Bala Mela – 24th November, 2019

collegeadmin | March 27, 2020 | 0 | NEWS

Enthusiasm filled the college corridors in the weeks leading up to the event. The students spent hours in meticulous planning and preparation. Funds were raised, Invitations were sent, gift bags prepared, games organized, food menus finalized and artistically hand-crafted decorations began to make appearances in increasing numbers. The anticipation grew, as the date drew near and more sponsors chipped in. No stone was left unturned to turn Montfort College into a Heaven for children.

Finally, on the bright and sunny morning of the 24th of November 2019, we opened the college gates and our hearts to welcome 460 eagers, excited and enthusiastic children from various Children’s Homes across Bangalore. The children were greeted with glee by their kid buddies and lead to the breakfast table.
The Inauguration ceremony dais was graced by dignitaries – Chief guest: K. Eshwar Prasad (Rtd IPS officer), Mr. Kumaraswamy Manjappa (FAI), Bro. Jenny Kuriakose (Director and Principal, Lake Montfort School) and Bro. Dhanaraj (National secretary, Montfort brothers in India). Brother Matthew Pannathanath and Bro Sebastian accompanied our guests on the stage. Chief guest: K. Eshwar Prasad shared that five “I”s were essential to success: Interest, Intelligence, Industry, Involvement, Innovation. Students of Montfort compered the event and performed for the ceremony.

Post refreshments of biscuits and juice and chocolate, the children were ready to attack the games and activity stalls. And what fun was in store for them! For every age group, there were well planned, captivating and super fun activities. The little ones aged 6 and younger screamed with glee as they played Passing the hula hoops, did Action songs, watched Mini videos, did some Wall painting & Enaction. The “Tweens” aged 7-12 were engrossed in Origami and Complete/continue the story; Human Knot, Fill-bottles-with-water-balloons, and Pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey had them all laughing-out-loud. Blindfolded Pictionary, Newspaper investigation, Balloon tower, Three-person charades, Drawing and Tug-of-war kept our teen guests, aged Age 13-17 on their toes with amusement and energy.
The Children scampered happily from one activity to the next, tagging their ‘kid buddies’ along. Meeting JoJo the Clown has he made rounds of the hallways was an unexpected treat, that had the children squealing with delight. The atmosphere radiated happiness and contentment.

Next was the event that many children had been waiting for. A stage on which to display their talent. Our young guests enthralled us with their groovy moves, stole our hearts with their melodies voices and had us in stiches with their hilarious mimicry. The volunteers from Montfort and FAI entertained the children with songs and dance as well.

All good things come to an end, and Bala Mela 2019 was brought to a close by
Senior manager from FAI – Giridhar Rajagopal (country manager), Mr. Sandeep Narayanan (HR head for the country), Mr. Naveen Muthumanikkam (General manager, IFSC) who graced the Valedictory Event.
With warm hugs and cries of “see you next year” each child was gifted a goody bag and seen off to the buses that would take them back home.

This outreach program that aims to empower children and encourage them to become responsible and productive citizens of our nation was only possible because of the generosity and kindness of our sponsors. Organizations that supported us were FAI, Lake Montfort School, Indian Oil Corporation, Cafe Azzure, and Sharon Tea stall. Numerous anonymous well-wishers, students, and alumni also helped support this event.
The Student Volunteers are in debt to the 80 Volunteers from FAI and a few alumni who lent them a helping hand.
We were honoured to have hosted children from Adarane Charitable Trust, Helping Hands, New Hope, Carmel School, RTC girls’ home, Ashadeep girls’ home, APSA school, Planet Hope, Nava Jeevan, and Amrutha Shishu nivasa and we cannot wait to meet them all again in 2020!

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