The teachers from Sharana’s Early Childhood Programs, which includes a creche for babies and day care activities for older children, took our kids for a visit to the park this past week. Three staff members and one volunteer accompanied 30 children to Pondicherry’s Botanical Gardens (the very ones made all the more famous in the movie, The Life of Pi).
The children played games: healthy eating puzzles, monkey games, ball games. The teachers talked to the older children about the names of species and trees in the garden.
The children were served a special lunch, and enjoyed their 3-hour outing in the park!
Sharana’s Sponsorship Program is one of the largest, and longest-established program that the organization runs. It also takes much attention and care, all the way from screening beneficiaries, to matching children with donors, file-maintenance and follow-up, writing annual letters and sending cards, organizing Summer Camp activities, and more. Amidst all this work there are some distinct moments of pleasure and achievement: successful completion of studies (as for example in the case of Kanchana)–and the visits of Godparents.
Godparents are those who support the individual children in Sharana’s Sponsorship program. John Peter, Ravi Anand, and Kaladevi arranged for the visit of six Godparents to meet their sponsored beneficiaries this past week. They came bearing gifts and much goodwill. After a meeting with the social workers, they visited the Infant Jesus Homework Help Center and attended the children’s yoga and dance performances. Next, they visited the Solidarity Shop:
Last but not least, they visited the Aranganur creche:
and planted a tree there that will grow just as their sponsored children will!