The S2BCA students of the Department of Computer Science and Applications, Amritapuri campus organized a visit to Gandhi Bhavan old age home in Pathanapuram, Kollam District of Kerala on May 1, 2015. The students, along with their Cultural Education faculty Bri. Praveena, loaded a bus with clothes, toys (for orphan children), food items and energy drinks. The students had open-heartedly worked hard for more than two weeks preparing for the visit. The students organized a fund raiser, clothes collection drive and created 1000 handmade greeting cards with personal wishes. The cards contained beautiful and inspiring quotes. They also continually practiced for performing various cultural programs at Gandhi Bhavan.
The team reached Gandhi Bhavan around 11 a.m. and authorities welcomed them with cool drinks and guided them to the main stage. The Chief Administrator of Gandhibhavan, Somaraj, lovingly welcomed the group. Later, a guide took them on a tour around the Bhavan,which was very clean and lovely.
Gandhi Bhavan also cares for around 100 orphan children. The students commented, “Occasionally, kids would gather around us, asking random doubts. Some of the people there recognized us from our costume: the blue T-Shirt that reads 'Serve an Hour '. After all, we weren't the first Amritians to ' Serve.' It has been decades since Chancellor Amma has been serving the world!” The students served the children and aged with juice and cake, as well as having lunch with them.
After lunch, there were cultural programs which were thoroughly entertaining. The program started with a song sung by Jishnu S. falling into the embracing melody of the violin strings by P. S. Narayanan. A dance performance by Anjali and team followed. Abhishek shared his experiences with Chancellor Amma. The stage was then occupied by the mime artists. Anuvind R. S. and Vignesh sparked laughter among the crowd as they performed mimicry on various film actors and politicians. Dance performances by Vignesh and team and girls’ team entertained everyone. The finale was the human pyramid formation by Team Extreme Dimension powered by GRACETEX. The whole gathering stood wonderstruck at the various formations exhibited by the team.
At the end, the students distributed the greeting cards made for the inmates of Gandhi Bhavan. “They were so happy and excited receiving the cards. They had stories to tell us, in return. Stories of how they were abandoned in airports and bus stands by their own children. Not even today, after years, can their wildest dreams convince them that they have been abandoned. The hope that one day someone would come in search of them, is keeping them going,” the students explained.
The students shared that It felt like more than a curriculum activity; it was a chance to penetrate into the unknown, masked society and see what was happening... They mentioned that they were most concerned about making people happy. This was a precious opportunity for selfless service and they wanted to give the best they could!.. “We spent time with them, trying to give them some good memories to cherish. And every smile that fell on their faces, converged with the magical ecstasy inside our hearts,” they concluded.