A Story A Dayhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/mumbai/a-story-a-day/

A Story A Day

When 74-year-old Kulin Vora read a newspaper report about a little boy who lost his way home years ago,he had a different take on it.

This storyteller spins a page-a-day calendar for children,complete with parables,puzzles and quizzes

When 74-year-old Kulin Vora read a newspaper report about a little boy who lost his way home years ago,he had a different take on it. He saw the story of a brave three-year-old who remained calm amid a crisis and subsequently triumphed,by returning to his mother. In other words,Vora found a story with a moral— something that he could retell children across countries and nationalities.

Soon,Vora began to put together a plethora of stories,fictitious and factual,retold with an out-of-the-box twist and a message for young minds. This year,he has put his lifetime’s creative work to good use,and conceptualized a unique calendar called ‘Butterfly – the kids’ own calendar’. The calendar— compiled on a monthly basis— reaches out to children with simple stories and powerful messages. So every day of every month,you turn to a new page and a new story often relating to the significance of that particular day. Hence,on Mother’s Day you’d read about Lord Ganesh’s love for Parvati and on Children’s Day it would be a quick biography of Jawaharlal Nehru.

“Today’s children lack constant communication with their parents. Often both parents are working and the children are left at crèches,day care centres or with maids from a very young age. As a result,they grow up on their own. This is the hole I believe should be filled,if we want to make them responsible citizens of future,” says Vora. He adds that he spent days talking to busy mothers and finding out what their children lacked. “Soon I realised the most important part of growing up is listening to simple stories with a moral,” he says. He wistfully remembers the days when parents and kids had that luxury: “My calendar attempts to give kids that — small interactive stories,accompanied with questions and puzzles and colourful pictures,” he says.

Advertising

Vora’s 12-issues calendar-set is available on a yearly subscription of Rs 1,200. Each month’s issue is couriered to subscribers. Stories covered in the issues are often of latest news and current affairs— all presented with a difference. Vora points out,“And that’s not all,to capture the child’s interest,we have a question-answer session at the end of each story. If a child replies correctly to the questions and return it to us,we send him a small gift too.”

The calendar,which is catching on quickly,already has about 150 subscribers. Vora says,“Recently,the mayor praised my attempt and that gave me the confidence to think of expanding. We are planning to release the issues in Devnagri scripts too. Also there is a thought about introducing these calendars in schools and Anganwadis. If all goes well,we’ll soon be marketing them abroad too.”

Vora believes that his calendar is a gift to working mothers. “I maintain a constant dialogue with mothers,and have learnt that my calendars are very popular with children. Mothers love it and believe that these moral stories bring value to their kids’ upbringing. What more do I need!” he laughs.

To subscribe to the Butterfly calendars call 6452 4089

Download the Indian Express apps for iPhone, iPad or Android