Saturday, July 4, 2009


MUMBAI, JULY 4, 2009: The afternoon of July 3 saw a large number of school dropouts, unemployed youth and housewives gather for the valedictory ceremony at Dharavi. The ceremony marked the closure of the Spoken English and Basic Computer classes that were held for a period of three months beginning April 1, 2009, by Don Bosco Development Society in collaboration with Ekvira Mitra Mandal as part of Don Bosco Tech. Those gathered had been a part of the three month long venture.In attendance for the function was the team from the Mumbai Development Office including Ms. Laxmi, the Computer facilitator; Ms. Nushrat, the spoken English facilitator and field worker staff Ms. Sanjeevani. It commenced with the welcome address by one of the students. She spoke about her experiences at the course. This was followed by a welcome song sung in English by a few students. A few more students came ahead to share their experiences. It was heart wrenching to see a simple housewife from the Dharavi slums speak in English. Though she stumbled for words in between she picked again from where she had stopped.Before the distribution of the certificates Fr. Savio Silveira encouraged the participants to take what they have learnt ahead. He mentioned that it wasn’t the end and that things had just begun for them. A hilarious skit in Marathi put up by the students followed. The skit had everyone present in splits. Participants sang an English song which was commendable and yet another participant sang ‘Itni shakti hamein dena data’- a Hindi bhajan. Ms. Surekha from the Mumbai team explained to the participants the objective of collaborating with Ekvira Mitra Mandal, after which the certificates were distributed. The students promised her to come back in a month’s time much more improved and to lead by example.The vote of thanks was delivered by Ms. Nushrat the spoken English facilitator. This three months program has benefited 160 students in all.

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