Place – Jamui, Bihar
Purpose of the Visit – Experience Villages of Bihar, how iSaksham an organization which, across 50 villages of Bihar, is creating a cadre of Digital Educators, works and to learn from them.
What came out as a surprise outcome of the 5-day Visit to iSaksham were 2 stories.
One which made me realize that “It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.” And the other one announcing that “In the little towns and villages people are not numerous enough but every man there is himself a class”
Now, to keep it simple iSaksham builds local youth as community tutors cum entrepreneurs and trains and provides them with capabilities and resources to empower their community, while they also earn a livelihood for themselves.
In the coming 6 years, iSaksham plans to provide quality elementary education to 50 lakh poor children, skilling 50,000 youths to be community tutors and helping 5 lakhs youth to be skilled in various vocational trades.
Sounds impossible, isn’t it?
Well, would you agree that when spiders web unite, they can tie up a lion?
That’s how I saw the magic happen. It was so inspiring. Every single person who was working to attain this task in iSaksham was inspired by action. They influenced each other’s lives in such a way that it inspired other members to dream more, learn more and do more. Everyone was invited to choose forgiveness over division and teamwork over personal ambition and It was really exciting for me to see people with differing views coming together and finally respecting each other. Where character was not a concept that was simply spoken about but actually manifested through actions.
On our own
we maybe marshmallows or spaghetti
but together we become something bigger.
Much of their music captured this spirit.
On Day 3rd I was somewhere in the middle of a village without all the modern amenities and that’s where I met Rajaram Gee. He was a man in his 20’s. Thin, short height but with good thoughts.
He used a wheelchair to move around his small house where he used to teach more than 40 kids.
His voice inside, while teaching
He whispered all day long
this is right, this is wrong
And I couldn’t decide
What was right for me
So I just listened to
his voice that spoke
And I learned a lot…
I would say he wasn’t disabled. Disability is a matter of perception and this guy was reaching so many kids in need by giving tuitions to them. The kids used to call him GURUJI. He was the kind of person who dared to face life’s challenges and overcome them.
While I was talking to him he admitted that he had no idea what his condition looked like. Moreover, he didn’t care: by abandoning the standards of the outer world, he was able to tap into his more authentic beauty.
He said he’ll be fighting his whole life, but on the other hand, he is more than capable of not letting it beat him.
It’s impossible to say exactly the way our conversation went. What he said had too many parts and sides; too many flavours and shapes which could never be fully described.
But, this man was himself a class. There was a remarkable amount of strength residing in him which moved him forward without being able to physically move.
He could have easily said that life treated him harshly; because many experiences would be withheld from him. But as much was denied, much, very much, was given.
He made me realize that Everything in life is a blessing, and those with a grateful mindset tend to see the message in the mess. Even though life may knock them down, the grateful find reasons, if even small ones, to get up.