In the beginning we had a few children and eating together was special. We expressed our love by serving food to each other and it felt like a small family!
We used to go for swimming, to the parks, for one-day picnics and lots more. Doing different things together kept our sessions dynamic and fun.
The children coming for the sessions organically grew and the living room became much fuller. One Sunday we watched ‘Hum Hain Rahi Pyaar Ke’ together and realized that media is a powerful tool that must be used wisely.
Came 2010 and we initiated sessions in Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) at a village called ‘Tumni Pada’. It was a very unique experience to be engaging with the children of the forest.
We decided to create a platform to showcase the talents of all our children, to their parents and ours too. That’s how YIF’s ‘Annual Day’ was born!
While we were deeply involved in educating the children in SGNP and the neighbouring slums, we simultaneously designed and organized campaigns for youth sensitization and mobilization too.
After the dilapidated old school structure in ‘Tumni Pada’ collapsed due to the monsoons, we decided to build the first bamboo schoolhouse called ‘Masti Ki Paathshaala’
This year we also conducted some social experiments. We organized something called Sangh Mela for our children and their families. This had shopping, games, bonding and much more. It was such a hit!
Through the Sangh Mela all of us learnt a lot. We grew closer and stronger together. It was a joyous team effort to spread love and happiness.
This year we visited Phoenix Mills, Mumbai. The children were thrilled to experience such a grand mall around Christmas. The children were especially stunned to see the Hamley’s store.
By 2012 there was lots more to showcase, These are products that some of the children were making by themselves back then.
Children performing the opening dance at our 3rd Annual Day.
There was a special football program initiated for the children who were not feeling called to attend regular learning sessions. And guess what? The children were happy to be engaged through a sport!
For the one-day field trip we took the children to the annual ‘Kala Ghoda Arts Festival’ held in Mumbai. The children were awestruck looking at the installations and the variety of showcases.
The children were learning about professions, so we thought, what better way to learn can it be than by stepping into the shoes of each of our helpers. So we went to Kidzania!
100+ children went for this trip! It was by far the biggest number we had ever taken out for a trip all together.
By this year, we had begun sessions in many other villages in Sanjay Gandhi National Park. Children of one such village called ‘Chinch Pada’ had invited us for their Independence Day celebration.
Our trip to Auroville in a plane was one of the most magical things ever in our journey at Young Innovators Foundation. 30 children gasped together as the flight made its way into mid air. It was a sight worth watching!
We brought stories to life this year, not by sketching but by creating the characters, which the children enjoyed eating later on.
The children were thrilled to learn about wireless technologies and building circuits in 2014. In 2015 our children participated in IIT tech fest, they had so much fun competing with engineering students from top colleges in India.
It was one of the bestest annual days so far! The entire YIF family was present in full strength. The showcase was live streamed, so over 400 people from around the country and the world also tuned in.
We had a moment that made us feel so proud, young children had started taking charge of their ‘Paathshaala’ and also begun teaching younger children! It was an adorable sight to see little Arti especially.
This was a an especially beautiful trip, we lived by the banks of river Kundalika, farmed, cooked, stayed together like one big community and came back a little bit closer to each other and mother nature.
This year some of our elder children were connected to professional mentors in the hair and make up industry. The children received encouragement and direction from them and are progressing like never before!