10 years with TARA Tots

Since I joined TARA over 3 years ago, every day is a new adventure. Working with children is a daily wonder, because of their ability to be children again, to play, and to grow up.

Looking back, I would say that one of TARA's strengths is to be able to anticipate and adapt to the unforeseen, no matter how brutal it may be. Indeed, we had reorganized the programs even before the first confinement of the year 2020 was announced. TARA Tots staff went from a daily roaster to a weekly one, with the staff residing in the house for one or more weeks. The children could no longer go out to play and started their online classes. In fact, some of the children started school online for the first time, which was very unsettling for them at first.

In addition to the task of caretaking and support, the staff have been managing the children’s online classes as well. TARA had to request exceptional donations in order to be able to provide all the children with tablets and computers so that they could continue their education online. Most children are not that fortunate - according to a UNICEF article (India Highlights - March 10, 2021) "...only one in four children has access to digital devices and an Internet connection."

TARA is dedicated to support its staff to evolve professionally and develop their skills. For example, Jyoti, the nanny at TARA Tots, has been promoted to the position of Health Officer for all TARA houses. Kaisa, who was working as a social worker at TARA Tots, was promoted to the newly created position of health counselor (mental and physical).

The crisis had its silver linings. Due to recurring water damage, we successfully moved TARA Tots to a new location. In 2021, we welcomed two new children, Zafia and Sony, who were rescued from a severe state of malnutrition. Asmita and Arisha, two sisters living in TARA Tots met their brother for the first time in 3 years. They described it as one of the best moments of their lives.

In conclusion, I would like to express gratitude to the people who have given us their moral and financial support : the administrators, partners, donors, sponsors, volunteers and supporters. It is by working together we can assure that these children are taken out of poverty and violence and are given a future.

Posted on 02 March 2022