2 minute read
MENTORING YOUNG MINDS
I met Latha a few years ago, when she chose to wear one of our scarves to an Award ceremony, where she was nominated for Femina Award for ‘Social Impact’ and ‘Child sensitivity’. I had the wonderful opportunity to interact with her and learn about ‘TALC’, The Alternative Learning Community, a heartwarming venture that she started in 2015 to mentor young minds.
She started TALC, with a community of committed and passionate thinkers, experts, parents and teachers who firmly believed in each child’s uniqueness and ability to grow into a brilliant individual. She felt a more humanistic approach was needed, where children needed mentors and anchors for their emotional and moral needs.
Latha felt that while the Indian education system focused on academics and intellect, there was a serious dearth of an all-round emotional and spiritual development of the child. When her first born suffered at the hands of the system, she realized it was time to take things in her own hands. She started to train in transaction analysis, specializing in education & psychotherapy while being a hands-on mother to two young boys Ajith and Aditya. She believed a more humanistic approach was needed, where children needed mentors and anchors for their emotional and moral needs too! Hence TALC was born.
TALC is about a healthy environment for evolving minds, as the truth is, children are a product of their environment. At TALC each child is understood and encouraged to learn at their own pace, fostering their ability to freely express, become independent and confident individuals.
Choice at TALC comes in the form of children choosing their subjects, homework, time of assessment and the skills they want to try out. Children are respected as individuals with a life and talent beyond their grades and are provided with opportunities to explore both conventional and non-conventional careers for themselves.
Latha told me there were many talented kids who wanted to learn the art of hand block printing. I thought it was a great chance to expose them to sustainability and a riot of colours. It was a pleasure to donate one of our block tables from the workshop with some wooden blocks to the organization, to enable kids to explore the medium of self-expression through art. It was a joy to see how children made it their own by painting the trolleys in bright hues of lemon. Every little creation was a treat to my eyes!
The pleasant surprise was to watch Gautam, a 20-year-old young adult, stickler for perfection and a fabulous cook who is in the spectrum of Autism, handprint some of our bags using our signature patterns. We were blown away by his perseverance to do the job with pride and efficacy. So the next time you receive one of our handmade shawls wrapped in a cloth bag that bears a ‘Tree of life’ imprint, remember, it fortifies his indomitable spirit “I AM WHO I AM”!
TALC is looking to growing their community and if you would like to add to the beauty of learning in anyway, please write to us on email@example.com