To say you desire a world where everybody lives in harmony, unity and cooperation may seem like a utopian idea. But 19-year-old Meghana Dabbara is already laying the foundation for this utopian world in Medchal on the periphery of Hyderabad.
The dwellers of this world are 50 children from underprivileged sections who are imbibing values of empathy, understanding and positivity in addition to education, nutrition and all-around psycho-social development at home in Medchal.
Today, they are using unconventional methods to ‘Make The World Wonderful’ in numerous ways.
The inspiration behind the NGO ‘Make The World Wonderful’ dates back to when Meghana was ten years old and would listen to bedtime stories of her mother’s harmonious village, where people helped each other and co-existed in harmony.
By the age of 13, an older Meghana was taken aback at the stark contradiction that existed between her mother’s stories and the harsh realities of the world outside.
It was then that she decided to get onto the mission of creating a world where harmony was the underlying value.
It was only in 2015 that iB Hubs connected Khyathi, Saumya and Pranita, three young and passionate girls with similar visions. Together the four young girls are working towards their vision of harmony. Following the NIOS (National Institute of Open Schooling) curriculum, children are encouraged to look at the world in a new light with a number of activities and programmes.
For instance, one of the activities encourages them to answer the question, “Have you filled your bucket today?” It is a program where each child has his or her own invisible ‘bucket,’ which symbolises their mental and emotional self.
So, a full bucket means you feel more confident, secure, calm, patient, and friendly, while an empty bucket may make you sad, insecure, angry, stressed, afraid, or physically ill.
Another activity encourages them to make a list of ten blessings they are grateful for and why, while appreciating that blessing as much as they can.
Another modern-day ritual is that of holding the stone of gratitude (‘Magic Stone’) in their hand and reminding themselves about the best thing that happened that day and feel thankful for it before they sleep every night.
Be it, Pooja and Rajeshwari who were left orphaned after their father was stabbed to death and mother passed away of mental shock, or the story of Aarthi and Abhishek who were asked to discontinue studies by a drunk father after their mother died in an accident, as their older elder sister was struggling to buy a one time meal.
Today, each of them has a transformation story to tell.
The children also engage in writing and reading aloud positive affirmations about themselves every day. Five times before going to bed and another five moments after waking up, it’s like music to the ears to hear a child saying, ‘I am a happy and loving kid. I respect everyone and everything. I love to learn!’
They also have weekly sessions, where they gather and share their success stories with their friends.
While the older kid ensures the younger one eats meals on time, attends classes, and completes their duty, it helps the younger kid imbibe values from his/her older partner and become independent.
These kids who once entered with immense emotional baggage are now not only able to take care of themselves but also are able to help other kids today. Every child also has a mentor, who guides them in all aspects of life.