Toybank turns 15 !!
On 14th September, Toybank celebrated, with great gusto, another milestone in its magnificent journey of spreading happiness in the lives of children. Since 2004 & even today, Toybank continues to harness the Power of Play to develop children’s socio-emotional, cognitive and mental well-being.
It gives us great delight as we trace this incredible journey right from taking baby steps of distributing toys and games to hundreds of children to focusing our aim of imparting play-filled learning to over 50,000* children across our Play Centers. Now at our 15th Year, we see the need for play with evermore clarity & are excited to spread our work across the state of Maharashtra in the years to come.
This year we were delighted to celebrate this joyous occasion with the students of Tardeo Municipal School (TMS). Over the past few years, several schools like TMS, which cater to vernacular mediums of education have been facing an adverse issue of high dropouts and absenteeism. One of the reasons being an increasing preference towards English-medium institutions. Along with our support for multilingualism, one of our aims is to complement the education system by introducing children to a system of learning coupled with play & fun. Thus, we encourage children to come back to school. We wanted to do this for TMS as well and therefore decided to celebrate our birthday with close to 300 children.
Children from age 4 to 15 years were part of this celebration. Laughter, giggles, loud cheers echoed throughout the school. It was a wonderful experience to watch how the children unraveled themselves through the activities.
The pre-primary children revealed their hidden creativity by colouring birds & telling stories through them.
The primary section played games like Idli Vada Dosa, Orange Lemon Banana and Pass the hulahoop. These games are excellent ways for children to showcase their listening skills, ability to coordinate with clarity & positively mingle with their fellow classmates.
The secondary students moved and grooved to Zumba steps curated by four power packed dance instructors. After dancing, these children then channelized their visual memory and drawing skills to a game of Pictionary.
Toybank has been working with TMS for a long time now, through its Play Centers. This birthday celebration was a moment of pride for us because we noticed how a majority of the students have come out of their comfort zones and insecurities. Every child, every teacher, every volunteer had a great time interacting with each other in this fun and frolic. On our birthday we also distribute toys & games wrapped lovingly for the children to take back home.
Apart from Team Toybank, this event was also driven hand in hand with our volunteers. We believe in the spirit of volunteerism as it bridges the gap between the privileged and lesser-privileged. There is an incredible opportunity for each of us, through these interactions, not only learn to respect people from other economic and social backgrounds but also learn to value what we have in our own lives. Special bonds are created through these acts of fellowship. Barriers like social class, age, gender - blur, facilitating an environment inclusiveness and community.
Toybank has always believed in creating a better world free of disparities for children who are always looked upon as potential leaders of tomorrow and our birthday is a time to celebrate the momentous developments we make year on year as a team. We look forward to a sweet sixteen next year, with ever more love and warmth building in all our lives through Play.
(*Data recorded as of August 31st)