not even a small amount of food was wasted by anyone. Refreshed by a great lunch, we were ready to start our afternoon interactive sessions.
The first on the agenda was Treasure Hunt. While the morning sessions were on, some of our volunteers had made arrangements for this event. They hid some items wrapped in a gift wrapper at various locations in and around the venue. Each team was given a list with clues leading to the identification of items. The children were asked to first identify them and go in search for the items. Though there was a delay due to rain, a small break was sufficient to complete this event. It was fun to see children running around to find the maximum number articles. We had the Violet and Orange teams triumphant with 4 items each.
The centerstage was handed over to our quiz master Alagar. He kept the children and audience enthralled with questions from various fields. The round which involved Tamil grammar and Tamil authors impressed everyone and we were held by surprise when the children were equally good in cracking the questions. The first round was done in counter clockwise direction and the following one in clockwise. The final round was a rapid fire with consecutive questions fired at each team and they have to answer all of them as soon as possible. After an hour long of battle of brains, the Blue and Green Team emerged victorious.
As we came to the close of the day, motivational videos were screened to the children and the messages had a great impact on them. Songs were sung by the children frequently in order to keep themselves engaged. There was also an interesting rain clap where the children started clapping using one finger and then increasing the finger count by one and finally we could hear a downpour from the claps and the rain clap subsided to a drizzle and cam to a halt.
Another aspect is the habit to gain the attention of children and maintaining an order by saying “Hi” and responding with “Hello”. Though it was done very frequently, it indeed provided an interest.
The organizers of the Vergal Trust gave a small speech in which they praised the way in which we presented various topics in different perspective. Prizes were distributed for all the events and each team had their photos taken with their volunteers. Since we had diwali around the corner, the volunteer who had planned for an art & craft class presented hand made greeting cards to the children and volunteers. The camp ended with a motivational song, “We Shall Overcome”, the anglicized version of “Hum Honge Kamyaab”. All the children bade us Good Bye with wishes for Diwali.
This report is incomplete without thanking all the volunteers who had planned and executed this to perfection. There were a lot of learnings to take back and improve upon as well. Being the first activity after Ilampirai being registered as a Public Charitable Trust, it was indeed a successful one and a motivational factor for all such initiatives to follow.
To sum it up, it was a worthy Sunday for Ilampirai to be proud of.
The END... Great team effort and all our preparation worked out more than expected...

Written By - Param ( Ironicz)

No comments:

Post a Comment