Newsletter-cum-magazine of Oasis Movement YEAR 7  I ISSUE 9  I May 1, 2014

Oasis Dream India Camps

ಬೆಂಗಳೂರು ಯುವಕರ ಒಂದು ವಿಶೇಷ
ಓಯಸಿಸ್ ಡ್ರೀಮ್ ಇಂಡಿಯಾ ಕ್ಯಾಂಪ್

Oasis Valleys Hosts a Special Dream India Camp In Kannada for Youths of Bangalore!

Bangalore Youths reflect on Oasis Dream India Camp:

This Camp should be conducted all over India
& it will bring great improvement in our society;
This will definitely make India a developed country

Highlights of the camp seen in the above collage.

A special Oasis Dream India Camp was organized by ASHA (Adolescent Students’ Health Alternative), OASIS, Bangalore at Oasis Valleys this summer for the youths of Bangalore associated with ASHA & various other NGOs. 52 youths traveled all the way from Bangalore to Vadodara to participate in this camp which was organized during 7 – 14 April, 2014, and was conducted in Kannada as major language interspersed with English. Along with the youths, 20 other people joined the camp as teachers & volunteers. The camp was facilitated by Dr. Neha Vakharia, Founder of ASHA, Bangalore and Trustee Secretary, OASIS.

Crux of what participants reflected after the camp:

This camp has taught me more than what all walks of my life have taught

"I learnt about leadership, problem solving in life; I learnt about others’ feelings & pain; about dedication, innocence & love...

Before this camp I was really crying for my problems, but after the camp I got ideas and now I can solve my problems on my own...

I got new experience in Children’s Parliament. I came to know that becoming a leader, judging and keeping our promises is not so easy. It is really tough and I liked it and enjoyed it...

Here, there are no problems of male & female discrimination. All are equal and this I feel is great thing... "

This was the most friendly camp

"I had never attended a summer camp like this, this is a very different from any other & thoroughly enjoyed a lot & lot and learnt so many things here...

I got confidence that I will achieve something in my life; surely this camp helped me a lot to improve myself...

This was the most friendly camp. All the faculty members were awesome; we were all in some dream in this Dream India Camp...

The Ghost trekking in the midnight made me overcome my biggest fear of ghosts, which was the best experience of my life... We learnt there are no ghosts in the world, only in our mind..."

I learned so much in this camp

"I learnt how leader should take responsibility. I felt happy that I have increased valuable things in my life like punctuality, kindness, initiative, coordination, to build confidence and many more things...

I learnt to make friendship with others; I learnt to talk on the stage in front of everyone. I learnt to have healthy food...

The sessions helped to learn new things like Drama and Mime. We got truthful friends...

This is very short time to learn something; we want to spend lot of time for this...

I never thought I would enjoy this much. Now, I really don’t want to go from here. This is the best camp I have attended..."

“In the parliament we could express the truth without fear
& we loved the way we were left to solve our own problems”

Camp after Camp, children have proved that given an opportunity,
in the atmosphere of freedom, they can solve their own problems, creatively

Children's Parliament, a unique feature of Oasis Dream India Camp, is a process through which children solve their own problems, without interference from elders. Every evening, they have Parliament Session for two hours. Complaints or Suggestions received through Suggestion Box are discussed one by one in the assembly headed by Jury members; decisions are taken after listening to all parties. Jury is elected amongst the children on the very first day in a completely democratic way. Time and again children prove that they are capable of solving their own problems and their maturity amazes elders many a times.

Glimpses of the Parliament Sessions are shown in above collage.

Crux of reflections by students on Children's Parliament:

"We liked children’s parliament system very much because -

1. Children can learn what is right & wrong
2. Children can learn about all problems they may have to face in future
3. They will know what the mistakes they are doing
4. They will know their rights

Parliament session builds self confidence, courage to speak in front of all & & it teaches us how to ideally live together, what are all the problems we face when we live together. I really enjoyed the parliament session... Children’s Parliament system is one of the best types of system to make us strong; it develops courage within everyone and it helps us face problems... I like Children’s Parliament system at Oasis Camp because everywhere elder people rule, but here the whole parliament is in our hand. We can rule the whole camp & make our own decisions without any elder person’s help... The parliament clearly made us learn to fight for justice keeping aside our personal problems..."

“I really enjoyed learning & creating together”

The best learning for children come when they feel free from within

Glimpses of Daily Sessions, shown in above collage.

In Dream India Camps, everyday children have two sessions for learning a new subject, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, of 2 hrs each. Children are given choices to select from various subjects, which are very carefully selected, like Self-confidence, Drama, Mime, Music, Dance, Creative crafts, Painting, English Speaking Confidence, Leadership Development, etc. In this camp, students were offered 15 subjects to choose.

Crux of reflections by students about their various classes:

"The most favourite was my self confidence class because that is very essential for everyone’s life. I didn’t have confidence in me. Now, I have gained lot of confidence. I truly loved it. I am so so so happy... Mime was the most favourite session because I have a friend who cannot talk because he is deaf and mute. I thought Mime would help me to talk to him and Mime is a type of language which I learned during camp... English confidence was my favourite session because I knew to speak English but was not confident and also had stage fear. But both Deepa K. & Deepa S. helped me a lot of overcome my stage fear & supported me a lot..."

Star Assembly: Nurturing the Goodness in Every child

Continuously Reflecting Good Qualities &
Behaviour of Students Increases Their Self-esteem Tremendously

Above collage shows glimpses of Star Assembly.

During the camp, self-esteem of students was continuously nurtured through reflection of all good qualities and behaviour, individually and collectively. Everyday in the morning assembly, called as Star Assembly, students were given stars in reflection of all their good qualities and behaviour. Students earned their stars under 10 to 11 different categories, which got accumulated on a daily basis.

Morning Exercises, Evening Games and Daily Duties:

Physical activities to compensate mental work
to balance overall development of a child

Participants had various choices such as morning exercises, evening games and duties which balanced the mental work they did for the whole day inside the 4 walls of the institute. They did Mountain jogging, played various 'Deshi' games and they even kept their 'mini country' of 7days cleaned and organized through various duties chosen purely by themselves.

Above collage shows photo glimpses of various physical activities.

Performances & Exhibition of Creations on the last evening

Atmosphere of complete freedom brings out the best from children

Above collages shows glimpses of Performances presented by students on the last evening. They exhibited what they learnt in 7 days.

“The quick progress in whatever the students learnt
were the most wonderful moments to see”

The role of a Teacher is to create an environment of freedom and
to support and fulfil children's requirements for growth

Collage shows love reciprocated to teachers by the students.

20 teachers & facilitators took part in the camp to make it the most memorable camp for the youths. They showered their love while teaching the students. In return, students showered love while departing.

Crux of reflections from Teachers about the children, the Camp and their feelings :

What I saw and enjoyed were never thought of

What I got here is something much more than I had imagined. In 5 min. of meditation with children, I heard birds chirping and sound of flowing Narmada River. It gave me immense peace. What I saw and enjoyed were never thought of and so I am very happy.

The process of Children’s Parliament brought out thinking power, patience, sensitivity & tolerance, accepting one’s own mistakes, capacity to opine freely – all these from children & teachers.

Children, Teachers & Volunteers coming from different places and having different ideology got together and mixed nicely with each other was very unique.

~ Mrudula Sanghvi (ASHA Team-mate), Camp Co-facilitator

Students’ wisdom from life is worth knowing

It was very humbling experience. I learnt a lot from the students, their wisdom from life is worth knowing about.

~ Deepa Krishna (Sr. Manager, Mindtree), Teacher - Problem Solving, English Confidence & Deshi Games

They were passionate about what they were doing

Children showed much enthusiasm in learning, making friends, in doing duties, etc. I liked the time I spent in the class because they were so passionate about what they were doing. I really liked the Parliament concept. I was amazed at their confidence and maturity in handling it.

~ Deepa Shekar (Sr. Manager, Mindtree), Teacher - Problem Solving, English Confidence, Deshi Games & Yoga

Students’ progress in such a short duration is amazing

Spending so much time so closely with children from diverse & mostly underprivileged background game me a different perspective about life. Students’ involvement & progress they have shown in such a short duration amazed me. Teamwork and spirit displayed by faculty and volunteers were unique.

~ Ranjitha Rajagopal, Camp Co-facilitator & Manager, Teacher – Magic with Photography

The Highlight of the camp was to bring out courage from children to solve their problem & build their confidence.

~ Harshida Shah (ASHA Team-mate), Volunteer

The principles of the camp were impressive

The institution & the campus were different & good. The principles of the camp were impressive. The quick progress in whatever the students learnt were the most wonderful moments to see.

According to me, the highlights of the camp were –
• Friendship among the participants
• Participants’ progress and urge to learn
• Co-ordination by faculties & team management
• Affirmation & motivation through Star Assembly
• Simple & well maintained environment

~ Ahalya Desikan (Associate System Engineer, IBM), Co-facilitator, Camp Manager & Teacher - Painting & Zentangle Art

Parliament was very effective

It was great; I learned how to manage work for so many people and how to take work from others. Parliament was very effective. In general, parents never trust them to take any decision. Here, we saw children were taking good decision.

~ Kiran Gupta (ASHA Team-mate), Camp Food Manager

{Apart from the above, teachers & volunteers who participated in the camp were - Abinaya Desikan (Madurai), Teacher - Dance, Best from Waste & Paper Quilling; Khusboo & Fenil (Navsari), Teacher - Drama & Mime; Dharmishthaben, Volunteer; R. Devaraj (Member APSA, Bangalore), Volunteer; Usha, Volunteer. And Soniya Patel, Nimisha Rajpara, Harvee Shah as Guest Teachers. Two young Oasis Members - Anjali Parmar & Jayesh Chothani also took part in the camp as volunteers. }

Camp Moments

“This camp was the most memorable camp in my life,
It was very big opportunity in my life”

Promise to pay it forward -

On 13th April, a day before the end of the camp, all the youths were asked, whether they would like to give such benefit, which they got from Oasis Dream India Camp to other youths of Karnataka or not? How many of them are ready to take such commitment?

All of them showed great enthusiasm. They were warned that it is very difficult to keep such commitment and there can be many challenges on their way. They discussed among themselves and 47 out of 52 youths took up the challenge, whole heartedly.

They chose the social causes close to their heart and divided themselves accordingly making 5 youth groups. They decided that they will work for Children, Girls – especially against Girl Child-Marriages, Teenagers, Physically challenged children etc. They departed with planning and annual goals for year 2014-15 in high spirit.

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