Tiny hands, dream big - to take burden off a Mother’s Shoulders
Shruti is an enthusiastic girl studying in 3rd standard in a Government school called Margons Ragon School in Telangana. She lives in Mehboobnagar with her mother who is a coolie. After losing her father, Shruti’s mother had to sell away their land and since then, has been working to making ends meet. It is not an easy way for them – they sometimes sleep after only one meal or even on an empty stomach.
Shruthi reminisces the time she used to spend on the fields with her father. She would plant seeds manually while her father used the seed sowing machine. Looking at her father slog day in and day out, she knows the importance of every single grain of rice. And today, her respect for food has increased by multiple folds after her father’s demise. She and her mother moved to a rented house near a Government school that would provide free lunch to Shruti because they could hardly get a proper meal in a day.
Every time she sees someone throw away food in the bin, she remembers the struggles her father went through as a farmer. She wonders how people waste food without thinking about the battles one has to fight to grow every single grain. Incidents like this, give her the courage to educate people on the importance of food; Shruti says she wants to be an Agronomist one day.
Her friend tugged on her shirt and reminded her of a story where she told her she wants to be a teacher. Her school, Margons Ragon School, once hosted a Science Exhibition. As a part of this exhibition, a science teacher had displayed a microscope that intrigued Shruti. The teacher showed her what looked like a dead piece of algae. But the minute it was slid under a microscope, there was life in it – it was moving.
Her innocence is shown on her face when she said, “The microscope brought the algae to life. When I grow up to become a teacher, I will teach other children about such interesting topics.”
She is inspired by her Biology teacher and wants to impart knowledge to children like her who come from challenging backgrounds. This teacher who is her favourite, also made her aware of various nutrients present in the food they eat every day at school during the lunch hour. Shruti says that these meals provided by Akshaya Patra is what gives her the strength to think and be active during her school hours.
Well, this is what childhood is all about – you have big dreams that you want to fulfil. Dreams instil hope in our lives. The same applies to Shruti as well, she is aware of Akshaya Patra and its impact in her life. It gives her the strength to dream of having a healthy tomorrow and gives her hope for a better tomorrow.
The Akshaya Patra Foundation © 2021