Tree Planting and Distribution of Festive Clothes on the Occasions of Deepavali and Sri M's Birthday in Kotagiri, Nilgiris District, Tamil Nadu
Team SSM Coimbatore decided to celebrate the twin occasions of Deepavali and the birthday of Sri M on the 31st of October at three villages: Dhoddani, Horasholai, and Kannerimukku in Kotagiri, a hill station situated in the Nilgiris District, in collaboration with the Thurigai Trust.
The team members made an early start at 6:30 a.m. and reached around 9 a.m, at the three schools which were the venues for two special activities: tree plantation as part of the MyTree Initiative of The Satsang Foundation; and the distribution of festive clothes to 160 children who study in these schools. These activities coincided beautifully with the 'Welcome Back to School' initiative that the Government of Tamil Nadu has launched to encourage children to resume formal learning.
The children were so enthused that they gave the team members a rousing welcome filled with joy and unalloyed innocence. They rushed to unload the saplings and gardening tools from the vehicle. A brief explanation of the tree planting activity and its significance preceded the children's zealous efforts to take ownership of the saplings and plant them with much love and care.
They worked hand in hand with the SSM team members to plant 25 saplings which included mango, guava, marigold, calophyllum or mastwood, aristolochia or Easwaramooli, a medicinal herb that grows well in hilly regions.
Soon it was time to distribute the festive clothes that a SSM team member from Ahmedabad had magnanimously sent as Deepavali gifts to these precious children.
Their eyes lit up with excitement and joy as they received these fine clothes while they partook of sweets and savories. Such are the simple blessings of life!
The SSM Coimbatore team members were truly overwhelmed by the show of sheer gratitude and satisfaction of these wondrous little beings.