VIDIYAL NEWS
03.07.2019 To 05 .07.2019 General Body Meeting – Six months review
04.07.2019 To 30.07.2019 – Children’s Theater Group: Play Production for the Child Rights Festival
06.07.2019 – Service Programme: Cultural programme at Home for mentally Challenged and donating the fund raised on the Giving Day of Jolly camp
06.07.2019 – Vidiyal Nursery : Parents – Teacher Meet
07.07.2019 – Image – Movie Club
08.07.2019 – Vidiyal Nursery: Red day
13.07.2019 – Managing Committee Meet
13.07.2019 – “Say No to DRUGS” sensitization series 13.07.2019 – Health Care: Periodical Checkup for children atour Child Resource Centres
13.07.2019 – Mothers Meet
14.07.2019 – Fathers Meet
14.07.2019 – Announcement of VCRM Election – 2019
16.07.2019 – Reception Home: Training for children on Basics of Street Theater
20.07.2019 -Project Staff meeting
21.07.2019 – Child Rights Festival
28.07.2019 – Election 2019 – Electing new leaders and formation of new Children’s Council
22.07.2019 – Vidiyal Nursery: Experience the Joy of Giving

Dream Come True

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A Dream Come True

There was a boy. When he was just 10 year old, he had a dream. He had a dream for his friends. He had a dream to widen the horizon of his friends living in this little Indian village called Kombai. He had a dream to break the chains of slavery and caste oppression. When he became an adolescent of 17 years, he nurtured his dream and walked with little children in the Cumbum valley. He opened the doors of his house for the mission to achieve his dream. His passionate dream to educate 10 children from excluded communities and there to liberate them from the clutches of poverty, discrimination and oppression was achieved with due commitment. This unshaken dream grew bigger and bigger, made wider and wider and finally turned into a beautiful banyan tree called VIDIYAL. Vidiyal provides a safe environment, a wide range of opportunities including opportunities to think, express and participate in decision making. This enabled children from excluded communities and children from disadvantaged backgrounds to discover themselves and grew into their full potential and blossom with a range of hues. The dream of this little boy called Jim became true.
When Jim was 10 year old he was living in Kombai, a village located at the bottom of the Western Ghats. At a very early age, he was exposed to the social evils prevailed in that village. He was totally stunned by the rural poverty and the casteism clubbed with untouchability prevailed in the society. He had friends from cross sections of the society and noticed some of his friends were treated differently. He felt sad and angry when he came to know that some of his friends did not even have a single proper meal in a day. He made strong bonding with children from oppressed communities and listened to their inner voices. Following the models of his parents and grandparents, he willingly shared some of his resources with his friends.
This has become the base for his zeal to work for the children from disadvantaged backgrounds. After completing a master’s degree in commerce he came to Madurai and started his career an accountant in Madurai YMCA. But his dream was alive which forced him to look beyond the books of accounts and audit statements. He volunteered in programmes for children and assisted Mr.Harris C.Manikam the then programme secretary of Madurai YMCA. Seeing his interest to work with children, Jim was promoted as the Assistant Secretary with responsibilities of running the Boys Home. He developed a range of skills to work with children. Camping was his favorite programme.
In 1993 ‘Achievers Unlimited’ a women’s group in YMCA under the leadership of Dr.Taj was actively involved in organizing programmes for children. Jim was secretary in-charge of this group and organized the ever historic Sunshine camp for underprivileged children at Presentation Convent at Kodaikannal. This camp was historic for two reasons. The first one was that he met Master.P.Muthukumar, a 13 year old boy from Melavasal, who took Jim to the Melavasal community later and brought him the opportunity to understand urban poverty and social exclusion in the urban context. The second reason was that the team that worked at this camp became friends and joined hands in the journey of Vidiyal. Asha, Christopher Ramesh and Anita are still serving in the board and they are a great source of support in carrying Vidiyal’s mission. The success of programmes that Jim anchored had opened a new avenue to undergo formal training in social work in the YMCA training college at Bangalore. He had chosen to work with street children of Bombay and Bangalore as part of the specialization in field work. He came back to Madurai and partnered with the children living in Melavasal slum. He joined hands with Dr.Belinda Bennet, his sister and founded Vidiyal as part of Sakthi.
Earlier he met Mr. Neville Cooper, who had a vision to lift children from poverty in South India and stayed in connection. This constant interaction between Mr.Neville and Jim led to their vision becoming one. They joined hands and started working together. Neville and his team of dedicated supporters, inspired by the work raise funds through New Dawn India – a ray of hope for Vidiyal children. Jim continues his journey with children, but his dream is no more a dream of him alone. Now Vidiyal has a shared dream, a shared vision with aerial roots spreading and our children, our volunteers (Muhangal), our alumni (Olirum Muhangal), our communities, members of our board, our partners in England, the New Dawn India and the Maduraits are very much part of this shared vision.