Recently, as children throughout India returned to school after their summer vacation, the question they were asking their friends was: “What did you do during the holidays?”
This year, children from the BAPS Children’s Forum were involved in a wide variety of events, so they had plenty to tell their friends about. Brief details are given below of the major activities.
Bal Sabha Pushpamala Competition
Over 20,000 balaks and balikas participated in this competition in which they had to memorise selected sections of the Bal Sabha course book.
Speech Competition and Cultural programs
To encourage the children in public speaking, a Children’s Speech Competition was held. Cultural programs featuring dramas and dances were presented by balaks. The balaks of Surat, Sabarkantha, Bhavnagar and other centres presented ballets and dramas such as: ‘Virasat’, ‘Khoj’, ‘Sanskarjyot’, ‘Mandirma Prabhu Biraje Chhe’, and others.
Prayers for the Ill
Over 70 balaks and balikas of Kolkata visited local hospitals to pray at the bedside of over 1,000 patients for their speedy recovery and future good health.
Thousands of devotees in Amdavad, Navsari, Bhavnagar and other cities attended the excellent programmes of devotional songs presented by specially trained balaks. In Vadodara, a Shishu Kirtan Aradhana was presented by balaks studying in standards 1 to 4.
Yogi Ruchi Mukhpath Revision
Scripture memorising competitions were held over the previous year to commemorate the Bal Pravrutti Golden Anniversary. During the vacation, revision of whatever the balaks and balikas had memorised was organised so that the spiritual passages remain fresh in their minds.
At Delhi, Gandhinagar, Sankari and Dhuliya special assemblies and shibirs informed balaks and balikas about Satsang, education, health and other important topics.
Other Special Programs
* Balaks of Mumbai and Surat were taken on a pilgrimage of selected pilgrim places.
* Coaching classes in vocal and instrumental music were arranged for balaks in Vadodara and other centres.
* Training class in Yoga and Karate.
* Sports competitions.
* Reading classes.
* For volunteers of children activities: special training through Bal Pravrutti Karyakar Sammmelans was organised.
Groups of karyakars teamed up to engage in detailed research of various selected topics, such as, ‘Importance of Character in Children’, ‘BAPS Bal Mandal in the next year’, and others.