As a program admin for Sneha Home, I implement Hope Torch programs that mentor the kids to help them discover their self-worth. The programs provide experiences that trigger the understanding of various self-worth related variables such as: understanding the value of contribution, being responsible, taking ownership and many other self-reflective measures given through their participation in the program.
The Hidden Treasures program allows kids to combine their creativity with a purpose. The kids at Sneha Home decided to plant trees in order to encounter the degrading environmental conditions in their community.
One of the first challenges in planting trees in the neighborhood was to select a site. Not too far from where they live are old railway tracks. They wanted to line the tracks with trees. When I took them to the site, they realized it was a government site and that could result in felling the trees when the government decided to use the space for some other project. The team discussed the challenge and decided to switch the venue to a church backyard, which was just 1 km away from their residence.
Switching the venue of the plantation had its own problems. They discovered that the ground was rocky and they had to dig 2-3 feet before they started planting. That still didn’t deter them. They found solutions to their problems; watering the land would soften the mud and loosens the grip. The team planted 5 trees with their own idea of digging the parched, rocky land and getting the exact depth they wanted to plant.
I watched them figure out various solutions and implement these solutions on their own. The result is now featured as a design of one of our Self-Worth Postcards showcasing their perseverance.
Honestly speaking, the kids could have given up at any point. They could have picked another project, or switched locations again; this time with good fertile soil. They could have simply not cared about the safety of plants at the first location on the train tracks. Their ability to keep solving the problems that arose reminds me of this quote: Failure is inevitable but it is the courage to continue that matters more! Don’t quit when things get difficult.
By: Anisha Bhandari