Of joy of sending ‘your’ kids to school

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 01 Jul 2018 10:47:59







THAT day as the schools re-opened after summer vacation, her joy knew no bounds. For, five of ‘her’ kids had joined a school for the first time. She had seen them playing on sidewalk. On her exercise rides on bicycle, she had looked at them and even smiled at them. Slowly, they had grown friends of sorts. She, a medical doctor by profession and a fitness freak, rides her bicycle every morning -- to stay fit and also perhaps to see the city. On one of such rides, she encountered those bright kids whose parents were vending merchandise on sidewalks. Slowly, she started motivating those kids to go to school, something they had never tried. Her persistence paid off and the families agreed to send the kids to school. Then began effort to locate a school in the neighbourhood. And finally, all those kids were ‘admitted’ to a Corporation school. That morning when the kids went to school, this young lady was so happy that she could not find words to express her sentiment. “I am so happy”, she said, and fell silent, submerged by an innate sense of joy that went beyond the mundane. 


What an example of altruism! What a sense of personal social responsibility! For this young lady, whose name has ‘dream’ entwined not just in letters but also in spirit, it was one moment that brought to her a sense of achievement few other things could offer. As she ‘worked’ on this project of sending the footpath kids to schools, she had remembered her own six-year-old at home. Her kid has all the comforts in the world, but ‘her’ kids on the sidewalk did not have the simple facility of attending a school. So, when those little ones trooped into the school, she did not know what to say because she perhaps did not know how to look at the little event that may not fetch anybody’s attention.

But then, we do not do everything in life only to attract attention. We recognise certain things, certain issues, certain emotions, and respond to their call. Working to send the footpath kids to school was one such moment to which she did not and need not have to seek anybody’s attention. Her inner voice called her and she attended its urging. That’s all! -- all one can say.

Such inner calls we may hear umpteen times, but may not respond to those at all. Our whole life could be spend without responding to that inner call, to that urging whose voice only we can hear internally. But then, there is a vast difference between hearing and listening. Not only did this young woman hear her inner voice but also listened to it and acted on its urging. The result, as now we know, is scintillating -- as ‘her’ kids are now in school, looking forward to a life of learning, looking to a future in which they would know how to convert chances into sure-shot channels of success, and hints into concrete opportunities.
Factually, all of us can have such opportunities not just to hear our inner voice but also to listen to its urgings. But very rarely do we do that, very rarely do we pause to hear our inner voice, very rarely do we respond to it. When such people abound, good action rarely takes place. But when we start listening to our inner voice, then the result shows in the form of a better culture of the larger society.

In most places, schools run by civic bodies are looking for students -- for free education. Yet, countless lakhs of poor children don’t ever get to go to school because there is no motivation and no information as well. If each one of us decides to ‘send’ at least two such kids to a school, then our education will assume a heavenly stature.

Why don’t we ever think of this as a project of lifetime? Just two kids from deprived backgrounds. If we do that, every kid would find a school and a roof over the head for good one-third part of the day. The school is certainly a warmer place than playing and loitering aimlessly on sidewalks and in sidelanes of villages and towns and cities. And once such kids start going to school and once their parents are properly supported and motivated, the kids’ lives would change dramatically.