We are the World Blogfest (#WATWB) focuses on positive stories no matter where they’re found. It is all about spreading peace and humanity on social media. This month I’m very late with my WATWB post, but given the toxicity on social media, I do not want to miss adding a dose of positivity into the mix.
My story on this edition of WATWB is again from Project WHY (an organization I’ve blogged about, often) and one of its heroes, the math teacher Naresh Bhardwaj. Naresh used to work as a security guard and a shoe salesman before Project WHY helped him become a teacher.
Two weeks ago, I was in Delhi and attended the alumni meet of Naresh’s students. The stories of his 18-year career as a teacher at Project WHY would fill a book.
The alumni in the room that day have all gone on to do well: some have cleared business school entrance exams, others have applied for PHDs, one student is working two jobs, just so he can follow his passion for photography. Another wants to be a DJ. Two are preparing for the National Defence Academy entrance exams and want to join the defence forces.
All due to Naresh who ostensibly teaches them math, but has in fact given them a space to dream, a validity to their aspirations and the motivation to achieve them. All of them spoke about him, but what spoke more to me was the body language during their interactions: Naresh is obviously a good mentor, teacher, and friend, someone fun to be with, and learn from.
Here’s one of Naresh’s students talking about him:
Naresh is one of four teachers helping to raise funds for the Project WHY Okhla Centre. Without funds, this centre that reaches out to 350 children could close down.
Last November, some of the Daily (w)rite family got together to blog and raise funds for their sewing circle, and I was thrilled and grateful to see contributions coming in from India, the US, the UK and other parts of the world.
From 14-28 February, we have spoken about Project WHY via the Show the Love, Save a School Blogathon. Check out the posts on the linky list in that post to see the support Naresh and his peers have received.
Today, on the last day of the blogathon, I hope Naresh’s colleagues, and the kids he teaches continue to receive the support they deserve.
Collectively, Rs 330,139 (4639 USD) of the targeted Rs 4,88183 (6860 USD) has been reached. Some of you have already chipped in, and I give my thanks.We would also send you individual communications high-fiving you for your support!
If you’d like to give them a little, please donate to their fundraiser now. It is open for the next two weeks.
Please share the fundraiser on your social media ( #HelpMithuSaveSchool ) and help Naresh take it home.
Have you met a teacher like Naresh Bhardwaj ? How did they make you feel? Would you support Naresh’s quest to save the Project WHY Okhla centre where he works?
From 4th to 10th March 2019, Daily (w)rite will take part in the Write Tribe Festival of Words, but with a twist.
Anouradha Bakshi, founder of Project WHY, will be taking over, and all posts will be from her. So I’ll see you again in the coming weeks on your blogs, but not on mine.
This post is part of the monthly We Are the World Blogfest: I’d like to invite you to join, if you haven’t as yet, to post the last Friday of each month a snippet of positive news that shows our essential, beautiful humanity.
The co-hosts for this month are: Shilpa Garg, Inderpreet Uppal, Sylvia Stein, Peter Nena and Belinda Witzenhausen
Here’s a sampler of this blogfest. Click here to know more. Sign up here and add your bit of cheer to the world on the next installment of March 29, 2018!
Please join Daily (w)rite on its Facebook Page in case you’d like to be heard by this community. If you liked this post, you can have posts delivered to your inbox by subscribing via email.
So nice to visit your page and find your latest positive contribution each time. Thank you Damyanti 🙂
Thanks so much for visiting, Ian. IN a dark world, what choice do have but be positive?
Hi Damyanti – what a wonderful entry to the WATWB … it’s amazing to read how people will always help others … and I loved his words: “All due to Naresh who ostensibly teaches them math, but has in fact given them a space to dream, a validity to their aspirations and the motivation to achieve them.” That space to dream and the support to develop those dreams into reality …
It’ll be lovely having Anouradha here with us in your place … it’s great you can make the trips to Delhi to keep up with Project Why’s achievements and let us know about them … Congratulations to Anouradha opening these doors for those who wish to learn … cheers Hilary
What an inspiring teacher Naresh is! Thank you so much Damyanti for sharing his story. Good luck with your “Festival of Words” in the next week or so … I’ll keep an eye out on Twitter for any future posts. Warm and wild blessings, Deborah.
Wow. Naresh Bhardwaj sounds like such an inspirational teacher!
And I agree, social media can definitely get toxic sometimes. It’s always nice to see some positivity mixed in!
Such a wonderful teacher he is! An ideal teacher, who is not just a good mentor, but also an inspiration to the students.
Teaching is an important job, and not always easy. Good teachers like Naresh deserve all the support and appreciation we can give them. Thank you for sharing this!
Thanks for sharing!… 🙂
“The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.” Kahlil Gibran
Naresh does lead them to the thresholds of their minds–I must say I didn’t expect that from a math teacher, which only shows up my preconceived notions on teachers.
Well, our preconceived notions are due to the religious and social environment that we grew up in.. when one leaves that environment and into reality, one often finds conflict with those notions.. especially in today’s modern world.. with technology you and I are practically neighbors… 🙂
Now, there are those who become closed minded and choose to stay in the comfort of that environment “Life is a process of becoming… a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.” Anais Nin
And there are those who will venture forth and evolve and adapt, “Any piece of knowledge I acquire today has a value at this moment exactly proportioned to my skill to deal with it. Tomorrow, when I know more, I will recall that piece of knowledge and use it better. “ Mark van Doren
As for me;
He’s an old hippie
Don’t fit in with the old
Too old for the new,
Not trying to make a fuss
Just trying to adjust.
That being said, until we meet again have a wonderful weekend and it is all that you wish for it to be… 🙂
Salute to Naresh. People like him keeps the hope alive that world is still not bereft of good people. Thanks for sharing.
There are definitely more good people in this world than bad, that’s for sure. Thanks, Indira, and please help spread the word about Naresh so he can keep his school open.
Some teachers are really saints.
This teacher is definitely very motivated.
He gave them far more than math lessons.
That he certainly did. Such a wonderful, inspirational teacher.
“A space to dream, a validity to their aspirations and the motivation to achieve them.” What a wonderful testament, Damyanti. It’s lovely to hear about the successes – great for the students and the world.
Diana, Naresh’s story and the successes moved me. Thank you for visiting, and your comment.
Good teachers can make all the difference. We need to support him.
Teachers don’t get enough attention or congratulations for all the work they do. Naresh Bhardwaj is obviously a wonderful teacher who’s inspired so many young people to attain their dreams. The world is much improved by him and by so many other mostly unsung heroic teachers who also motivate their students to be curious, to learn, and to do good.
Yes, Sharon. All teachers do a good job, but these kind of unsung heroes deserve so much credit, and support.