1. Description of Our Community
Kolkata, the city of joy, is one of the biggest homes to culture in India. The city is known for its enthusiastic approach towards festivals and tradition. Despite the various castes and communities that dwell here, the city projects a picture of sheer harmony and joy. In Kolkata, you find solace, peace and your true calling. Whether it be the old age community living together celebrating Durga Puja like a strong knit family, or the Anglo Indian community in Bow Barracks decorating their homes on Christmas to show the world their culture still lives. Whether it be the Potter community of Kumartuli toiling in the sun to give the world the most exquisite ceramic pots or the fishermen in Babughat working all day for the fishes that define the city's cuisine. Kolkata has almost different worlds within itself, and you see them blend when we celebrate. Be it a cricket match or the FIFA World Cup, you'll always find a lane decorated with flags, even if it might not belong to our own country. Such is the passion here and such are the lives we lead. The city has the sweetest dialect and even sweeter people. And it all lies in the mutual feeling of finding it our home. At Lakshmipat Singhania Academy (LSA) we learn how to interact with local communities and celebrate each of them. It is a true privilege to live among such rich cultures and LSA not only helps us recognize its importance but also encourages us to help those communities. Together, we aim to bring change for those who live near our homes as well as hearts.
2. Summary of Our Project
This year’s theme of Cyber Fair is very close to our heart – Be Kind and Unite. At Lakshmipat Singhania Academy we work on the various aspects of social service from offering meals to the needy to organising blood donation camps. Our students regularly donates cereals, grains, pulses, dress material & books to various NGOs. Students of the academy have stepped out and visited different NGOs and spent quality time with specially abled children to senior citizens.
3. Our Computer and Internet Access
A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:more than 50%
B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:more than 6
C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection
D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
In order to well represent communities, it is very important to get to know them properly. This year, the biggest problem we had to overcome, was learning how to gain the trust of these communities. Since we were dealing with extremely vulnerable communities, it was very important for us to take formal permissions from these communities which was a daunting task. The key was to maintain our patience, and reassure them that we were just mere school students who wanted to help represent them. From the slum children to the booksellers in College Street, everyone was a little adamant about giving these interviews, by virtue of human nature. But this did not deter us. We worked our way through contacting all authorities involved and securing their confidence. Through resilience, an open heart and a genuine objective, we were able to strike a chord with these communities and form a healthy rapport with them.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
Communities are an intrinsic part of civilization. They share values, beliefs , traditions and experiences. But the true portrait of beauty lies in how these different communities coexist with one another. How they draw inspiration from each other and assimilate each other’s cultures. But unfortunately, a large number of these communities have been overlooked for far too long. Our motto, “Be Kind and Unite” is to highlight these forgotten communities and showcase what they have to offer. These communities aren’t unknown, they are just taken for granted. But the truth is that they have as much to give to us as we have to them. Through this project, we aim to give these communities their much deserved recognition and dues.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
In the midst of our busy student life, this project gave us an opportunity to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. It reminded us about all of the culture that exists around us which defines, not only the city’s character, but also our upbringing. It gave us a chance to simply get back in touch with the roots of humanity, and give something back to the communities who so beautifully nurtured the city and culture we grew up around. The project also helped us develop interview skills and understand the technical aspects surrounding it. We learned how to create a website, work together as a team in a collaborative manner in order to be productive and yield better output.