After 11 months of settling me down in New Delhi, India I am so happy to introduce ECO-V’s “Nature Kids” programme to kids and parents in India too. When we started Nature kids in Sri Lanka in 2013, it was with only 4 kids including my own two boys. There after on every Thursdays we went to Good Market (https://www.facebook.com/goodmarket.global/) to conduct this programme and we were waiting for kids to come to us. Luckily, We did not have to wait too long. It grew up so fast as one of the highlights of Good Market. With the support of Kate Stork Memorial Fund, UK in 2013, we were able to make it a regular weekly programme to train more youth leaders who run the programme. Also we introduced Nature Friendly Teens, Youth and even Nature Friendly Parents! Also introduced Nature Friendly Birth Day parties by Nature kids. “Nature train” formed by chain of kids during Nature walks around Diyatha Uyana Wetland in Colombo was more attractive with bubbly happy kids. It grew up with a huge attendance of kids and we had to limit it to 20 kids per session as it was challenging to manage all enthusiastic kids aged between 3 to 14 years who were running towards us on every Thursdays after school.
|Nature Train! with kids favorite animal image|
|sitting and chatting before nature walk|
|During Nature walk|
|understanding elements of Mother Nature!|
|feeling the other living beings- handle with care!|
|listening to kid's on what they discover..|
|during Nature walk|
Nature kids is a programme I decided to start after reading the book “Last Child in the woods by Richard Louv” I was lucky enough to connect with Richard in 2012 during my Eisenhower fellowship visit to USA. So I did not want to see the last child in the woods in Sri Lanka who is suffering from “Nature Deficit disorders” as described by Richard in his book. That’s the motivation behind the progarmme.
|The book I got inspired for starting Nature Kids|
I was always inspired by kids who showed the great love towards more sentimental features of Mother Nature. We discussed about patterns of falling leaves, sound of falling leaves and drew the shaped of clouds, mountains and even we heard the sound of bees and butterfly wing flapping. We smell the fragrances of flowers while leaving them for butterflies and bees and ants to enjoy. Kids learnt how to enjoy Mother nature through five sensory organs. They learn the patterns of Mother Nature by watching at them and understanding. They started to meditate with the sounds of birds and wind, touched the elements of Nature with care and love. Never dropped litter or spit on her, never wanted to heart her. Stopped eating processed food and started growing plants and vegetables at home with their parents. Celebrated their birthdays with zero waste. They wrote about their experience at different forums and won awards too. Ultimately they connected with Mother Nature through mind and body, becoming a true Nature kid!
So now, I am ready to repeat same actions or more with kids in Delhi. The first programme we ran was a success. I have another reason to start this programme. With the invitation and support from an Indian team I managed to share my experience in forming a new NGO. It’s called Edible Routes Foundation (https://us13.campaign-archive.com/?u=5bb2dbe1f48c19b3abe8ae127&id=2400675436) Since I am well settled in New Delhi, India this is a great opportunity to continue my work which I missed since I left Sri Lanka. “Nature kids” is my first gift to the kids of Mother India! I really look forward to working with them towards a healthy and happy Mother Nature and vice versa.
|Kids are all beautiful in the word specially when they become Nature Kids!|
|wow....are they read or orange??|
|understanding birds through feather|
|close look at a leaf not seen before!|
|feeling the fragrance of flowers through mind and body|
|Listening to trees|
|The team at Edible Routes Foundation who helped me to run Nature Kids in Delhi|