Ranjane Village workshop experience as narrated by Puneet

It was an amazing and a touching experience for to spend a day with so many naughty, yet cute kids. It was a great feeling to see all those kids with a HUGE smile on their faces all day! Frankly, I didn't expect the activities that we all had planned, to run so smooth throughout the workshop; and obviously the credit goes to the great teamwork exhibited on the day. I remember Mr. Koppikar telling me while he was dropping me back, that he was quite nervous the day before, as he wasn't too sure if sufficient number of people would turn up to pull it off. But by the end of it, I think he was one of the happiest people in the team. :)

By the time we reached the village, the kids had already assembled in a temple. They welcomed us by singing a 'swagatam' song, sung by a few girls, and a few of them had prepared speeches for the Republic Day. One of the most touching moment was when a cute little girl came up with a speech in English! I just stood there in awe listening to her. It was quite evident that so many of these little kids do have the right potential to make it big in life...and I was saying to myself - 'Yes We Can' !! :):)

Then we all introduced ourselves to them. Thankfully we had a few people in our team who were comfortable with the local language, which made things a lot easier and possible indeed. We started off with the Ice-Breaking game - Balloon Burst, wherein, the kids were divided according to the age groups. It was fun to watch them play. Next we had a quiz, and trust me when I say, we were literally bowled over by their prompt answers, knowledge and general awareness. I can recall a kid telling me about Sunita Williams when we were telling them about Kalpana Chawla!!! To top it all, they knew about OBAMA as well!! I also remember Janardan asking me if we had got at least a few difficult questions to save the day!! :) :) I think me and Apurva gotta come up with some better questions for the next time if we keep any such activity again. :)

Then the activity that became the limelight of all - 'Unity in Diversity'. Ashima must be wondering how many times I'll mention this, but I'd still like to reiterate that it was a Great effort from her side as she didn't miss out on anything to make it a success. The kids loved exploring their creativity which was quite evident by their excitement while they were preparing the charts. :) Then came the time when it was our chance to sit back and enjoy while the kids performed a few plays and dance. We got to watch some seriously amazing acts put together by the kids and we couldn't help but keep looking at them with unbelievable eyes! :)

Mr. Koppikar ended the day with his wise words for the kids, inspiring them by the famous personalities who had made it big in life starting from a scratch.

Some words from Ashima about the workshop

Another exciting and fulfilling workshop and it makes me feel so content!!!

I realized after getting back that moments to visit places like these for a godforsaken cause don't come often -and when they do they are etched in our memories for a long time to come. Both these workshops have been a revelation of a sort. The kids are cute and naughty like Puneet said ;) but at the same time they enthuse and motivate people like us raised with all the possible comforts in life. Their sweet innocent smiles have deep stories behind yet they are charming and so full of life.

I am so grateful to everybody for making all the efforts and taking out time of your busy schedules to spend time with the kids. I am sure it meant a lot to them!!!I could make that out from their delighted and overjoyed faces

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