Poornam, an annual event organized by Unmish, a learning centre for differently abled children and adults took a different turn this year. The event was online with entries by special children for various competitions which spanned over two days. “The current situation came with its own challenges but also several benefits. We were able to get children from all over the globe to participate with ease,” said founder and principal of Unmish, Mrs. Nita Diwan.
This year Poornam was celebrated by our children virtually. Our first of its kind Global Online Fest was celebrated on the 21st and 22nd of November 2020 , registrations had opened three months prior to the event. We witnessed the love and support from across the globe; London, Bangkok and Dubai. All our events had dignitaries from various field to judge these phenomenal entries. Adding another special touch to the morning,children from across India ; Pondicherry, Mumbai, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, participated from various Non-Governmental Organisations(NGO’s) who support similar causes.
Stalwarts Like Mr Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Mr Abir Chatterjee, Mr Tanmoy Bose came forward to participate in the event and interacted with the children and rendered priceless support and motivation to the children.
The first day’s competition consisted of “Dhwani”, a vocal and musical category which enabled children to get a multisensory experience while developing their sensation, perception, and cognitive abilities. Mr. Tanmoy Bose, the celebrity guest for the event is Indian percussionist, musical producer, film actor and composer. Mr. Bose helped them to pick his top 10 performances.After which the audience got to witness encouraging words from our celebrity judge, stating“the parents of these children are the real Durgas and Shivas, and their strength and patience is unbelievable. The idea of being compassionate, of having patience and dedication with these children, that too not just for a day or two but for years should be talked about.”
He started off by making children recite the syllables of Mridangam, Pakhawaj and Tabla and the results he got were phenomenal. The twists by the tongue while reciting these syllables, and the breathing we do with the rhythm is in a way Pranayam for musicians. All the children who go to speech therapists just recite “ Taka dhin taka jhum taki ta din din” they learnt how to lift the lip and tongue. And their speech started getting better.
The Second days event Compose was graced by the presence of our celebrity judge Mr. Sabhyasachi Mukherjee, who doesn’t need an introduction. He is synonymous to couture not only in India, but throughout the world. Mr Mukherjee shared his thoughts regarding the initiative by saying that the experience to judge such an event is overwhelming as he had been to many other contests for the last 10-15 years including beauty pageants, dramatics, in different business schools but Poornam has been very emotionally overwhelming. He later add on to his previous thought by sharing very touching and heart-warming words of appreciation where he mentioned that this is a lesson in humility of all of us, we take so many things in our lives for granted that only when we see life through somebody else’s perspective most probably not as fortunate as we are that we realize how beautiful the world. What has happened in modern society right now, when we look at fashion, food ,at architecture, at music we think we are losing out on beautiful essences because everything for us is moving at top speed. We have no time to think, we have no time introspect and we have no patience. We can’t really build a beautiful world without having patience; patience to understand, to comprehend. If we give it time, wisdom and if we give it a little bit of integrity we will be able to decode things we don’t understand, we will be able to enjoy our lives, see the world through a very different perspective.
Not leaving out our little viewers as well and Mr. Mukherjee himself being a great fan of animation movie, quoted a song from one of the Disney animation films Pocahontas where the protagonist says ,“that you think the only people are people who can think and talk like you, when you walk the footsteps of a stranger you will learn things that you never knew.”
Mr Mukherjee went on to address the viewers and convey a message by stating that it is very important for us to make an effort to understand things that we don’t understand, give life a chance, give other people a chance,build a more inclusive society. On supporting the concept of inclusivity and sensitization he added on by saying, “Only when we learn to live in a more inclusive society, we learn to live without fear, we learn to live with harmony and happiness and I am trying to build an inclusive society through fashion because I think that you know clothing is an expression of ones intellect and I’m very overwhelmed.” To extend his patronage Mr Mukherjee mentioned that he was very honoured and very grateful to be a part of this wonderful event and will be part of it year afteryear.
Last but not the least, Our celebrity judge Mr.Abir Chatterjee pumped up the spirits of our contestants by sharing words of encouragement for the event Breaking Records. He spoke about how believing in yourself and success go hand in hand, and that challenges are the only way to move forward. He said, “What I try to learn from these children is to try to be happy with smaller things. Children also have no filter and they speak their mind. As adults, we should learn from them to speak uninhibitedly and live a life without any worries!”