The serene grounds of St Paul’s Cathedral in Kolkata were transformed on 11th September into a football pitch! CRS established football teams for boys several years ago as a means of nurturing teamwork, giving children motivation and developing a sense of pride. A donation from Melbourne Parish Church in the UK earlier this year funded new kits and equipment for some of the teams.
The most recent match was a friendly with 20 boys from G B Lane School in navy blue strips facing a combined team of 19 from Basanti Devi Colony and Sukantanagar school dressed in yellow. Both teams played well but B D Colony and Sukantanagar were the victors by five goals to nil. The spirit of friendship was high between the teams and they are looking forward to meeting each other at the next match.
Many of the children living in city slums have a poor diet lacking in essential nutrients. One widespread problem is consuming insufficient iron causing iron deficiency anaemia. Iron helps the body to produce haemoglobin, a substance in red blood cells that enables them to carry oxygen around the body. This form of anaemia can leave sufferers tired and short of breath. On 9th September, CRS organised an iron deficiency anaemia clinic at Bibibagan which was sponsored by the Indian company, Larsen & Turbo. Prior to the event, the health team spent two days making the community aware of anaemia and the importance of having their children checked. On the day, 80 children between the ages of 4 and 14 were checked by Dr Sumit Shaw. They received iron supplements, along with deworming tables and syrup. 23 of the children showing particularly low haemoglobin levels had blood tests, administered by pathologists from Good Health Diagnostics, and will receive follow-up treatment.
Across India on 5th September, children report to school as usual but classes are replaced by activities of celebration to show appreciation for teachers. Events took place at all the CRS Education Centres including the Training Center for Differently-abled Persons (TCDP). The young people with different physical and mental disabilities normally learn skills such as chalk making and book binding. But Teachers’ Day provided them with an opportunity to thank their instructors, give them gifts and entertain them with dance. The students were also watched by their carers, usually their mothers, many of whom travel some distance to attend the TCDP. They greatly value the opportunity that the CRS Centre gives to nurture their children in a positive atmosphere.