The twinkling eyes, the curious faces, the beautiful smiles and the excitement in the air have occupied my thoughts and mind for hours now. I visited an orphanage yesterday. The Udyaan Care, home to 33 kids was the place where we met, and organised a small session of story – telling and drawing.
The place was packed with action when my friends of Social Potpourri (SP) decided to celebrate their venture’s 2nd anniversary with the kids who have no parents to look after them. The reasons for their abandonment maybe different or unique but presently they hold no importance in my thoughts. At the end of the day I am happy that they are being looked after well by some of the considerate and caring people of the society.
This was not my first time to an orphanage but I feel guilty that I have been ignorant on this front. My Mum would buy sets of notebooks, pencils, erasers and boxes of sweets on my birthday and take me to Surya, the nearby ‘children care-center’ to share and distribute it among those who did not have much. My first memories of the place were scary and had made me thoughtful for days. I remember asking her sadly – “Don’t these children have parents? She had said a plain and placid ‘No’.” I had felt a lump in my throat.
Asking no more I had strengthened my hold on my Mumma’s hands, I knew how important she was for me and my life without my parents was unimaginable. (Till date, it remains the same.) I remember, on day one I did not interact much with the kids, maybe it was out of fear or my hesitation because I had felt that these kids were different. However on the subsequent visits which happened after gaps of three or four months, I had even offered to share some of my old toys with the kids. We continued the birthday ritual of distributing sweets and notebooks but with other occupancies in life and changing priorities, these trips became lesser and lesser.
The memories flush down again; the first visit had made me sulk for few days. I had been lost because I was not able to accept the fact that some of the children did not have parents to look after them. I would wonder whom did these kids share their problems to, who looked after them, who hugged them when they cried, who bought them toys, who took them for outings or who cooked food for them… ? There were questions so many!! With time, I had got my answers.
Yesterday, it all came back, the times lost in the pages of my life. I felt I was so comfortable in offering hand to the little kids at Udyaan Care. I interacted with them, appreciated them and in less than three hours I made myself wanted among the chirpy lot. They all wanted me to come back and spend time with them.
I really wish to do something for those who need a helping hand. Some of my views which I wish everyone should ponder over…
Every child deserves a chance. They have no parents with no fault of their own, so why should they suffer. The number of orphans is increasing and the rate of adoption refuses to budge. Not just the statistics but the gleam in the faces that I saw yesterday, I wish to bring this up. Can the present generation think more about adoption or extended parenting? No, I am not suggesting anyone to stop having babies. Of course, the biological linkages are of utmost importance but at the same time can we act parents in small ways.
Maybe we could spare some time from our busy schedules and spend some time with these kids. Those who are well-off, maybe could support them financially and take care of some of their needs. Others who wish to have a large family could step out and adopt a child too. I know it’s not easy and as flawless as written or suggested, but there can be many ways in which we could help or do a bit. I have resolved to start in my own way. When the two kids that I met yesterday, told me that they wanted to know about engineering, I promised to guide them.
Special Friends for our children…
Another thing that I would like to suggest is how about taking our kids to these shelter-homes where our children may learn to accept the goodness of life. Once in a while, take your children to meet the underprivileged or special kids just to see how they react and interact with them. This will serve two important purposes, one our kids will realise that they are blessed to have parents and secondly they will turn out to be socially considerate.
I was surprised to know that my friend’s daughter does not talk to the children whom she thinks they are poor. How shocking! The kids had started becoming aggressive already and now the air of disparity has already seeped in their life so early. We have to beat this and let it out. Taking our kids to the orphanage will not only win company for the special kids there but also our own pampered ones. They will be able to connect with truths of life, it will make them grounded, they will learn to make friends with one and all and maybe later in life make them giving and kind in nature.
I am sure we all look forward to turn our kids into good citizens of tomorrow. Let’s make them aware and responsible towards the society but this will not happen until we become one ourselves.
Engineer by Profession and an ABC by Passion, Manjulika Pramod would elaborate it as Artist, Blogger and a Crazy one for Books. Putting it other way round she loves to travel and write travelogues, she plays with colors to vent out her creative pangs. She is also an avid reader and out to spread the reading virus. She works with a telecom MNC and in little spare times, she reviews books and interviews authors. Manjulika has a story published in Chicken Soup for the Soul to her credit and you can catch her on her blog.