REUNIONREVISITING OLD FRIENDSA project for DFC 2012by Anando
RATUL Last year , our group had worked with the students of Hanshi Khushi, a school for mentally challenged children. We had taught them craftsSANJIB which they were later able to use PIYALI for their annual sale. SUROJIT This time we included a few more friends into our group. MAMONI GARGI DEEPTI
Last year was our firstexposure to children who aredifferently able. And just likethe name Hanshi Khushi ,which means “smiling andhappy” in Bengali, we were alsovery “hanshi khushi “ about ourintervention .We really wantedto go back and do more atHanshi Khushi.So when the opportunitypresented itself, we decidedto once again make this ourproject.A visit with Hanshi Khushiprincipal Urna Bose, convincedus that we were on the rightpath.
We decided that wewould take our project astep further this time.Now we would also teachthe teachers , so thatthey could continue towork with the studentsafter we had gone.We also wanted to makedecorations for the annualsale and help out at thestalls on the day o theevent.
We divided our group according to the tasks at hand…… One group would come to Hanshi Khushi for an hour three times a week before their own schools started. Another group, comprising of those who could not come to the school because of their own school timings, would take on the responsibility of finishing the products over the weekend classes at Anando and at home. Our other friends at Anando were also invited to join in ……the more the merrier we felt!
With everyone’ssuggestions , a list wasmade of all the items wewould like to make,based on our previousexperience.We found we were moreconfident now as weknew what to expect!
We were soon back atthe school!The students were sohappy to see usagain……and we wereexcited to meet themagain!They seemed to havegrown up a lot in this oneyear……..
The “teachers “soon got towork ! Westarted withpainted claypots.The pots werefirstsandpaperedand thenpainted with abase coat.
Then they were sponged with paint and finallyvarnished to create brightly coloured lowervases.
We also usedprintingtechniques tocreatenotebookcovers…….
Later, we coveredthe notebooks andthen wrapped themwith plastic film toprotect the covers.
Pinky and Deeptiworked with theHanshi Khushieducators to teachthem how to makejute dolls.
On the days we could notcome , our friends fromAnando filled in for us.They helped the studentsto complete the pictureframes we had made.
Over theweekends ,we workedatcompletingandfinishingtheproducts.
CALENDARS MORE RAMES Some of the other things weJAPANESE made……DOLLBOOKMARKS
It was a proud momentto see all the productson display on the dayof the annual sale……
It was a good experience overall. Wefound the children could do so muchmore now and we too were not as unsureas before.Our organizing skills could have beenbetter…it was more difficult trying toco-ordinate with the larger number ofteam members, especially as we wouldmeet only once a week.Our list of things to make was toolong…we didn’t have enough time to makeeverything on it!It was not possible for us to help at thestalls because most of the guests camein the morning when we ourselves wereat school!