Our probably final enjoyable early start for our time in India. We were all so excited to go to school this morning, despite the emotional day that we knew lay ahead for us.We have all fallen head over heels in love with SNEHA.
Our emotions were all certainly high on our last teaching day as we all came to the sudden realisation that we would have to say goodbye. To the school itself which was the most welcoming and heartwarming place to ever come into contact with, but also to our students. There wasn’t a person on the team who hasn’t connected with some of the children and teenagers at the school in a deep way and saying goodbye to them could only be described as surreal.
It was a rainy start which got in the way of our assembly plans. However, the legend that is Nadesh still made it work of course. We sang if you’re happy and you know it (classic), but our highlight was hearing the SNEHA song sung by all the pupils on the balconies. “We at SNEHA are the showers of his blessing.”
It was a busy morning for all of us having 3 lessons straight after each other, and probably are most energetic lessons yet but we were absolutely buzzing!
I (Katie) had a great first lesson teaching about how to survive an earthquake, with the children hiding under tables and banging their tables for the noise of an earthquake (HECTIC noises all round) and pulled out different items they might need in an earthquake from a backpack. It’s awesome how these kids can make a lesson that seems so boring, so enjoyable to teach. They are all so enthusiastic and give the biggest smiles every single day.
Our other lesson with class 5Aand B was a quiz, games and our last goodbyes. It’s hard not to have favourites, but it was a great moment for me when one of the smartest little 10 year olds I’ve ever met Archit, got all the questions right and was overjoyed when we gave him a bouncyball as his prize. This little boy tells me every day “mam you’re s intelligent” (i will hold onto this forever as I haven’t heard those words in a long while…) We played lots of other games like heads down thumbs up, hello I’m mr blobby and sang the famous Saphara rendition of the banana song. GO BANANAS GO GO BANANAS!
Not going to lie, I definitely got teary eyed leaving my classes… It’s hard not to. They were the best students we could ask for, and I got to know most of the 84 of them so well! Miss them already…
There was a strange mix or emotions as we saw them perform at the leaving celebration, with some of our students performing a traditional Indian dance which left us incredibly proud and appreciative. It was a striking reminder of how no matter how much we connected with them these two weeks there is always more we can do, more of a connection to make, and more teams to follow who will get to know them even better. With hopefully a few returning members of our own team.
Our celebration day was unforgettable. The teachers and students had organise different cultural dances from Japan to Nepal to our student team getting up and absolutely killin’ it to a new song ntaught to us by Nadesh. (Of course) SNOW SPRAY was in full force!!!! It was the most ridiculously theatrical piece I’ve ever seen never mind been been a part of. Again, we all found it very hard not to get teary eyed especially when Nadesh and 8 mam said a very touching speech about how grateful they were for our teaching and how SNEHA are full of joy whenever we are there. But really it’s all of us, who have the all been truly inspired by every single person we have met at SNEHA. It’s really a beautifully indescribable place filled with the loveliest imaginable people.
The day ended with girls in the community giving us gorgeous hennas and even gave the boys their name in henna! We also received lots of beautiful hand crafted cards from the pupils in our class and conversation class, this was really unexpected!
And after our final goodbyes I can’t imagine anyone doesn’t feel a profound need to return. For some of us the final goodbye was too much to handle with James shedding a tear and Fionn openly weeping when presented with a card from his oldest classes who will also be leaving the school in the next six months. Maybe even worse was our parting from Nadesh who has become such a figure in the last two weeks it still feels like we’ll see him every morning.
A few of us managed to keep some composure but could not help leaving deeply affected by the entire experience and holding a new perspective.
We have had the best day ever. An overwhelming crazy roller coaster. SNEHA it’s never a goodbye it’s a see you later!
Peace and Love, Katie G and Fiontann
Posted in Student Team 2016
on Thursday 14 July 2016