As someone rightly said, sports activities are a combination of four “S”: Strength, Stamina, Spirit, and Skill. The Annual Sports Meet at Deepalaya School, Gusebthi is an exemplar of all the above-mentioned traits.
This year’s sports meet kicked off with great zeal and gusto on 21st November 2018. The programme began with the welcoming of the esteemed gathering of by Dr. Manoj Kumar, Principal of DSG. The Chief Guest, Mr. Subu Rahman, Commissioner (Land), Delhi Development Authority, gave a speech motivating the students to excel both in academics and sports. Mr. A J Phillip, Secretary and Chief Executive; Mrs. Jaswant Kaur, Executive Director; and Mr. Kuriyan Behanan, Manager Administration, Deepalaya were also present on the occasion.
The event commenced in a grand way through an impressive march past and lighting of the torch ceremony. An oath was administered by the head girl of the school, urging all the students to adhere to the “sportsperson spirit”. A brilliant cultural display set the tone for the rest of the event. Hereafter, Mr. Philip freed the balloons into the air to officially flag off the competition.
The day was also special in another way. Thanks to our corporate patron Colveta India, we were able to distribute winter uniforms (including blazers, sweaters, and a pair of shoes) to all the girl students studying in the school. Mr. Subu Rahman handed over the gifts to the girls, who were overwhelmed and extremely happy to receive them.
Once the sports events began, the air was filled with loud cheers to encourage our young athletes. Students of Nursery to 9th standard competed in events such as one leg race, relay, sack race, skipping race, obstacle race, kho-kho, kabaddi, long jump, high-jump, shot-put, football, etc. The sports meet was being continued for three days (till 23rd November). The entire event was a natural expression of the athleticism and high levels of energy of the students.
Annual day is certainly one of the eagerly awaited events of the year in any school, as it provides a rare opportunity to leave a mark for the students and staff, and celebrate glory in a fun and entertaining way. This year, Deepalaya School, Kalkaji Extension celebrated its Annual Day on 17th November 2018 at the school auditorium with great zeal.
The special highlight of this year’s programme was a biological ensemble on the “noble values of Mother Teresa”. On the day, the stage was decorated beautifully and aptly showcasing the memorable quotes on “compassion” and “love” for humanity as preached by Mother Teresa. Notably, one of the school houses at DSKE is also named after her. The air was excitement-filled as the parents assembled in the auditorium and took seats to witness the special acts by their wards. On the other hand, the backstage was abuzz with last-minute preparations and rehearsals.
The function commenced with the traditional lighting of the lamp and a prayer song. Mr. A J Philip, Secretary and Chief Executive, Deepalaya and Manager of the School welcomed the dignitaries and informed everyone about the upcoming NCC unit in the school. Mr. CP Davis, Principal, Deepalaya School, Kalkaji Extension presented the annual report of the school for the year 2017-18.
Mr. Gourab Banerjee, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court (who is also an all-weather patron of Deepalaya), was present as the chief guest on the occasion. He lauded the noteworthy efforts of the students of the school and spoke high about the credibility and inspirational community service of Deepalaya. Mr. Subu Rahman, Commissioner (Land), Delhi Development Authority, who graced the occasion as the guest of honour, advised the students to embrace the two great virtues of “love” and “compassion, in an attempt to become dignified and reputed citizens of the country. A few board members, well-wishers and supporters of Deepalaya were also present on the occasion.
A wonderful dance-cum-musical drama, portraying the different life phases of the revered St. Teresa of Kolkata was presented by students from various classes. The 40-minute-long skit was filled with songs, group dance, voice-overs and brilliant stage acting by the students of the school. In a spectacular act, the students effectively portrayed an inspiring message for the society–‘each one, serve one”.
Towards the end, a concert by the students of Deepalaya choir enthralled the audience. The day ended with a vote of thanks by the head girl of the school, followed by the national anthem.
Here are some glimpses of this extraordinary function.
Even today, women and girls in our country face many social challenges—be it in moving out of the house or seeking equal treatment as their male siblings. At Deepalaya, emphasis on gender equity has been a priority area for us ever since our inception. A team from Manzil Mystics (a a Delhi-based NGO that works on education, music and development) conducted a workshop at Deepalaya Learning Centre Gole Kuan on 20th November on the theme “gender equality”; it was attended by 25 young boys from Gole Kuan VTC and the Learning Centre.
After a brief self-introduction session, the students were divided into four teams and asked to write on small chart papers what comes in their minds when they think about male gender. The participants noted and penned down different traits such as strong, confident, earning member, providing security, etc. The same exercise was now repeated with their perception of the female gender. The idea of the entire exercise was to make the students understand that some perceptions about the females have nothing to do with their biological nature but have been rather imposed upon them by the society. The facilitator also asked all the boys to consider giving equal opportunities for the growth and development of girls and women around them.
Ms. Rashmi, Mr. Aman and Mr. Manik from Manzil Mysitcs made the workshop interesting by singing songs and conducting games in between the sessions. It was felt that conducting one more session will be useful so that the participant boys can have a deeper understanding on gender equality issue.
Puppet shows are a great way to connect with children and teach them to respond appropriately in certain social circumstances. Deepalaya has recently collaborated with “It’s Ok to Talk” (a mental health public engagement initiative by Sangath that runs in partnership with Harvard Medical School) to conduct a series of puppet shows on “mental health awareness” at its various projects on 20th November, 2018 and 22nd November, 2018 at Sanjay Colony and Gole Kuan respectively.
The team from Sangath presented a story of three friends and their encounters with the teacher and parents. One of these children needed help as he was going through a stressed patch of time. It was displayed how his teacher and parents helped him to meet a counselor, talk about his problem and hence move towards resolving the issues.
This was followed by an interactive sessions for students studying in the remedial classes with one of the counsellors Ms. Pallavi. The counselor spoke about the kind of mental stress the students or youngsters usually go through. She urged them to open up in front of parents/teachers and share their problems.
The puppet shows reiterated the message — “the lesser the stress, the longer and happier is the journey of life”. Towards the end, a booklet “Asha aur Ravi ki Man ki Baat” was given to all the participants.
Deepalaya was recently conferred the prestigious Sat Paul Mittal Appreciation Award 2018 in the “Institution” Category for the organization’s “outstanding service to humanity”. The award is instituted by Nehru Sidhant Kender Trust, Ludhiana in the fond memory of its Founder-President, the Late Shri Sat Paul Mittal (visionary parliamentarian, politician and development enthusiast).
Gen. Bipin Rawat, Chief of Army Staff of Indian Army presented the award to Mrs. Jaswant Kaur, Executive Director, Deepalaya (alongside a citation, trophy and a cash prize of Rs. 1 lakh) at a grand function held at Sat Paul Mittal Memorial School, Ludhiana on 11th November 2018.