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Pack for a Purpose: Crayola and the Community

Pack for a Purpose has not only reformed the physical infrastructure for education, in the case of Ramathra, but the entire mood with which children approach schooling.

We walked through the village in Ramathra, where life had begun hours before. The mustard fields had been watered, breakfast eaten and lunch on its way, and children bicycling and playing hopscotch.

It was a Saturday and the schools were closed so that the children could study for tests on Monday. They came to school to receive the donation, however, not having done very much work in the morning. We could tell by their giggles, their mischievous smiles, and the dust on their dresses.

I talked to them about the importance of hard work, and how they must do that themselves, and that these materials would be given to them as instruments that will enhance this process. We gave a pencil and a pen to each child to begin this journey and asked them to use the paints and coloured pencils wisely, to make art to depict both their landscape and their feelings. A few girls immediately came up to me having scribbled little patterns on a piece of paper, as a thanks. They ran off, promising to study and we left the remaining boxes with the headmaster of the school, who was deeply thankful for the change in learning and motivation that we had facilitated.

Ibex’s guests say that Pack for a Purpose have already made their mark around India. The children have never laid eyes upon stationary such as what these not-just-tourists have brought with them. They will not only be of visual and aural aid in the learning process, but encourage other mediums of communication and learning.

When we visit the next time, we hope to see not only an improvement in skill, but also in using the materials responsibly. And above all, in viewing work as play!

Himali Singh Soin wrote about her experience when she visited a school in Ramathra, Rajasthan back in 2014, to donate stationery to the school children.