Tarang Picnic 1st Aug. 2010

“Picnic with Future of India “

On spending an entire day with slum kids from Powai Slum, I realized that it couldn’t have been better way to celebrate Friendship’s Day than this. A picnic with the Powai children of night schools was truly fulfilling and fairly adventurous for all of us. Through this post, I’ll share with you why it was a fulfilling and adventurous picnic.

For this picnic, we thought that there would be around 60-70 kids. According to this expected count, we did the necessary preparation like booking of two buses, purchasing 200 samosas as well 200 water bottles with 100 food packets. We had around 15 volunteers to take care of each factor to organize the picnic.

However, a day prior to the picnic was a big surprise for us as we found out that the number of children has shot up to approx. 130. We had to modify our preparation accordingly. We had to increase the number of samosas, water bottles and food packets by 50%. The concern at that time was that we couldn’t add more than 5 volunteers, which made the strength of volunteers to 20

Somehow everything was ready before time. And when the D day arrived, we were all ready to face all the challenges that were quite expected. The challenging tasks were arranging tickets and taking care of children while they enter and exit the bus or when they go to the rest room. It was very important for us to take utmost care of snacks and food when they were being served to the kids. In order to manage these challenges, we came up with the plan of allocating 10 children to one volunteer. We gave the full responsibility of those children to that volunteer, and this decision really worked for us.

So, on the day of picnic, we started our task at 8 am in the morning. Bhupendra, PK, Amit, Swati and I were at Powai center, whereas Siddhesh, Abhijeet and the entire team was at Andheri. We were preparing name tags for all kids, and were also allotting them to respective volunteer.

Children in que for name tags.

We took off from Powai at 9:05 am with 40 children, and we reached our other destination at around 9:20 am. On reaching Andheri, we found out that other 80 children were waiting to get boarded. As we knew that it is going to be a difficult work, all the volunteers were prepared to take the challenge. We call for a small meeting to create that we’ll fulfill the intention of Picnic
without compromising on any aspect.

Our meeting.

Our last minute meeting.

The journey started at 9:40 from Andheri. The first thing that we did in the bus was distributing Samosa and Fruiti to all the kids. We went via sea link so that the children can see The Sea Link. Later, we moved ahead for Gateway of India. We reached the first destination at 10:45 am. During the bus travel, it was raining. So, we were hoping for rain to stop when we reach Gateway. And luck was in our favor. It wasn’t pouring when we reached Gateway. When we got down, around 100 children requested that they want to use the rest room. CAN YOU IMAGINE!!! 100 children want to use restroom. And, our volunteer again did a good job of taking care of each child’s concern.

Once they were freshened up, we spend around 30 minutes at Gateway.

A Group Photo at Gateway.

A Group Photo at Gateway.

At around 11:30am, we left for Aquarium, where we spent around 30 minutes. By then, Siddhesh and Abhijeet arranged for Nehru Planetarium tickets. Soon, we headed to Nehru Planetarium. We reached there at round 1:15 pm. Children were amazed by their experience in Nehru Planetarium.

At Nehru Planetarium

At Nehru Planetarium

Then, we planned to distribute food to the kids once the show gets completed by 2:30 pm. As decided, we began serving the packet food to children. But, we discovered that the food was stinking (may be because of rain or it could be because they were packed in a foil since morning. We had no clue why that happened). We knew children were hungry and we wanted a solution
to make sure that all of them are served without any delay. So, one of the thoughts that came to me was why not go to McDonalds! We immediately went to McDonalds at Cross Road and got a burger and an ice-cream for every one in 30 minutes flat. I must say; for the first time, I realized how effective these guys are in serving large volumes (McDonalds has not paid me to advertise). Bottom line is that by 3:45 pm, each and every child was served.

My self and Volunteers are at McDonalds

My self and Volunteers are at McDonalds

I and everyone were happy to see all the kids enjoying their meal. Children were very happy and full of joy. Some of them also said it was the best day for them.

A child with his ice cream

A child with his ice cream

Mission Accomplished !!!


Rishi Modi

To see the entire photo album of our Picnic please click below –