Varadhi Programme Delhi Public School Visit to ZPHS Aavurupally,

Aavurupalli village, Madugula Mandal, Mahaboobnagar District, Andhra Pradesh

On December 17, 2011

Sun was still asleep, birds still nestling in their nests, breeze of silent cool wind, clad in white uniforms, one by one student started gathering in the school premises. They had aback bag filled with eatables, snacks and water bottles and in the front pack, a note book and writing materials Anxious parents, worried parents and sportive parents along with their wards covered in warm clothing meeting, greeting and exchanging with co-parents were present in school premises by 5:30 am.

42 students from class VI to X, along with Mrs Charu Mathur, Social Science Department Head, Mrs Kathyaini Teacher, and Sri Siva Rama Krishna Sanskrit teacher along with two drivers and two attenders and accompanied by two VMF team members started at 6:00 am from DPS School Nacharam, Hyderabad. Aavurpally is at a distance of 75km from Hyderabad via outer ring road, a journey of two hours, with a short break at Ayyasagara Kshetram for breakfast. Ayyasagara Kshetram is quite famous pilgrimage centre for ancient temple Veerabhadrappa temple. This area is protected under forest zone, has a nursery. The undisrupted scenic beauty is an added attraction.

 After refreshing and mingling with nature, the troop proceeded to Aavurupalli which is 15Km from Ayyasagara kshetram. At the entrance one can find the ruined guard post known as ‘Buruju’ in Telugu structure still standing erect. ZPHS Aavurupalli students marched in row and greeted DPS students with flowers. Then another group of students welcomed these students in traditional Kolatam dance trained by Sri Shettipalli Mallaiah garu-VMF Culture wing's senior most member. Then following the dancers, DPS students also paired in twos formed two rows and followed the ZPHS High School campus. Amidst stands the huge banyan tree with roots down. Enjoying the warm sun under the shade of banyan DPS children surrounded the circle formed by ZPHS Kolatam troupe. Some taking pictures, shooting videos and clapping their hands ushered to the jubilant moment that crossed all boundaries. For a moment all were perplexed and involved to the rhythmic beats, harmonium tune and the racking sounds of Kolatam.

Then, both school students gathered for prayer and collectively recited their school prayers. As an exchange, DPS students also sang beautiful song from 3Idiots movie, accompanied by guitar played by one of the students.

Then, two DPS students and Four ZPHS students were formed into group and set out on exploration visit, to know about village life, agriculture, livelihood, and culture. As part of the curriculum, DPS students were given a questionnaire to collect information.

They return after 2hours, carrying bunch of cotton, sunflower and hibiscus flowers. Few had bottle gourd, brinjals, raw tamarind, and tomatoes. The pinkish cheeks, twilight in the eyes, tired legs did speak of the unimaginable adventure and trekking they had going through cotton fields, paddy fields, harvested-barren fields. Yet the city lads were gathering information from rural counterparts and noting it down.

They also could notice, believe and understand the social problems especially ''Child Marriage" prevalent in region of Mahaboobnagar Village. One of the girl child of Class VIII was married off, who attends the school. (The school teachers protested and did talk to the village elders regarding Child marriage being an offence. The village society and culture being so rigid that the marriage was solemnized quietly by villagers without any notice. Parents are now sending the girl to school as school authority has forced them to do so).
Child labour is also quite common- as most of these students go and work in the form during harvesting season to shoulder the responsibility with the mother who works as labourer. These rural kids are quite well exposed to both theoretical and practical aspects of knowledge.

After relishing sumptuous  bit spicy lunch comprising of Rice, Dal cooked with Leafy Vegetable, Mixed Vegetable Curry, Rasam, Curd, Butter Milk and of course Sweet-Sonpapadi, students gathered for at the ground for sharing their experiences. ZPHS Aavurpalli students performed two group dances trained by Ms Sarita-VMF Cultural team member. Both school students came forward to share their experiences. It was nice to see the DPS students made good effort to speak in Telugu so that the ZPHS students could understand easily. They said they got to learn so much about village life, struggle and way of living. They sounded positive and also were assuring support that they would extend to their newly made friends for continuing education. They also counted it as one of the memorable days in their life and would look forward to come again. ZPHS students too got to learn few English syllables, eagerness to learn, approachable attitude from DPS students.

Teachers from both the schools too exchanged their experiences and shared their feelings.

DPS students had carried few things like, books, note books, pencil sets, pens, colour pencils, crayons and distributed to the students as part of Joy of Giving apart from one carom board, few bundles of cloths and uniforms.

DPS Nacharam has adopted ZPHS Aavurupalli and Village as part of Social responsibility and shall visit the school again shortly with another set of students. It is indeed our pleasure that, this year for Varadhi programme Delhi Public School, Nacharam, Hyderabad got associated with Vandemataram Foundation (VMF). We only wish that this bridge turns into a brotherhood help in merging the rural- urban gap and progressing together.


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