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An Awakening
An Awakening

© Shaaina Dayal


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In class 11, we took a trip from school in to the village Balki Dhani in Rajasthan as a part of a social service volunteer program of the NGO Pravah. We spent five days in the village, sleeping in the local school at night, and visiting the villagers and understanding their lifestyle by the morning. The most stirring part of the entire trip was the almost celebrity treatment we were given by the villagers. Initially it was very annoying but then it dawned on me that these villagers in this small village of Rajasthan could barely see the outside word. So isolated were their lives that when they saw twenty odd children come from the city to their little village, it was like a whole new show to them. It made me realize how immensely cut off some parts of India are from the rest of the world and how much time information and development took to reach them.

Balki Dhani is still one of those rural areas where NGOs like Pravah are very active in providing continuous support in terms of education and healthcare. There are other villages in rural India that are not so fortunate. I shudder to think what the lives of people in those parts might be like. City dwellers like us take all our luxuries for granted. True, we read about hunger, poverty and statistics relating these, but mostly these are just numb and numbers to us. It is said that people who have the ability to affect change, have the responsibility to change the order of things for the better. It is my hope that I will be able to contribute in my little way to the upliftment of the people I share this country with.

village poverty rural India NGO personal experience life changing

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