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Healthy living with Christie and Ashley

By 6 years ago
Categories Kerala

Leaving the comfort of our air-conditioned homes, our washer and dryer and our loved ones, we travell\ed halfwat across the world to experience the simpliest joys India has to offer. The Cuisine is exquisite here, never have we seen so many variations of curry in different dishes or would have imagined eating Italian pasta, Thai, pizzas or fried chicken right down the street from our house. We discovered the beauty of the Pardesi Synagogue, the functionality of the Chinese fishing nets and the creativity of the Tibetan shop right in the center of Fort Kochi. We learn’t the art of price bargaining at the many boutiques and shops around. All of this is only a small part of our adventures two weeks in.

The most life-changing part hands down has to be the school and the people we share this experience with. It is amazing to see how little the children have yet how content they are just to play and learn. We beam each time our students grasp a new concept or simply sing happy birthday to a fellow student or volunteer. Lunch time is quite a sight to see. All the children scramble down the staircase to wash their hands before and after each meal in order to enjoy their rice and curry with their hands. With our science and medical background, we both grimace at the thought of such a good sanitary practise gone wrong. The children will only wash their hands for mealtime, washing merely with water. Soap and hand sanitizers are not a common practise for them.

Wanting to do more for the children, we decided to do an information session in hand washing, dental hygiene and other sanitation practise for the students after school. We want to demonstrate the importance of using soap effectively to wash hands through a fun activity of dipping two volunteer hands in glitter (representing bacteria and germs)and washing with and without soap to compare. For the dental presentation we will teach the students to brush their teeth and to brush at least twice a day.

Even though we know that there are limitations to the extent of our presentation due to the financial limitations of many of the students, we hope the health and hygiene session will encourage the students to use these practises. The children are so precise and are like sponges. We know they might not remember us because they are so young and so many volunteers come and go through the project but we hope that some of what we teach them stays with them and fosters the amazing potential that they have.

Christie and Ashley