My name is Lara Cassar Delia and I’m writing this blog post to express my personal experience as a volunteer at Bodhi Tree School India with Right 2 Smile. I’m a graphic designer so art is part of my daily work and love. It was my initial intention to show and transmit love and fun through art to the school children. With art one can communicate a message to everyone, no matter the culture or age.
In the past days, I offered to start a mural in the hall of the main school. I decided to draw a cute boy playing with a dog due to the fact that the children are familiar with it since at school they take care of a dog called Sheru. All the children were fascinated, one could see it in their eyes, the joy and the amusement.
They were all pointing and saying, “Boy, Baby Boy”. is the easiest form of teaching one can use in my opinion and this definitely proves it. Later on, I sat down on the floor helping them colour on paper. They enjoyed scribbling and doodling, their imagination free without inhibitions or fear. It was a fantastic experience because I could transmit my skills for a greater good, doing something for a purpose.
Today we went to one of the playschools, situated in the heart of the village called Bhola Biga. I designed a birthday calendar on the wall. We had very limited time and resources, I had to think outside the box and find a solution that was feasible and flexible for everyone, even for the other volunteers themselves that might not have knowledge of art. The design was created using simple circles, 12 yellow ones indicating the months of the year and 31 red circles indicating the days of the months. The teacher was instructed to stick stickers on the wall to mark the birthdays on the green circles representing the particular days. This makes the calendar reusable for several years, for the next children to come. We can’t think the way we think back at home in Malta, we have accustom ourselves and our thought process according to the Indian culture.
This experience itself was a very empowering and beneficial for myself as it wasn’t the usual working environment I’m used to, but the end result was successful. The appreciation from the children was so encouraging and fulfilling. We could see and feel their happiness. They were singing songs in English and in Hindi for us . This gives me great joy and appreciation toward the little things that we might take for granted in our daily life.