Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Year 2, Day 3, Sept. 28th, A Child's World

The third day of second edition of the Joy of Giving Week and the nation is apprehensive about the post Ayodhya verdict reaction. It is worrying to hear school children talk of trouble that will follow the verdict and voice the opinion of the significant adults in their environment, about 'these people and those people'. How we wish that children could retain their innocence, that children could learn to live together, be free of and from violence, not be exposed to abuse of any sort, above all learn to believe that each one of us is an equal human and therefore have the same basic desire to be loved unconditionally and to belong. When one hears children talk today, it is evident that very few understand this and that most of them live in fear.

Fear dominates the minds of most children. They are frightened because they have not done their homework, because they have broken something, because the bully at school harasses them, because the uncle/ aunty down the road is abusing them, because the Seth or Malik is beating them, the policeman drives them away and because all these demons visit them at night, turning their lives into a living nightmare. When children are troubled like this, then the world they live in is not safe for them.

What exactly does a safe world mean? It is a world that respects the dignity of our children. It is a world where discrimination and abuse are unknown. It is a world where children feel secure, loved and accepted; a world where children have the right to remain children and are not drawn into adult responsibilities and games at childhood often against their will; a world where every child that is born has a right to a childhood that is peaceful and secure; a right to play and leisure; a right to an education; to freedom from fear; a world where each child has a right to hope and dream and children should never have to face a world that does not promise them the above.

What does all this have to do with the Joy of Giving Week one may ask and the answer to that is everything. Our participation in the JGW should not be undertaken merely to raise resources, but should help us to change our attitudes towards others, whether less fortunate or otherwise. The empathy that we hope accompanies each act of giving is what will ultimately help transform us into better human beings. When this happens, the change will filter down to our children and through them, our society will change into a safe and humane one. Come forward to participate in the JGW and help this change to happen .

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