Smile Foundation organized the event “Be the Change” with Atanu Das – the Youth Olympic participant from India. Also present in the occasion was Ms. Purnima Mahato, the Indian Archery team coach.
“Be the Change” is an initiative by Smile Foundation to involve civil society in the process of bringing about change. It aims to promote the culture of “Giving and Sharing” among the privileged mass, inspiring them to “ACT” and make a difference in the lives of the underprivileged. The event was organized at YMCA, Smile Foundation’s partners for its Smile Twin e-Learning Programme.
The archer had come to the STeP center, especially to interact with the students and encourage them to strive hard, pursue their dreams and think ambitiously. Atanu Das and his coach Purnima Mahato, counseled the students on sports as a career option. The students asked them various questions about their struggle, archery, on where did they get the inspiration to get into this sport and the viability of a sports career in India. The guests were amazed by how much the students knew about the current sports scenario in India and also noticed a great level of interest in all the kids towards sports.
Speaking on the occasion Atanu Das said “The kind of work and effort that Smile Foundation is putting in to bring stability in the lives of these children is commendable. I really appreciate their work and hope to add on to my contribution with Smile in any way possible in the future.”
Adding to this Purnima Mahato said “This is a great experience for all of us to be amongst these kids. We are the privileged ones. This hits us hard on the face, the moment we look around. Yet very rarely do we get an opportunity to do anything for them. Meeting these youngsters was an opportunity for us to get a glimpse of how they are striving to fight life’s crisis. Interacting with them has given us a feeling of immense joy and pride. We would love to do more.”
The event was concluded by releasing hundreds of colorful balloons and the banner disseminating the message of “Be the Change”. It was great fun seeing the crowd cheering as the balloons went up in the sky.