What zing! What vibrancy! The air was thick with enthusiasm as Toybank volunteers filed in much before designated time for the quarterly volunteer meet at Moneylife Foundation, Dadar. Everyone was curious about the Nehru topis which adorned the head of Toybank team.
Every team had a star performer with Siddharth being the most mischievous kid on the block and Preeti stealing the show as the distracted one. It was a complete laugh riot full of innovation and creativity and yes, simple yet effective solutions to the problems faced during play sessions.
We started with a round of introductions where everybody talked briefly about themselves and their experience with Toybank. At 11 sharp, we stared the meeting with Shweta Chari, the Co-founder of Toybank extending warm welcome to everybody present. With the aid of a PowerPoint Presentation, she then went on to talk about Toybank, its phenomenal growth, its team, the impact it has had on children over 9 years and the future plans.
Next up was the Icebreakers! Everyone was divided into 3 teams to play Name Grid where they were asked to make as many words as possible with the help of the alphabets in their names. Then we moved onto Role Play where each team was given a difficult situation to tackle and through role play, they had to come up with solutions. It was fun watching the teams huddle and discuss intensely while munching away on sandwiches and sipping tea.
Then we moved on to the DOs and DONTS of volunteering at Toybank where the volunteers listed the essential points (filling impact sheets as a DO fetched applause from Shweta :P ). In an interactive forum next, the volunteers discussed the problems faced by them at their respective centres and feasible solutions for the same. Experienced Toybankers like Nutan and Parul also shared the challenges they had to face at their respective centres and how they overcame it.
Amruta went on to introduce a new format called Bal Panchayat. The Nehru topis worn by the team was for the same concept with everyone taking various responsibilities as Noter, Timer, etc. Through appointment of the children as ministers for Health, Education, Environment and Culture, we hoped to infuse leadership skills, confidence, team spirit, analytical skills and maturity in the kids. It was agreed that the volunteers were free to try it out at their respective centres and then give Toybank a feedback in the next Volunteer meeting.
The session ended with Nutan taking a lead and involving us in fun filled innovative activities which she undertook with children. The modified version of Ringa ringa roses and Aasman mei Chanda Taare left us all praising her. Shweta ended the session by thanking everyone present. We proceeded to click pictures by the dozens for keepsake ;)
1. Deepa Kukreja
2. Preeti Ramjiyani
3. Chhaya Patel
4. Nutan Raj
5. Gaurie Pandit
6. Durga Shinde
7. Parul Mukhtyar
8. Sonia Choudhary
9. Siddharth Bose
10. Chadrika Gopalan
11. Saloni Khaitan
To view more pictures click here
- By Saloni Khetan
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