As the name suggests, Value Education Program aims at inculcating children, the future, with values and virtues. A thousand steps may be taken to make our lives more comfortable but without human wellbeing comfort becomes a burden. It cannot be denied that humans have never seen the degree of comfort that we have today. Yet, man has not been as miserable. Every coin has two sides; anything that has the power to create also has the power to destroy. Sadly humans largely focus on the latter. It is essential that we dive into the reasons behind this. Miseries continue to proliferate because of human nature to be involved at the superficial level of things. If we scrape just the surface it becomes evident that all the misery is due to fear; fear generates corruptions of the mind. That is why in “The Gita” – ABHAYAM – Fearlessness is considered as first virtue. Humans are not in need to gain virtues but to get rid of these corruptions. Human, as a being, has virtues inherently within himself. A fearless person has no need for courage or confidence. Anger, need of approval, jealousy and all the other defilements are nothing but fear branching out.
The culture that children live in today is very different than it was a decade or 2 ago. Advent of mobile phones and the internet has brought a decisive shift in society. A conscious few use this boon for its benefits; children, on the other hand, are becoming victims of peer pressure and propaganda. The countless movies give out unrealistic impressions of happiness that are destructive to one’s wellbeing. Children being very gullible follow these impressions, causing harm to oneself and people around them. Preys of social media are driven into doing whatever it takes to gain public approval. Moreover today’s lifestyle leaves no extra time for professionals, due to which parents are unable to spend required time with their children. This lack of attention from family leads to destructive methods for getting attention. We have identified that students consider rash behavior to be worthy of getting noticed; this results into individuals turning into goons.
We have joined hands with Naraindas Morbai Budhrani Trust, Mumbai, in helping kids become conscious towards their actions and their consecutive outcomes. The age of 11, 12 and 13 is when an individual can be channeled towards a healthy life pattern, after which it becomes almost impossible to change one’s psyche. Considering this we work with children of 6th, 7th and 8th grade. As per the recommendation of NBMT we referred to the book “Be in the driver’s seat” by JP Vasvani to construct our modules. The book shed light on various aspects of a healthy lifestyle like knowing oneself, importance of time, life goal, anger control, effects of lying, being in the present moment, etc. Dada JP Vasvaniji has laid clear emphasis on the fact that only personal individual efforts and experiences build one’s life; experiences gained by another cannot help bring one’s wellbeing. Throughout the academic year we run the following modules:
- Rapport building
- Be Yourself (Self-awareness)
- Every breath is precious (Time management)
- Where are you heading? (Goal setting)
- Power of Now (Present moment awareness)
- Overcome fear
- Speak nothing but Truth
- Do not let irritation sap your energy (Energy management)
- Stamp out stress (Stress control)
- Create heaven within yourself (Gratitude)
- Unclutter your mind (Organization skills)
- Give up your ego
- Bring a glow in someone’s heart (Helpfulness)
- Chat with your best friend (Friendship)
- Anger management
- Love, Give and Share
- Never mind, let it go. (Forgiveness)
- Set yourself free (Responsibility)
- Satsang (Being in good company)
Currently we work with about 1800+ students of 9 schools in Ahmedabad. Our teaching methods consist of activities like games, poetries, role-plays, arts and crafts, docu-dramas, stories, etc. as kids are more receptive to and excited about this method of learning. Through interactive activities it becomes easy for children to understand and absorb the results of their actions. It has been 3 years since we began VEP. Voluntary feedbacks from parents and regularity of parents attending parents’ meetings tell us that our efforts are reaping fruits. Due to various reasons children get stranded from their families and values; they tend to open up to us and share their issues. When necessary we organize parents’ meetings and discuss issues in a general manner. This is done by addressing an issue and explaining the parents about benefits and losses they have to incur pertaining to that topic. Not only the children but also the parents are being trained through the program as the issues involve working with the parents. Children are encouraged to discuss Value Education topics with their parents; conversing about core ethics with parents helps to break down the cultural gap between children and parents.
School Management or the teachers affiliated with any school are requested to contact us and understand the program. They can be trained so as to apply VEP in their known schools