One of our ministry’s community programs aims to equip the people of each area they work with skills and knowledge regarding education, health awareness, self-care, skills training, and environmental sanitation. These are all essential for their own transformation, as well as for the transformation of others in their groups and in the wider community.
We worked to identify individuals with the most potential in each community and gave them the roles of Change Agents – ones who will seek personal transformation and help with the transformation of others. Our youth change agents in one of these communities are currently conducting after school programs, where they teach the children in all of the areas listed above.
Two women and five youths from these Change Agent groups recently went on a retreat, where they spent some quality time with each other and came back feeling rejuvenated.
Nilesh* is one of the students in our after school program. Initially he was very shy, and every day he would put his head down on his table and cry. When he was younger, he migrated to Mumbai with his parents from a small village. He had never attended school, and it was very difficult for him to adjust to his new life in Mumbai. He had no friends, so he used to stay at home all day doing nothing.
He was admitted into fourth grade after moving, just because of his age. However, he was unable to keep up with his studies. When he came to us, we started giving him basic education at a level that he could handle, as well as counselling that he needed to adapt to his new home. Because of this, he started showing interest in studies – even going as far as to stay after class for extra study time. He is also making new friends, and becoming more and more confident when speaking with others. Nilesh* says, “I am glad that I have this opportunity now to attend school and meet new friends. I love coming to the after school program every day.”
*Name has been changed for security reasons