COIMBATORE: Don Bosco Anbu Illam will celebrate Children’s Day on November 29 at its home in Vellakinar. More than 800 children between nine and 18 years of age from various care homes, rehabilitation centres and orphanages in Coimbatore are expected to participate. Children from 11 supplementary education centres set up by Don Bosco in villages in and around the district will also take part.
The day-long event will have entertainment and educative activities for the children including cultural programmes, says T.Sheela, Co-ordinator of Childline.
An exhibition covering issues on environment, education, child labour, child rights, health and child trafficking will be part of the event. Governmental as well as Non-Governmental organisations such as Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, Kovai CLASS, Integrated Child Development Services, Centre for Social Education and Development and Osai, are expected to put up stalls.
The idea is to create awareness among the children on social injustices such as child labour and trafficking and violation of child rights. The importance of education and the need to understand environmental conservation will also be taken across to them, Ms. Sheela says.
In addition, a debate will be conducted for the children on the topic,
“Is the influence of the media on children positive or negative?”
It will be moderated and participated by the children themselves.
This will be followed by games and cultural programmes. All children will be given a chance to participate in games and other activities.
Children who had earlier participated in events and won prizes will be given a chance to exhibit their talents. They can dance, sing or act out a street play. However, cinematic music and dance is not allowed.
The staff of Don Bosco Anbu Illam will present a street play on the significance of participation.
“The estimated expenditure for the programme is close to Rs. 1,60,000. We have sent letters to our benefactors for monetary help. But, the public of Coimbatore has been extremely kind. We have a lot of sponsorships coming in,” Ms. Sheela says. The expense per child is Rs. 150.
“Since children living in orphanages and care homes have very few occasions to enjoy, we want to offer them the best of celebrations,” she adds.
The supplementary education centres set up by the Anbu Illam are an attempt to bring down the school drop out rate and prevent children from taking to the streets. These centres offer additional coaching and value-based education in addition to life-support skills.