One day to go!
I am definitely looking forward to finishing tomorrow. I am very sore and weary but has it been worth it? YES!!
Maybe some profound thoughts tomorrow as I reflect on what we have achieved over the last 29 days.
Message from Madurai!
Dear Friends, Trustees, Well-wishers, Sponsors and Supporters of New Dawn India,
Warm greetings to you from the big Vidiyal family!
Hope you are doing well and your family members are fine too. Please do take care. First of all I take this opportunity to congratulate Emma for her achievement in making this virtual cycle ride a grand success. CONGRATULATIONS EMMA! I am just thrilled by your courage and perseverance in reaching your target miles every day. I am sure you all agree that Emma’s spirit was contagious (what a term to use at a terrific time of a pandemic) and Sharmila and I just got enthralled watching her blog videos and messages. THANK YOU EMMA for making this possible for the cause of Vidiyal. You have made us (our children, volunteers and staff) feel part of this ride which we very much appreciate.
As Emma is moving towards the tail end of her expedition, I told to myself that I shouldn’t miss this opportunity to thank you all through this new medium. It gives me great pleasure in sending this ‘THANK YOU’ note to you acknowledging your support and contributions in our work among the most disadvantaged children and their communities. Thank you so very much for your prayers and the love for our children. The biggest poverty today is ‘poverty of love’. The world has become so mechanical and there is no time for loving one another. But we are proud that New Dawn India has become a model in bridging this gap. It amazing that you have translated ‘Love Thy Neighbour’ into action through your kind gesture of loving our children and caring for them through your continued support and encouragement.
I am pleased to let you know that our partnering slum communities and children in our care are keeping safe. There was a big setback in terms of strained livelihoods owing to the lockdown but with the support of the supply of relief kits from Vidiyal / New Dawn they coped well. Of course children enjoyed the various home based activities provided by Vidiyal. Soon we’ll be rewarding their active engagement in these activities. The Reception Home has been fully functional and we rescued and admitted several children who were found stranded and declared as children in need of care and protection. Through Childline we stopped so many Child Marriages and safeguarded girls from forced abuses.
Now the lockdown is eased out much and life is returning to normalcy. We are thinking of reopening our Child Education Centres from 1st July. But we have to be cautious as there is a talk about the ‘Delta variant and Third Wave’. We’ll follow protocols and make it safe for the children. We’re also planning for the distribution of child specific relief kits to sponsored children in a few days’ time.
Let me stop here so that this message can reach you on time. Thanks again for joining hands in defending children’s rights throughout our journey down the years and especially during the most difficult times like the pandemic. For loving one another, distance doesn’t matter. Isn’t it? I googled and found that the distance between Capel St.Mary and Madurai is just 5127 miles only (Vow!). Your kindness and love for our children is very much appreciated. Yesterday we had the monthly volunteers meet and I shared about Emma’s virtual bicycle ride. They got excited and said that they are very proud of Emma Aunty. They expressed their sincere thanks for the kind appreciations received from New Dawn for their services in the community during this pandemic. Our children, volunteers and staff members join me in sending their love and thanks to you. Sharmila and I look forward to hosting you on your next visit to India soon. We send our love and wishes to you.
Take care and stay safe
A Week in the life of a Vidyal Volunteer
I thought you might be interested to see the lengths that the staff at Vidiyal have been going to in order to keep the children occupied and learning during the lockdown. For most academic years the schools have not opened since the first wave, while, for other years, the schools have only been open sporadically. This is a list of the tasks set by Vidiyal the past week. The volunteers continue to do an amazing job in the communities as Jim still has no access.
Some of you will be receiving photos of your child participating.
Beginner: Daily Activity – Storytelling (videos are taken which I’ll send later)
Weekly activity – Drawing images of vegetables
Primary: Daily Activity – Paper Cap making ( Each day one model cap)
Weekly Activity – Creating animal farm
Junior – Daily Activity – Collecting information and writing about one famous scientist each day
Weekly Activity – Craft items with available materials like buttons, bottle caps etc.,
Intermediate – Daily Activity – Simple science experiments ( Each day one experiment)
Weekly Activity – Learning Hand stitching
Senior – Daily Activity – Finding Tamil meaning for 5 English words each day
Weekly Activity – Writing story of a true incident