Weekends were something that I, like everyone else, looked forward to. The thought of sleeping till the sun had come and gone, watching absolutely nothing on the TV, playing games on the computer, reading everyone’s updates on Facebook and attending music and dance classes made me wait for them like no other thing.
Today, I still wait for weekends; and as eagerly as ever. However, the reasons are slightly different. Of course I still look forward to being busy doing nothing, but if I had to pick out THAT one thing, it has got nothing to do with ‘I, Me and Myself’. It is those few hours every weekend that I spend teaching English to kids with full smiles and eager eyes. ‘Cos that is what you get to do when you are a part of Make A Difference!
Make A Difference, or rather MAD as we call it, is a platform that empowers youth to become change leaders who drive positive social impact and create self-sustaining communities by educating the children at risk. And we MADsters, as we call ourselves, love being with the kids we teach and enjoy every minute we spend with them! It is like no other teacher-student relationship; in fact, it feels like we are a part of this one big, happy family!
It all started on the 30th of September. A group discussion session; a personal interview, and I got through, the then youngest MADster of Coimbatore! A round of teacher training (so that the children get nothing but the best classroom experience) and curriculum training (a ‘how-to’ on using the Cambridge University Press English books) later, we were ready to begin our journey as teachers!
Thinking about it today, I realize that I had always wanted to teach… someone, somewhere, somehow. I felt the urge to contribute to the society in my own little way. And I did not have to wait too long for the opportunity. Now, every Sunday when I walk into my classroom, I teach my 6 kids and in return, I learn much more. Their cute questions, their innocent faces and yes, even their naughtiness. They just brighten up my day.
It is no joke being a MADster. Yes, we have a lot of fun. But when it comes to work, we get down to some serious business; be it the City Circle Meetings or the Credit System, you don’t be a MADster just-for-fun. And the awesome MAD family is always there to support you – call them up during the wee hours of the day or in the middle of the night, they’ll never see you down. They’ll be there to help you, cheer you up. They are the best. They are family.
Friends, those of you who want to do something for the society; MAD is the place for you to be. And I can give it to you in writing, “You’ll have the best experience ever!”
At the risk of sounding very emotional, I’d just like to say one thing – I love my MAD family. I love the way we go MAD. I’m proud to be a MADster!
This article is dedicated to the fantastic founders of MAD and to all the 1300 MADsters out there across 23 cities in India who are making a difference, every single day!