Goa is a paradise! It’s lush green forests, mesmerizing beaches, beautiful churches and the Goan vibe itself makes you feel relaxed. If you’ve ever been to Goa before you’ll definitely agree you had the time of your life, and it’s probably the reason you’re back for more. There’s not a single day wherein you would feel bored, because there’s always something to explore in Goa. Normally, people visit this beautiful state to take a break from their hectic schedule and have some fun with their loved ones. But what about the less privileged who weren’t as lucky to get families who could love them? For them this place of paradise would mean nothing, because even when you’re in paradise you’d want to share the joy with someone other than yourself. Goa is home to many orphanages, with kids who yearn to be loved but are not so fortunate as to have a family. Have you ever heard people say doing good to others gives you utter joy? Well it’s true!
You may have various reasons for visiting Goa, maybe you’re here on a business trip or just for a fun filled holiday. But if you take some time out of your schedule and dedicate some time to the kids in one such orphanage you’ll see that there’s much more in Goa than its endless beauty. Every state has a history, a dark place and so does Goa. But you will notice Goa’s struggle to make things better for these orphan children. These very children, who have seen so much sorrow in their lives, are the first to greet you with a warm hug and a sweet hello, you’ll hear them laugh and giggle so innocently and play with so much joy, they’ve learned to make their loneliness their strength. If we make these kids feel special, they’ll know they’re not facing this world alone. It’s up to us whether we want them to feel special or not. It won’t cost you a penny so don’t hesitate in doing something good for these kids.
Every human being wants attention, someone to love and care about them; these orphan children are no different. All they want is some of your time. They have been abused, tortured, left stranded on roads, does anyone deserve that? But yet they survive with the strength to forgive and live a happy life no matter what. It is such a great feeling when you are the reason for the smile on someone’s face. Being with those kids will teach you to love, respect and appreciate life. We in turn can help the kids realize their potential and all the wonderful things they could achieve in their lives. It will be one the most exciting and enjoyable memories you’ll have of Goa.
We’ve been blessed to have a family who will always be by our side. But unfortunately for these kids nobody’s there to hold them when they fall or hug them when they cry. Take a peek into their world and you’ll realize how hard it is for them. Let us make it a point to bring happiness into their lives. But at the same time let me emphasize on the fact that we aren’t doing them a favor, it is in reality just as much helpful for us as it is for them.
There is a desperate need for the betterment of the society. And Goa is determined to achieve this goal. In fact Goa has various NGO’s, government institutions which cater to the needs of these children. So it won’t be hard in finding such organizations or orphanages. Almost every village or city has at least one orphanage.
These Ngo’s allow voluntary service, so you could allot some part of your day in these centres. It usually involves teaching them, playing, talking to them and just having a good time. But you could try something different as well. There have been quite a few volunteers in every Ngo, mostly tourists but locals as well. And the numbers have kept increasing in the course of time. This is because people have realized the importance of it. People from all over the world take some time out of their own lives and dedicate themselves to these children so they could see them grow into their full potential.
“I love my children. I will do whatever I can to protect them. I love these children just as much as I love my own. Kids are supposed to be loved and nourished. Im playing my role of a responsible adult” says Mr. Vernon Rebello, Thivim. People are imparting into their children the good sense of giving, forgiving and loving everybody just as Mr. Rebello did. His daughter sharlene Rebello says “I used to donate clothes because I didn’t see the need to hangout with them. But then one day dad literally dragged me along with him. And I thank him for that. I’ve grown very close to the kids in the home (orphanage), I think of them as my siblings. I make it a point to visit them every Saturday.” People with daily life stresses often don’t have time or prefer not giving time to anyone else because they have their own issues to deal with. But there are a few who find comfort in being amongst others and helping them out like Mr. Ivan Soares, Mapusa who says, “I volunteer once in a while. I don’t have the time to. But whenever I do those kids can make me laugh even when im in the worst mood.” Their innocence, the spark in their eyes makes you see all that’s good in life. If they can live focusing on the good, than so can we. It’s high time we all realize this fact, just as they did.
These children are special; we should be humbled to be spending time with them. Because their experiences we all could learn and gather strength from. We live in the same planet, we breath the same air, so why the indifference? Give a day out of your trip to these kids and you’ll know it’s worth it. There are many orphanages in Goa where you could volunteer from a day to however long you want.
“CHILDREN WALKING TALL “is one such organization, working in partnership with an Indian Trust of the same name based at Mango House in Goa to provide food, shelter, medical care and education to some of the most underprivileged children in the area. The Indian Trust works directly with approximately 100 slum children and ensures that formal schooling will be provided to the children along with a fun and safe environment to play study and be creative. In addition they work together with other partners where they identify that they are best placed to deliver support to underprivileged Goan children and their families in accordance with their objectives and standards.
BETHESDA LIFE CENTRE, established in 2001, is a home for children and women in distress. They started taking care of three children who had no one to care for and a lady who was in distress. Today 135 children are under their care and 80 women and their children who are in distress and are affected with incurable diseases. They also run a school for children with learning difficulties “Risingstar” with 80 students.
EL SHADAI child rescue is run by a group of individuals fired with the zeal for ensuring equal opportunities for all children, regardless of race, caste, religion, community or economic status. Based in Goa, India, child rescue has been working in various states of India striving to implement the Childs rights act 2003/05 for orphans street children and children coming from economically desperate conditions.
There are many more of such organizations, all we have to do is search, you’ll get to know about it through the locals, guides or just surfing the net will get you all that you need to know. It is important for us to understand that being there for these children will be very helpful in the long run. They are the future and god knows we could have the next president in the making! Don’t just volunteer when you’re on your vacation but when you’re back home as well. Those kids need you and maybe you need them just as much as they do. As James Michener (author) said, “I was born to a woman I never knew, and raised by another who took in orphans. I do not know my background, my lineage, my biological or cultural heritage. But when I meet someone new, I treat them with respect… For after all, they could be my people.”