RS Project at DC

Community Service – 2015
Report on Eye camp

An eye camp was organized  at Maheshwar, on Sunday. March 22, 2015, from 9.00 am to 3.00 pm. Maheshwar is a town in Khargone district of Madhya Pradesh state, in central India. It is located 13 km East of National Highway 3 (Agra-Mumbai highway) and 91 km from Indore, the commercial capital of the state. The town lies on the north bank of the Narmada River.

Handloom weaving in Maheshwar has an ancient history dating back to almost 1500 years. The current tradition owes its resurgence to Maharani Ahilybai Holkar , who ruled the state of Indore from 1765 to 1795, and it was under her patronage that the weavers prospered.

Workers use handlooms and the process includes use of different yarns or threads interlaced at right angles to make the cloth. Typically ,the entire family is involved and the older individuals mostly perform skill-based activities. The weaving of cloth demands good eye sight as  the process involves spinning yarn or threads and the  use of fine tools for making patterns on the cloth. Visual impairment limits worker productivity and may affect the economic status of the family. There aren't any eye care facilities for people living in Maheshwar and  nearby remote areas, the eye camps are the only way to reach these people who otherwise would live with eye problems. In view of such issues, the students of The Daly College have taken up the he responsibility to organize  eye camp for weavers.

The camp was a joint venture of The Daly College and Choithram Netralaya. The team consisted of 12 Dalians, 5 Exchange students from USA, 4 teachers,  2 optometrists, 1 doctor and the support staff who all cooperated to make the eye camp a great success. When the team had been constituted, a blueprint of the structure of the camp was outlined which included basic understanding of concepts involved in eye care, the campaigning strategy, assignment of duties to the volunteers, arrangement of various amenities at the camp site and various other things.

The team visited the camp site on 21st March, 2015. Team worked out a plan which consisted of distributing pamphlets, going into the localities of weavers and talking to people. During this phase of the camp, all the members had enriching experiences ranging from meeting a variety of people to walking in the evening. 

After the work was done, we went to the hotel for a quick change and snack and then headed to the Narmada River for boating. On the shore, we bought diya, small oil lamps, and offered to the river as a part of ritual. After dinner and good sleep, we woke up early morning at 5.00 AM to set out for the boat ride and reached Ghat for boating. The beautiful and colorful sight of the rising sun is very difficult to be described in words. It was stunning and so serene.

Finally the day to start the camp arrived, the day we had been waiting for. Ms. Sally Holkar, Director, Women Weave, Maheshwar was Chief Guest of the function and inaugurated the function. She appreciated eye health related activities being carried out by students of DC and its impact on the surrounding population. Eye camp was started at 9:00am and ended on 4:00 pm.

Our first patient to be registered was an old lady of 90 years. From the registration counter to the spectacles distribution counter, from the beginning to the end, each and every volunteer worked diligently. The team of Choithram Netralaya, Indore provided free consultations and Eye-sight checkup with the help of latest equipments. Mr. Bais, Dr. Jain and the team of optometrists worked efficiently and tirelessly.

The camp was a success and also the centre of media attention too. It was of its own kind in Maheshwar where school students were the active volunteers. There were 611 registrations, 404 patients were provided with spectacles patients could see better due to their corrected refractive vision and 32 patients identified for cataract operation and refereed to Choithram Netralaya for free surgery. All patients went home happily

It filled our hearts with joy and a sense of accomplishment. The enriching experience which is beyond the classroom made us realize that we need to have more such hands on experiences which takes our learning beyond text books. It was a small effort to make change in the lives of people including us.

March 26, 2015 DC Eye Camp Committee, The Daly College, Indore

The Girls Washroom Project

“Service is a privilege to be sought, not a burden to be avoided”
- Albert Schweitzer

The quote above is an inspiration to give our best to the society by the way of serviceIt is through serving that we learn to value what we have, and what others are deprived of. Fulfilling the needs of the under privilegedgives satisfaction and peace of mind & makes us better human beings. We take things for granted till we are deprived of our comforts. Service makes us better human beings.

The main objective of serving society is to sensitize students to community service and gain first hand information of problems faced by the less privileged. Keeping in mind the basic sanitary requirements in schools, the students prepared survey forms and conducted surveys of the schools to find the less advantaged schools to identify which need the washrooms on priority basis. To find suitable schools for the project an advert was put up in the local newspapers. The survey was conducted in the listed schools by a group of 10 students and 3 teachers on weekends.

The result was astonishing as the dropout rates for girls on attaining puberty was most high in government schools, and the reason was no or inadequate basic sanitary facilities of clean washrooms in schools. Thus the decision of 'Girls' Washroom Project’ was undertaken by The Daly College. This project endeavours to construct two clean washrooms with septic tank in surveyed schools after the subsequent permissions from the government and local authorities. Total 10 schools were surveyed for the project.

The project took a deliberate shape while being pursued in successful collaboration with The Pathways World School, Gurgaon, the College Architect, Rotary club and the local Panchayat Heads. 

Twenty Lacs is the target money for the construction of the toilets. The Daly College has given Rs. 6.5 Lakhs from the funds they have raised to Friends of Round Square. Mr. Singh our Principal in his personal capacity has contributed Rs. 50,000/- for the project. The construction cost for each toilet is Rs. 1.5 lacs. By year closing we are likely to complete toilets in 8 schools with 20% cost coming as support from Friends of Round Square, India

DC funds for the project were collected by the student committee by organizing Casual Day, Card Sale, Cake Sale, Fete, Brochure and DJ Night.
A seven days Summer Service Project has been organized in which students will be involved in the construction work at the site and interaction with the local village and night stay in the village.

Team had to face the challenge of getting permission to construct washrooms. The principals were not available on account of election duties and bureaucratic formalities often hamper the work. Schools being used as polling booths are inaccessible for work.

The project has been completed in the Govt. Higher Secondary School, Village Siya, Dist. Dewas, Govt. Malav Girls H. S. School, Moti Tabela, Govt. Girls H. S. School, Sanyogitaganj, Deaf Dumb Association, Indore and Govt. Higher Secondary School, Kanadia, Indore while washrooms in five schools are in the process of completion viz. Govt. Hindi Primary School, Azad Nagar, Indore, Government Hr. Sec. School, Dakachya, Indore, Govt. Middle School,

Hukmakhedi, Rajendra Nagar, Indore, Swami Vivekanand Govt. Adarsh  H. S. School, Indore and Govt. Middle School, Bisnakheda, Indore

The Daly College strongly supports this project and endeavors in eradicating the lacunae of sanitary facilities so that girls may be encouraged to come to schools regularly and in turn may add and support to bear the responsibility to nurture an educated and informed society.

We have now been offered partnership support by the service (Square Mile) wing of De Montfort University in England. We look forward to working with students from DMU & this will mean more washrooms for more students.

- RS Student Committee

The VII Daly- Emritage Eye camp: A Report

If you knew what I know about the power of giving, you would not let a single meal pass without sharing it in some way.” – Buddha

Community service is not just using up time, but feeling, a life lesson, or even life lessons, like concepts learned only through hands-on experience. There is something so different, so unique that comes with giving back to one’s community.  It is the satisfaction of helping those who may otherwise receive less help. It is an opportunity to give back as we have been blessed. It is seeing people from all different areas, smile with that same smile of appreciation and gratitude.

The heads of the Daly, Indore and the Emritage, France came up with this idea of having eye camp where the students of both the schools work together to make difference in the lives of needy. Each year the camp excels its own expectations by reaching new heights. It is the result of combined efforts of Choithram Netralya, both the school and the new partner NGO Aagaz.

Eye camp is student oriented project. In this project we get a chance to instruct and lead. The first challenge was to decide the venue and many factors have to be taken in consideration such as our target community, space, availability of different resources etc. This year we wanted to have eye camp in Azad Nagar and due to lack of secure public area, Mr. Sheikh Alim agreed to support us. He offered his own house to become the camp site. The second task was to select the Dalian team for which a panel of three students namely Ipsita Suarna, Purva Agarwal and Mili Kapadia was set up. The students had to undergo interview taken by the panel. The final team was prepared after analyzing each one of them on the basis of their qualities and past experiences. The team consisted of Aditya Vikram Singh, Aishwarya Madan, Gaurav dayma,Avijeet Singh Chitrath Dixit, Ipsita Suvarna ,Jaivrat Singh, Jasmer Singh, Josephine ,Khanak Gupta, Mili kapadia,Purva Agarwal, Shashank Sahay, Siddhartha Rungta, Tejaswar Singh and Viraj Govandani. All the exchange students also got a chance to be a part of it. The team was ready and the next major task was campaigning. The response of the community completely depends on the way we campaign. So, we made sure that each and every part gets covered and the message is spread throughout, thus maximum could be benefited. After ten days of distributing and pasting pamphlets, talking to every possible person to spread the news, making announcements at the public squares and mosques, the campaigning came to an end. We even went to Choitram Netralya where we were trained about optometry and had a brief session on the eye healthcare.

On 15th February the Emritage team arrived. There were twenty students accompanied by five teachers. This year we had the opportunity to work along Mr. Christopher Hunter, Head of Emritage School, France who had started this project. The whole team was on work from the very next day. We set up the camp and campaigned for the last time. In the evening we had Principal’s dinner where we socialized and focused on learning everyone’s name.

On 17th February, we had inauguration ceremony which was graced by the presence of the city mayor. With the long queue standing in the scorching heat, with the duties newly assigned to all of us our hearts were beating fast. We were tensed, worried and the first hour was intense. We gradually picked up and by lunch we could see the shine of hope in our eyes. We had broken the records for the first day and were proven to be an effective team. We worked for another three days and did every possible thing to help the maximum. Our hard work paid us off at the end. We had broken all the records with the great margins. This was possible because of the support of extra optometrists, additional registration counter and true grit. This year we even came across two extreme cases. One of them was 12 year old girl, Sujatha, who was suffering from Anterior Staphyloma, a rare disease of the eye. The statistics of the Eye Camp are as follows:

  • • 9159 Patients screened
  • • 8700+ Glasses distributed
  • • 325 Cataracts detected and 275 cataract surgeries performed.
  • • 400 Antibiotics distributed

There was a cultural evening organized for the French students. We even went out for dinner and a shopping spree at the Mall. We enjoyed swimming in the evenings and played various games. As a part of cultural phase a trip to Mandu was organized which gave delegates a feel of Indian heritage and culture.  

Eye camp is transformation. We not only help others but ourselves as well. It changes our perception about things and helps us in making our weaknesses our strengths. We learn teamwork, power of words and realize the importance of small things in our lives. It is a wonderful opportunity which school has offered us.

  • Purva Agrawal

Round Square Prefect of the school