3 Jun 2020

How are you feeling? Kids talk about life after a cyclone

Punam, Shampa, and 6 to 9 year olds
KYP Visit June 3, 2020

Two weeks after Amphan, a team of TF youth trainers visited the affected community at Mograhat (YRC KYP) to check in on how children were coping with the disaster and its aftermath.

How were they feeling, what were they thinking, what could be done to restore their sense of agency and control?

The facilitators worked with two batches of kids; 6 to 9, and 10 to 13 year olds. This post is about the younger children, who were enouraged to use Emotion puppets to talk about what they were going through. It helped to break the ice quickly, and immediately identify the kids who were too traumatised to open up. There were a couple of children who would not speak up, or break down and sob.

The kids
  • 7 year olds > Rifa, Shawdia, Rumana, Ruhana
  • 8 year olds > Tamanna, Ashifa, Nasim, Rakibul, Mokim
  • 9 year olds > Asadulla, Jahirana

27 May 2020

My Cyclone Experience


Sujata Banik, 15, YRC Ujaan

I have never experienced a cyclone before.

Before it came, I thought a Cyclone would be an exciting new experience. It wasn't. I was worried because I was with my mother in Dhakuria and my father was in Narendrapur. It wasn't at all possible to contact my father, who was completely alone at the time. Worries grew as the storm raged on, and the house began to shake. It was as though nature was furious; we were helpless before it, and we could do nothing but sit indoors. I was very scared. So far, I'd always associated storms with the joy picking up mangoes. I never imagined it could be so terrible.

But the experience of the day after the storm was more significant to me.

18 Apr 2020

Girls Voices 2020

Celebration of Girls Voices

Thoughtshop Foundation, Kolkata January 2020

40 girls from our community-based Youth Resource Cells in the 14-17-year age group from 10 different geographical locations- urban, rural and peri urban, as well as from different religious backgrounds participated in this event. These girls are active members of their YRCs and they volunteered to come and speak before an audience on issues that concern them.

The expected outcome of this event was to enable adolescent girls (14-17) to become more aware of their issues; develop a voice, raise their issues with clarity and confidence.

Pre -Convening Preparation: Girls 14-17 age group from across 10 YRCs were given a few themes (shared below). They were to choose any a topic and based on their personal experiences prepare a 2 to 5-minute sharing. They were encouraged to spend some time thinking about it, clarifying their points with peers or Mentors.
(videos with Bengali voices in this page have closed captions in English)

31 Mar 2020

Support Group Diaries: M & A bring a new member

Mousumi and Ananya are both 15 years old, neighbours, and members of the same support group. They noticed a man who often visited their neighbour, 16-year-old Tani’s house. He would stay for a while, and after he was gone, Tani would look upset and dishevelled. They also noticed that Tani was withdrawn; she didn’t talk to anyone and always stayed at home. All this looked like the warning signs that were discussed at the group meetings. M & A reported this to the youth mentors, as they wanted to proactively do something to confront the family.

Support Group Diaries: Four more shorts

Sujata reaches out

Support group member Sujata (13 years) observed that Sriya (14) was always quiet and alone, so she reached out and made friends with Sriya.

Sujata discovered that Sriya was not able to concentrate on her studies because there were always strangers coming to her house. She lived with her mother, three brothers and a sister. Her father had abandoned them few years ago. Her mother was a professional party dancer, and the strange visitors were her boyfriends. Because of this, the community did not accept them, and often harassed and taunted Sriya.