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A special Sunday!

2016-08-21         SHUKLAB

Last Sunday I was invited to a very special event, a lunch gala hosted by the Parikrma Alumni. Some students of the first two batches rallied around, called all their classmates to organise this grand event. Narayana who is a Chef at Royal Orchid, Santosh who is a Chef at Hilton International took charge of the cooking and rolled out a superb menu most creatively executed. Asha who is the HR Manager of a FMCG company and Diwakar who is in the F&B department at Hilton International was in charge of PR, communication and entertainment. And Shiva who is a software engineer in a multinational IT giant took charge of the management. It won’t be just my maternal pride speaking when I say that it was the best Sunday I have had over a long time. It was sheer wonder laced with pride to see the strapping young men with biceps that have seen many a gyms or the well turned out ladies with budding signs of grace and elegance. I suppose all teachers feel awed when they see their students all grown up. For me it was much more. I was relieved that they were all in touch with each other and continued to be each other’s support system. I was moved by their confidence combined with humility. No one entering that farm house ,where this party was hosted , would ever guess where these young men and women originally came from. Selvakumar, a qualified nurse in Manipal Hospital shared that he planned to give his mother, who continues to be a cobbler, a thorough health check up as soon as his probationary period is over. He also said that he does not want too many material things in life as he has found joy in service. Shobhana is looking after administration in a multinational IT company and has been selected to attend the company’s annual conference in US in November 2015. Karthik who has always been our ‘enfant terrible’ married his girlfriend of six years and convinced her to be a teacher. He said that he realised how important a role teacher plays in a child’s life. I suppose he remembers how we found him on the streets 15 years ago. I could see transformation all around me. Was I surprised? Not at all. Delighted but not surprised because that is what we had envisioned when we began. My grin from ear to ear dissolved to tears when Diwakar announced the real reason for the get-together. These students had been talking to each other for some time and had decided that they now needed to do something collectively for Parikrma. So they took a pledge they would begin by sponsoring a few children and give me some relief. My children have truly grown up to be the citizens that we wanted them to be. The credit for this transformation goes to the teachers and the Akkas and Annas of Parikrma. And our gratefulness to all Parikrma friends and supporters who believed in us. Oh I must not forget, Narayana is planning to participate in the Masterchef competition. You must vote for him!!

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