10 Aug Dassault Systemes – Changing Today with Bhumi
It was just like any other day in Chennai – a hot, sweaty afternoon with the mercury levels outdoors threatening to touch the sweltering thirties. It would have been just a normal lacklustre Saturday for the kids at Dr. PV Rao School but for a group of spirited and enthusiastic professionals from Dassault Systemes who decided to give up their holiday and brave the sun just to make a difference in the lives of these children.
And so the fun started! The kind Akkas and Annas came armed with box-loads of materials and well-practised Origami skills. They had pored over instructions on this fun and creative Japanese art of paper folding and were ready to share their knowledge with the children. On their part, the students learnt how to have a ‘maja’ time – the Indian art of having fun! Snip snip went the scissors, click click went the stapler – the students were unstoppable!
The pairs of scissors in their hands became just an extension of their fingers and the paper folding was quite exquisite. The final artistic products revealed a wealth of talent and imagination. The students had the creative urge in them all along; what was lacking were the means and an opportunity to exhibit them. Once given a chance to do so, out it came like a torrential river under heavy floods! We were deeply touched to know that the team from Dassault had spent time practising Origami during work hours, just to ensure that accurate instructions were delivered, and that sheets of paper transformed into beautiful rabbits, wolves, swans, and dogs for these children. One of the children who had accompanied his dad sure caught our attention with his meticulous act of making pianos and boxes with just a couple of folds.
Next came the painting session where the brushes brought the colours alive. The intensity with which the students were working coupled with their quiet modesty was really touching. One child, for example, had drawn a beautiful picture of the sun and the moon merged in harmony. When his work was showered with wondrous appreciation, all he did was smile. Another child patiently sketched one of the Bhumi volunteers and in the end presented the sketch as a gift to the volunteer himself!
Well, all good things must come to an end, and so too did this workshop, after two solid hours of learning and bonding through the expansive medium of art. Watching students hold their cherished artwork – big and small – closely to their chests was indeed moving and this by itself made the whole exercise worthwhile.
Kudos to the patient and affectionate Akkas and Annas for making such a fun workshop possible. Our heartfelt appreciation for the financial contribution towards Bhumi, and we look forward to this long-term association with Dassault Systemes. We also thank MyKartavya for providing us and our children with this wonderful opportunity to meet and interact with this exuberant group.
– Anish Shenai and Meenakshi Nandhini
More pictures at http://picasaweb.google.com/BhumiChennai/CSRActivities2010#