by Shalu Mehrotra for BISMumbai

The 5th edition of ‘Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham’ - a Festival of Feelings Workshop was organised by Prafulta on 19 January 2020 at St. Dominic Savio High School Andheri for 446 students of classes 5, 6 and 7, from various shools in Andheri, alongwith their parents. This was a free-of-cost initiative, supported by L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering.

The preparatory work began a couple of months ago, with over 1000 children expressing interest in this festival, despite it being in the midst of their Unit Test. Students enjoyed the story and drawing session on 'Handling Difficult Emotions', while their parents attended the session on 'Effective Parenting'.

The rationale behind a programme such as this, is to increase human interaction amidst the heightened influence of social media, while learning to handle feelings at an early stage since it is vital to emotional health and to genuine maturing of society. Since parents too are struggling to cope, this is envisioned as a platform where one can share feelings and discuss one’s problems.

One of the students, while returning home post-programme, said, “Gussa bura nahin hai, kaisa dikhana hai, dekhna padega” (It’s not wrong to get angry, I need to discover how to express it). 35 trained counsellors conducted the sessions for students and parents, together with a young bunch of 32 energetic psychology student-volunteers from Xavier's and Nanavati College.