Snehagram School and Education:-
In Snehagram, we study under the National Institute of Open Schooling. (NIOS). What this means is that we basically write our exams under the instruction of the NIOS Syllabus. NIOS provides a wide array of topics to study. We can choose 5 subjects of our interest. We do not need to take courses in all the five subjects at once. In one year we can take 2 or 3 subjects rather than 5, which makes learning the material more manageable. In Snehagram, the subjects covered include English, Data Entry, Home Science, Painting, and Psychology. Pre-NIOS groups prepare for NIOS by independently doing some light studying. Vocational training groups focus on farm training and dairy farming. Skill groups exist to train for tailoring. Every day we attend classes from 9am to 3pm.
By: Manik Prabhu
5km marathon Run:- July 10 2015
Snehagram Students participated in the Bangalore run, which was held on Nice Road. Students were practicing hard for the run. 28 of us were chosen to participate in this venture based on our practice performances. This run was supported by the Nice Road staff. Before the run, we had some warm up exercises. There were many children from many different schools other than ours that also participated in this event. The Students from the Ideal NGO with disabilities also took part in the run. A boy with visual impairment sang a song which was very meaningful to me how he affected the event in a different way other than running. It inspired me to run and reach my own goal. When I started running, it was not very good because the road was narrow and clustered. I was a bit nervous whether or not I could reach the finish line with a good time. While I was running I felt excited yet calm because beside the road there were many trees to distract me from the daunting task at hand. Eventually, I finished my run in 24 minutes. After the run I, relaxed and told myself that I need to improve my pace next time around. We all received medals for putting in a lot of hard work for this event. Overall, I enjoyed the run.
Opening of the Academic Year June
After our holidays, some of the new students joined us at Snehagram. We were all divided into different classes, such as New NIOS, Pre-NIOS, Skills Group, and Old NIOS.
New NIOS is comprised of students preparing for their 10th exam. Pre-NIOS are students are those being introduced to the 10th standard. The Skills Group includes those learning skills, such as tailoring, dairy farming, and photography. Lastly, the Old NIOS class consists of students who are preparing to take the NIOS exam for their remaining two subjects after having passed their first three subjects.
After the division of classes, volunteers from the United World College came for two weeks to mingle with us and teach us communicative English. After they left, we began our serious classes and are now following a structured time-table. In the NIOS syllabus we can choose any five subjects. For old NIOS students, classes include: Home Science, English, and Data Entry. These three subjects are taught by: Shaji Sir, Jessy, and Jithin sir. All of the students in this group have passed these subjects, but still have to take two more subjects. These classes will take place in April. Fr. Prakesh is teaching Psychology, and Social science is taught by Shaji Sir. Some students are also doing a self-study, and if they have doubts about their understanding of the material, Shaji Sir helps them. This year, 11 new students have come from Sneha Care Home; they are Aishwarya, Jyothi, Priyanka, S. Priyanka K, Sandesh, Sanjay, Satish, Vijay, Siddaramesh, Vijay Kumar and Harish. They are all from Tamil Nadu.
Snehagram Students went to Organic Farm:- On June 20th,
In Snehagram, we usually have organic farming as a co-curricular activity, but this year, we are doing organic farming as part of our vocational training. Raja is helping us to maintain a good organic farm. I am also one of the students involved in this type of training, and I love it very much. We have planted all kinds of vegetables needed to sell and earn our money. We have 6 boys training for this, and I am sure it will help us enrich our future skills.
On June 20th, eight of us from Snehagram visited an organic farm in Berikai. Before going, our perception of the farm was that it would be well covered with a good ventilation system, but the truth was that the farm was open and used pesticides on its vegetables and plants. The farm was owned by Raja. For 4 years, he trained in Auroville on how to develop an organic farm. He is originally from North India and learned many methods of maximizing the amount of usage of water for all types of plants as to reduce wastage. He also learned how to make a farm pesticide free. He taught us how to compost from our natural waste. We enjoyed our time with him, and he offered us a very nice tea made out of jaggery. We learned so many things.
International Games :- june 26th 2015
Babu and Manik were selected for the International Children’s Games this year. We were all very excited for them! Starting in February, they began to practice. They trained for 5 hard months for this event. Manik was practicing for the 100m and Babu was practicing for the 1.500m
Manik’s Experience in Netherlands Run:
My experience in the Netherlands was very nice, I enjoyed it a lot. I was very excited and honored to participate in the game. I was surprised to see so many children from all over the world participating. I was very proud of myself, because I was one of the runners that could actually participate in this competitive event. The opening ceremony took place the day before the races began. I was participating in 100 m race. I had the will power in me but I was not confident very confident that my time would be competitive. I ended up finishing in 6th place. I thought my performance was sub-par. What I have learned from the race is to overcome my sadness and to build more confidence in myself so that I may better myself in the future. On Sunday, we had the relay competition. I was very happy that we did well in the first round but our team did not qualify for final A, but instead only qualified for final B. I was not very happy because I expected that we would place in final A. In final B, we did really well and did our best in the race, which was still exciting. I was selected for this event because of my performance in the “Champion in Me” competition.
Next, we visited Geneva to meet with the head of UNAIDS. We spoke about the “Champion in Me” competitions, Snehagram, and how we are building futures for children living with HIV.
We also visited Rome with Elvis sir; we had a great time. We were excited to see Vatican City and the Coliseum. This was the first time in my life visiting other countries, and seeing places like the Vatican City and the Coliseum was a thrill for me.
I was happy that I was able to represent my country and children living with HIV. I wanted to convey a message to the rest of the world that HIV children can do anything, and they can live a normal life with support. I am proud of myself.
I was very glad when I was selected for the Children’s Games in the Netherlands, but I was unsure how rigorous the training would be. Manik and I were going to train twice every week until the competition, in Bangalore from Krishnagiri. Elvis Joseph from BSSF had chosen us to compete based on our performances in previous competitions. I was training in long distance, the 1500m race, and Manik in the 100m. Here, one of the unique challenges of this competition was traveling a long distance (120 km) just to train. Later, we overcame this challenge by moving to Bangalore temporarily. Our training was hard but done in a systematic way. Another challenge I faced was getting my passport, which took 3.5 months. On top of this, money was also tight. These were a lot of external thing to think about other than my running. Naturally, I was worried for the race, but encouraging words from my coach calmed my nerves. This was a great opportunity to show the world that an HIV infected person can do great things.