How volunteering with HT Paathshala changed my life

  • An HT Initiative, Hindustan Times
  • Updated: Apr 29, 2016 18:21 IST
25 year old Ankit Kumar Agrawal is a Paathshala volunteer. A student pursuing Masters in Public Administration from IGNOU, he is preparing for the Civil Services exam. (Special arrangement )

Ankit Kumar Agrawal

“As an aspiring Civil Servant, I am driven to working towards bringing positive, long term change. I was on the look-out for opportunities that would let me contribute to society when I learnt about HT’s Paathshala initiative in association with the NGO Swabalambam. Here was a platform where I could bring about definitive change and touch the lives of underprivileged children.

Education is empowerment. I feel blessed that I could do my bit to teach these children and pave the way to making them self reliant. I think Swabalamban and Paathshala provide a great platform to citizens and sensitize them to come forward and contribute to society.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed teaching Social Studies, Geography, Political Science and English to senior students 2 to 3 times a week. It’s been both satisfying and rewarding to see and know that making a difference is very much possible.”

Anshul Srivastav

Paathshala volunteer, Anshul Srivastav, 29, is a Junior Assistant at the Entertainment Tax Department of Uttar Pradesh. (Special arrangement)

“This was a first for me and I took a chance out of curiosity. JustKhelo and HT Paathshala – how did playing and teaching come together? All that JustKhelo required was some time spent playing any sport with underprivileged children after work or office. It was that simple and I went.

But what I experienced was an eye opener. At JustKhelo, I was greeted by a bunch of smiling children eager to play football. I started to play a game for fun and soon a huge group had joined in. An hour flew past and I realized that I’d caught a glimpse of how playing a sport can bring out a child’s personality and teach them what no books can.

It’s hard to tell children what a team really is or what it is to share and express one’s needs amongst others without putting them in the situation. And what better way to do it than through sport. It not only hones their leadership skills but makes them whole individuals. But most of all, I am happy to say that I learnt a lot from my JustKhelo session and I’m looking forward to many more sessions.”

About HT Paathshala

Hindustan Times Paathshala is a CSR initiative to support the education of underprivileged children. Over 70,353 lives have been impacted under various projects of Paathshala since its launch in April, 2012. The volunteer program was initiated on 7 Dec 2015 with our partner NGOs to make volunteering accessible to those interested in devoting time for children in need. Be it a donation or a purposeful hour spent with underprivileged children, small actions make a big difference.

If you’re a volunteer, come forth and share your story. We’d love to know your experience. Whether you teach academics, sports, art or music, your story can inspire others to join this movement and bring about change.

#HTPaathshala #ShareYourStory

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