SUMMER VACATION is here! From 1st June 2012 till the end 30th June 2012, 3 fun-filled camps have been organized for the children to make their holidays more enriching and fulfilling.
Football Summer Camp
First up, we have the Football Summer Camp, held in Salaheri School, which involves 39 boys from 5 different schools. Football trainings, carried out by Shri Ram professional coaches, are held from 8.30am-1030am daily except for Sundays.
Being able to run around the field and kicking the football brought tremendous joy and smiles to their faces. The response for this camp was overwhelming, as several children could not be accepted due to lack of space. For those who signed up though, they received proper equipment, as well as formal trainings, to play the sport in the correct manner.
You might wonder why there is a need to organize football camp when children can play it anytime and anywhere. In Mewat, conditions are not favorable for sports due to lack of proper playing ground. Lands here are mostly used for agriculture and homes. In addition, the children here do not have the habit of playing sports during leisure time, as they are usually given household chores to complete. Hence, this camp serves to provide children in Mewat with basic football training in the hopes of sparking interest in sports, and a way for them to unwind themselves.
Jashn-e-Taleem 2012 (IBM Kidsmart Summer Camp)
Following, the IBM Kidsmart Summer Camp is also taking place in all the schools in 19 villages. Held last year, the camp enjoyed tremendous success. This year, it has return with better and enhanced activities in place for the children to enjoy. Volunteers have been trained for 4 days to build up the aesthetic aspect of the children through scheduled drama, crafts, poetry and other activities. Since this is a vacation, the camp will definitely do away with textbooks and focus on what the textbooks do not teach. Many have failed to notice the importance of aesthetics, as they do not see the value in it. We agree that having knowledge is the basic foundation before we can develop further skills. However, purely imparting knowledge and no practical application will not do justice to what they have learnt. Hence, brushing up their creativity is an important step to train them to think out of the box and learn how to relate textbook knowledge to their daily lives.
For our camps, fun-filled activities have been arranged for the children to utilize their creativity and present what they have never thought they could achieve. On the first day of the camp, we were able to view how the children express their ideas through drawings in the art classes. Seeing how cheery they were when they showed us their drawings, we have come to realize that these children have a lot of untapped potential which has not been uncovered probably due to the lack of opportunities. This camp can only help to make them more aware of the talents hidden and hopefully they will be able to use them someday when the opportunity arises.
Girls Summer Camp
Lastly, there is the Girls Camp which occurs at the same places as the IBM Kidsmart Summer Camp. These 2 camps are held concurrently and girls of ages 11-15 have the choice of choosing which camp they want to join. For the Girls Camp, they will be imparted new skills such as art, crafts, designing, clay modeling and science activities. These activities are carried out with the purpose of helping the girls grow physically and mentally, as well as provide them with the opportunities to express their creativities. We believe that if we are able to prove to families the benefits of educating girls and equipping them with adequate knowledge, they will be more receptive into sending their girls to school.
The camps have been formulated with the intent of providing children with the medium to pick up life skills in a delightful way. We believe that by varying the learning methods, we will be able to spark the “fire” within the children and uncover their strengths. By making their abilities known to them, children will be able to attain greater self-awareness and thus gaining confidence in whatever they do. And eventually, develop an ambition to work towards.
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The 12th edition of Mewat Mondays is brought to you by our interns, Joan, Lyndon and Galvin, who believe that education isn’t all about knowledge but is also about application of what has been taught. As part of their field research, they will be spending time in the 19 villages, and will gladly share pictures and anecdotes from these experiences. They can be reached at Joan.firstname.lastname@example.org, Lyndon.Lingbaoan@srf-limited.com and Galvin.Tay@srf-limited.com respectively.