Sep 18, 2009

gyan ganga awareness sessions

Awareness programs at school level under awareness phase of Gyan Ganga project on mental retardation have been initiated and are moving in full swing in the local schools of the area. Senior kids of non formal education program, community teachers and other volunteers accompany Vijay Bhaiya to the programs.

They engaged school students in several group activities to inform them about various types of disabilities, and how such kids need to be dealt with. Aids like flip charts, posters etc were used for presentation of concepts. Various group activities are being done with the students to make the program more interactive and enjoyable.  Besides students the principal of the school, teachers and other staff members are taking active part in various activities including group discussions.

came up with stories about some mentally challenged kids residing in their neighborhood. They were advised to bring details of such kids and to motivate the parents of such kids to contact Gyan Ganga project’s office for further consultation, advice and guidance. Parents of mentally challenged kids have already started turning up for guidance and counseling. Kids are taking active part in slogan and essay writing competition. They hanged and pasted their posters on the notice boards and walls of the school building.  Short Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) sessions are held for kids to ascertain their awareness level on issues related to mentally challenged kids. Prizes will be distributed to those who demonstrate exceptional knowledge. Parichay also plans to involve such kids in the awareness program.

Sep 16, 2009

parichay products catalogue (click the photo to see all the products)

Hi Friends,
I have been a regular volunteer with an organisation called Parichay for about 5 years now. Parichay aims to mainstream underprivileged kids into regular education, as also to impart them vocational training. You could make a wonderful difference to their lives by allowing them to showcase their products to the world around you. Here’s an opportunity for you to do your bit, to make a difference to the world around you, (without having to step out from your workplace). J
With Deepawali round the corner, I’ld request you to reach your organisation (HR/CSR department) and have a word with them to allow us to put up a Deepawali stall. The kids at Parichay have prepared some wonderful items – such as diyas, floating candles, gel candles, pooja thaalis, torans, and several other items.
Most of us aren’t able to volunteer because of the paucity of time and several other commitments that hold us back from such activities. Here’s a simple gesture to reach out to masses and convey that you care for the communities around you.
The draft given below catches a glimpse of activities at Parichay. You could have a word about Parichay to the HR/CSR department of your organisation, and forward the following draft. You could also reach me to discuss about Parichay’s initiatives at

We would like to be introduced as:
Parichay Abhigyan Society, a non-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) working with a deprived community.
Parichay started its Bal Vikas Kendra (Child Development Center) in April 2000. Mr. Vijay Bajpai started working for a closed community in Tukmirpur area near Bhajanpura in East Delhi, where most kids never attended a school, and the ones who were able to attend the local state-run schools, were by and large de-motivated given the deploratory condition of such schools.
Started with 9 children, we are now a family of 60 children and their family members; teachers and volunteers, who have helped us in numerous ways. Parichay’s vision is to effect the personal and the social development of children, youth, and adults of the community. 
With the progression of our relationship with the community, which comprises of either Hindus or Muslims, including rickshaw pullers, carpenters, cobblers, hawkers, drum players, embroiders, and laborers working in small industrial units, we strive to:
  • Promote listening, speaking, reading and writing skills and physical fitness.
  • Promote means of self-expression and to contribute to mental and physical health.
  • Cultivate traits such as discipline, courage, devotion, respect and confidence.
  • Promote the sense of worthy use of leisure time.
  • Develop a sense of responsibility, patriotism, and helping others.
  • Develop the sense of brotherhood and friendship.
  • Develop proper understanding of hygienic habits and proper food nutrition.
  • Acquire knowledge and skills of safety and first aid.
  • Develop creative thinking.
  • Help the children to realize the importance of good and bad.
  • Develop an attitude of co-operation, sportsmanship, fair play, and team spirit.
  • Develop leadership and self-reliance.  
We have kicked off several projects like Non Formal Education, Masala Unit, Vocational Training, Handicraft Unit, to name a few. Some of these involve training and creation of many beautiful handmade items by children and women of the community keeping the quality of the products intact. The list is an endless one but few of them are:
Handmade paper bags, Potlies, Handmade paper folders, Cloth folders, Pouches, Posters, Photo Albums, Pen Holders, Diaries, Greeting cards, Shagun envelops, Magazine Holders, Lamp shades, and Printed books etc.
Deepwali specific items include diyas, candles - gel, floating, regular candles, gift packs, torans, chocolates, pooja thalis, and many more.
Thus, we would like to seek your permission to put a stall in your organization of these items. 
Thanks and warm regards,

Know about Parichay:  

Apr 23, 2008

If I have to describe my experience on Parichay-Trip then it's more like "feeling sunshine on my nose in cold bitter dilli ki sardi" …: P because for me this is the most comforting thing I can think of :)
Parichay kids always impressed me with their open heart warm attitude, they welcome everyone with same respect and captivating smiles.. but on this trip I was little more lucky that I saw their "Live Life with Life" attitude.
I used to wonder how they retain their cheerful disposition with so many things happeing in their life and on this trip I got my answers...
When we started our trip it was drizzling outside and when we reach Parichay Center we saw another shower of giggles … I don't think I can confine their excitement for this trip in words :)
Ganga Ghaat become more alive with kids playing with water, pebbles and when sparkling rays of their smile encounter with shimmering water of gaga it was a sight of a wonderland where everything is shining and I was mesmerized :) Every kid in Parichay has different color and for a painter like me it is almost like feeling a painting ..feeling colors .. and I truly believe no painting can be as beautiful as this one ..:)
For me Parichay -Trip is just started :) looking forward to see more colors ,feel more smiles and more love although they have given me so much :) but being human I couldn't resist myself asking for more.


The parichay trip was going to be a whole new experience for quite a few reasons. Packed with 16 kids, their entusiasm was going to match mine at any point of time. I was eager to see the games children play, had in mind a game or two. My game would be something to do with role playing, a military invasion and capture of a hill, or a cab full of pirates in search of the heart of a sea monstor, or Don Quixote attacking a windmill. The thrid idea broght me back to my senses and i smiled at my imagination. I did get to do all those things, but more like a commando and less like a captain with backup. I was later to find out that i was not in hollyood, but more in bolly or molly wood, for we had a don with a haircomb and a god with a cellphone. Both very fond of camera, inadvertently didnt cross each others path during much of the trip. A strong clout followed both the god and the don; and in this plot, i considered myself as ....

To make myself clear, I will shread the cryptic writing style for a while. The god being Selva, belongs to a quaint South Indian town that cooks it just right. It familierity with the food lovers is for discovering a bland curry dish named Sodhi, mixed with rice seved with a more fiery porel.

Don would be Kailash, who unlike bad dons, sticks a comb in his backpocket. Well, has been never identified in a camera... in that line of work, its like that... with a bad hairstyle. He probably learns half his tricks at work and other half at Saloo's saloon. I hope he puts these tricks to good use. I would like a don change & turn himself in, for a desire to win the great indian comedy show.

I considered myself as a pilgrim travelling with the god, a preacher travelling with the don. Though neither of these was entirely my real identity, i acted them out suitably.

The condense of the two day trip can be compared an evening. A kid reaches the playground with an excitement and as the sun sets down returns home with heavy steps. The kiddos, went there all excited and returned as if it was sun set of an evening they wished would not end so soon. And under a decoy of going and comming back sleepy; because I collected information. Any top 3 presumptions made with this statement about my real identiy during the trip may still be wrong.

Just before we reached Delhi, I caught a glimse of Radha sitting in the other cab. It was the same smile with which she would radiate in the classroom, at the end of 2nd hour of my tough-to-digest lecture about relationship between puzzels and life. That promising smile for the future said so much; the big deal was not the trip that costed XXX bucks or the resturant that I was overwhelmed by, the big deal is living in the moment.

Walking like a man and hitting like a hammer, she looked like a confident, dynamic carrer woman in jeans - a side of Moni I had not seen before. I could almost imagine her speak with eloquence and finish like this, "your honour, i rest my case".

Initially we had intended to go to Dehradun also. Dehradun is approximately 60-70 kms from Rishikesh. If children could be exposed to studies related to flora and fauna (wildlife) at that place, surrounded by both in plenty, the educational objective of the trip would be fulfilled from my stand-point. "Once a befuddled a wildlife resercher, found answer for a touch question in a comic book".

We did not go to Dehradun and only person I could teach about trecking was Manu (a volunteer). On our small trek to Nilkanth, we managed to get lost. You know how it starts, "I know a shortcut". A blind man wouldnt get lost on that one. We never found a shortcut, instead a skeleton pointing the long finger towards the road saved us. Perhaps, it was tired from the disco last night, 'the Skeletor disco'. Before we left our friend 'Skeletor', we changed the direction of its finger to the other side.

Looking back, I might have taken Sona to the treck. He might have been able to treck the distance at our pace. If there is a career for him in doing something like this, that would be real cool. Even if he looks like an adventurer to me, there are already too many people doing this stuff for a living. I guess one has to discover something, even if one does not have the formal education, and make a living. Its something about respect for oneself (maybe). To make a two day trip about dicsovery is not childs play.

Is a day at work similar to a day spent mountain trecking? In a work day, a person climbs to a peak and then comes down or finds a resting spot before the sunset. Then some days and on some trecks you dont reach the peak, return before touching it. Are their more similarities between a city day and a treck? While former is about mental exertion & team play, the latter is physical exertion & indivigual will power. In this bleak similarity, i find it important to note one point, "if you enjoy the path and the people along it, you can always return back contented, looking forward to the next day, weather or not you reached the peak".

The trip formed a bond between the cirle of volunteers. Had it not been for Parichay, they would not take my baloneey or agreed to look it from an artistic point of view. And I definately would have called them egotistic for not bearing with me. Parallely, that applies to little ghutkhi as well (her name escapes me). There was something different about her at the Book Fair and now when she went to Rishikesh. For proof lover, its a theorem that states that only the child inside you makes true friends. Sadly it is contradiction with adults is what makes a child. Meaning the child can put you at cross with adults, or wouldnt i be a child everywhere. Parichay, for me thats a place where the child feels safe.

Apr 21, 2008

To me Parichay has been a whole new experience from the very first day I met with Bhaiya. He is so much to tell and i like listening to his experiences about Parichay and about the kids.
Parichay has given a lot to me in such a small time. I feel like being part of a new family. The smile on the faces of kids make me feel good too.
The trip to rishikesh was an altogether different experience for me. Finally i got a chance to remember the name of almost everyone i suppose by now. I tried this thing all the way round.
Enjoyed a lot during the whole trip. The fun at all the places we went was different in its own way. Made new friends and got a chance to know them.
We went to Dehradun and Rishikesh. It was so peaceful and enjoyable with the kids. Enjoyed every moment in the trip from the point we started the journey till we came back was fun.
Treking on the way to Nilkanth was an amazing experience with Naval. Initially i wasn't at all afraid as i knew that we will find a way as we proceed but on reaching the top of the Peak we realized that there was no way we could go. From that point onwards things started to get a little bit horrifying. I was afraid (to tell u the truth) of getting down as it was not easy to get down. But we were lucky to find a way as we were coming down from the top. Gud luck. Then Shouting as if we had discovered America as Columbus did. :)
The lunch , ride in the boat and walking besides those ghat besides the Ganga river was an amazing experience.
Then evening was also filled with loads of masti with the kids near Ganga river and then the arti that we attended in the evening with an awesome weather was tooooo gud to be true.
The fun at lachiwala not to forget when a monkey took our chowmeen from behind :) and also the masti that we did there in the water for so many hours.
All in all i enjoyed a lot being part of all this with such wonderful people at a wonderful place. A whole new experience. Thanks to everyone who were part of it. Thank u so much all...