For 13-year-old Julia Mone, assisting mentally challenged kids at NGO Aavhan, Mahim, meant effective utilisation of her summer holidays, whereas for Vedant R (17), organising personality development camps and forming word building quizzes at Vedant Welfare Foundation (VWF) will help him be a better person.
Coming out of their comfort zones to help the needy and knowing more about the neighbourhood is what defines the coming summer holidays for these children. With schools and NGOs encouraging such behaviour and calling for volunteers to assist them at social work, students have discovered new interests in spending time with under-privileged kids who may require a helping hand.
“It gives me the necessary exposure that would help me in life. I will learn to be selfless, empathetic towards others and not take things for granted,” said Ishita Ahuja (13), who will be going on a one-day trip to the SOS Village in Alibaug organised by Cathedral and John Connon School in the holidays. They will spend the entire day with the children at the village, make some craft items and also do grass-cutting.
“By going to such places, school kids are sensitised towards the need of these children from different backgrounds. They develop empathy and also will be able to help them,” said Lata Balaji, a teacher at Cathedral and John Connon School for the past 10 years and also the trip organiser.
For some, the reason behind opting for such an internship goes beyond helping and feeling sensitised. For Madhav Warawdekar (18), helping NGO NAGAR will enable him to establish his base in the subject of international relations, in which he is majoring at Flame institute, Pune. He aims to work with multi-national NGOs and inter-governmental organisations in the future and thinks this internship will be his stepping stone towards it.”My internship involves researching on a particular programme or issue being dealt with in the city and collate, analyse and proof-read the reports based on it. I would also make some presentations and follow up events that happen in the city,” he said.
There are also some who have thought of going beyond their boundaries to make a mark of difference in someone else’s life. Working with Family Welfare Organisation, an NGO based in an Army cantonment in Rajasthan is Rhea Dangwal, who aims to give vocational training to wives of Army jawans. “Being an Army officer’s child, I have a strong fondness towards this initiative. I love to teach and this organisation would use my oratory skills to provide vocational and soft skills training to women who have a low social standing,” she said.