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The Ritinjali Newsletter
 
December 2017
Happy New Year, from all of us at Ritinjali! May 2018 be the most uplifting and fantastic year yet! 
 

Thank you for your love, support, and continuing to be a part of our journey.

 
A look back at moments from 2017
Our children join formal schooling

It brought us great joy to see over 65 children from our Learning Centres successfully integrated into mainstream schooling. Our centres are located in the midst of sprawling urban slums and getting by is an ongoing struggle for our children and their families. Watching our teachers and children work diligently and cheerfully together - through power cuts, demolition scares, water scarcity, infighting among different groups in the slums - has been an absolute delight. We couldn't be more proud!
A rejuvenated calendar for Staff Professional Development

We organised a comprehensive calendar of teacher workshops throughout the year on lesson planning, education for children with special needs, kinesthetic learning, resource development, story-telling , classroom management, and progress evaluation. Workshops have been participative with teachers preparing presentations and taking part in role plays. Our Learning Centre teachers look after the education and welfare of children who have never attended school. The challenges in such a setup are many and we hope the workshops are able to support our teachers, who already work hard to ensure that their classrooms are hubs of activity.
The boys at the Second Chance School have had an action-packed year! Classes on Life Skills and Work Readiness, numerous sports meets, trips to Agra and Shivpuri, industry visits, internships and jobs at various places, theatre performances, sessions on career guidance and motivation - they seem to have done it all! We also welcomed 8 new boys to the programme this year.
Run for Laadli

Rohit, one of our boys at the Second Chance School finished at fifth place in the Run for Laadli Half Marathon, a joint initiative of the Laadli Foundation and Delhi Police towards spreading awareness of gender inequality and crimes against women.
An afternoon in conversation with Ven. Geshe Lhakdor

Ven. Geshe Lhakdor, a distinguished Buddhist scholar and Director of the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, conducted a session on Ethics in Everyday Life with the students of Second Chance School and Ritinjali staff members. Through examples from day-to-day life, personal anecdotes, and a brilliant sense of humour, Geshe Lhakdor introduced to the students and staff members, the teachings of the Buddha on leading a righteous and content life.
Veerendra begins work at The Oberoi, Gurgaon

Veerendra, who was interning in the Store-keeping Department at The Oberoi, Gurgaon, for the past six months, was offered a job as store-keeper owing to his impeccable work ethics and hard work. Veerendra's supervisor is confident that with more time and work experience, he will definitely be able to move towards bigger opportunities.

 

Annual Sports Day at Pallavanjali

Unadulterated joy as our Second Chance boys soared (quite literally!) at the Annual Sports Day in Pallavanjali at Sohna Road, Gurgaon. Three of our boys – Angad, Surendra, and Arvind won medals in their respective events.
Community Health Programme : Making access to quality healthcare a reality

This year, our communities benefited from 8 health screenings, over 15 successful surgeries, 6 medical awareness talks, free medicine distribution and prescription glasses. We've been able to facilitate surgeries for gallstone patients, acid attack victims, and burns patients, among others. All surgeries have been possible thanks to the wonderful and compassionate team at Sama Hospital, as well as other expert panelists, who have relentlessly helped us shape this programme.
Income Generation and Community Empowerment in Nathupur Pahari
 
 Our community empowerment programme for women in Nathupur Pahari, Gurgaon has strengthened and prospered in its second year. The women attending classes have learned new skills like embroidery and jewellery making, along with basic literacy. Our products were exhibited in different melas and events and garnered positive responses. Interactions with the community as part of the programme have also allowed us to initiate difficult conversations about domestic abuse, reproductive health, and personal hygiene and care. 
Second Chance School - Jhalawar, Rajasthan

Our Second Chance School in Jhalawar, Rajasthan is well over a year old and the journey has been incredible so far. Our centres offer vocational courses on Computer Applications, Tailoring, and Handloom training to people who live in villages near Jhalawar. The students who attend our courses often do so having battled family opposition or stigma. Shanti Kanwar, for instance, was the first student to enrol in our Tailoring Centre. She joined the centre to be able to achieve something for herself. Having faced various forms of discrimination at home, she was determined at 42, to change the course of her life. Shanti Kanwar has started earning Rs 3000/- a month. She says that being able to earn money has boosted her confidence tremendously.
Community Theatre

This year, our Second Chance boys staged a play called “Are You a Man?’’ -  a story about the struggles and challenges of a young man who is confronted between who he wants to be versus what society and culture tells him who he should be. Inspired by personal experiences of 22 boys at the Second Chance School, the play investigates the ongoing push and pull of the boys and young men who do not fit the traditional stereotype of masculinity.

The play was first staged at the Ritinjali Utsav 2017 and then at Pallavanjali, an inclusive school in Gurgaon. The production struck a chord with everyone who watched, receiving standing ovations at both venues. It was incredibly heartening to see the men take the lead in discussion and intervention. At Pallavanjali, one of the men spoke of how he was moved by the play and recognized himself in different characters of the play – how he had been both a victim and a perpetrator in many cases. As the discussions continued, three women in the audience were moved to tell their own stories of abuse and break their silence. We hope to continue asking hard and uncomfortable questions about the ongoing epidemic of a culture of violence in India; to create platforms for dialogue on whether there is just one way to be a real man.

 
Volunteers

Words fall short to describe just how incredible our volunteers have been throughout the year! We've been blessed to have returning volunteers (Patrick, students from SOIL, Viktor, and the teams at AMEX and KPMG), who make everything so much easier and a little more joyful just by their presence. We were also delighted to welcome new volunteers to the Ritinjali family this year - students from George Brown College, Canada and Fiona from Australia - who transformed our Learning Centres completely through experiential and hands-on learning activities for our children.
At Ritinjali we are doing our best, but we can do better with your help. Ritinjali is always looking for helping hands to create a world where everybody gets equal opportunities. If you would like to pay us a visit or volunteer with us, please write to:
 
ritinjali@ritinjali.org | ritinjalionline@gmail.com
Copyright © 2018 Ritinjali, All rights reserved.
Address: A-35 Hill View Apartments, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi - 110057
Email: ritinjali@ritinjali.org | ritinjalionline@gmail.com






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Ritinjali · A-35 Hill View Apartments · Vasant Vihar · Delhi 110057 · India

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