Saturday, May 12, 2012

A new journey of Ummeed

It has been a while that I wrote a sane article on this blog. My friends tell me that they don't get what I write these days. The truth is that I have lost for a while an appetite to share my learning with others. I have additionally lost peaceful writing time as so many things have been happening concurrently.

I can tell you few things what's going on to get some sanity back on this blog:

1) Today was my last day at National Public School, Shahdara where I was teaching 3rd graders. I left this school because I figured out a very brutal truth about private schools in general. They are low-income on facade. Their lands are illegal as well as their financial documents are forged. The teachers are forced to sign on the salaries they do not receive. They sign it because they are not aptly qualified. Students' parents are paying Rs 50 for socks that costs Rs 5 when these parents are not able to afford school notebook of Rs 18. Teach for India strongly believes that this is where we are more needed as the kids coming out from these schools are deprived of basic rights to their education. Right now, I don't have any tangible evidence to this information that I am writing here. So, I cannot do a whistle-blowing at legal level.I was not able to give my 100% however to this forced poverty environment. And the only way I could impact this school at the macro level is only when I have the authority over the actions of my principal. One day probably I will. Leaving my students have been a tough decision but I am certain that it is going to take me closer to their overall merit. I accept that discontinuing in this school is an unfinished commitment but I have realized it was critical.

2) I have started teaching at Ummeed, near Qutub Minar since day before yesterday during the evenings. This school is a residential shelter home for street children. These students have not seen an alternate comfortable way of living. They have been exposed to extreme poverty symptoms from drug exposure to murder covictions to rapes. I will be concurrently teaching assorted group of boys of different age groups and grade levels. My work will not only involve imparting academic knowledge but also life skills and overall management of students' lives.

3) I am shifting to a new house tomorrow. I have been staying alone for over four years now and it has been a great journey. I was looking for an economical rented "Home" for myself and for rare visits of my parents. In South Delhi, since everything is so illegal, unplanned and exorbitantly high-valued that it took me around 1000kms on my Activa for almost daily East to South Delhi road trips to finally accomplish this feat.

4) I am having few social confrontations these days. The other day I confronted Deluxe toilet authorities at New Delhi Railway Station for allowing men in Ladies Toilet. A day before that, I confronted a Senior Bank Manager who refused to accept a Rs500 damaged note withdrawn from his Bank's ATM.He redirected me to the company which fills cash in the atm, which redirected me back to the Bank. The words "This is a great story for Aaj Tak" did the trick for me!

5) I have been out of Facebook for over five months now and I have not been missing it at all. I chose to do it because by being on it I was somewhere accepting the contradictory lifestyle it propagates - of social show-offs and fake public displays of relationships. I miss however photographic skills of few friends sometimes. Rest all important news makes it way to me!

These five points hopefully gives you a slight idea of what is going on in this blogger's life. Let me know what do you think of them!

P.S. Notice the change in my profile. I have left my blogger avatar and have come out with real me.


  1. Hi Saloni,
    I have been a regular follower of your blog(through RSS) and i must say i love reading your posts and really appreciate this shift in your blog theme. From MBA admissions to TFI to now voicing out.
    Are you by any chance on FB? If yes, i would love to connect to you, my profile link:

  2. Sal - It seems a lot is going on in your mind and some angst is taking shape against the general state of affairs...we've got to talk...

  3. Thanks Rajan. That is how experience is turning out to be! Glad you noticed the change!

    Bhaiya...Yes we got to talk!

  4. Hi Saloni,
    I've been reading your blog regularly for the last year or so, and have a lot of respect for you for following your heart.. Very few people have the courage to give up a comfortable lifestyle to make a difference in the real sense of the word! So kudos to you.. Keep up the good work, good luck!