My PPES experience
By:- ZOE KASUJJA
My time in India has made me realise that I can turn my dreams into a reality. I knew what I wanted to do after university but I had not seen it live nor did I really believe that it existed until I got this life changing experience to work at Pardada Pardadi Educational Society (PPES) and for that I am forever grateful. They work for a cause that is so dear to my heart and that is the empowerment of women and girls. What PPES does is prepare future female leaders by nurturing them from a young age and this is so important because this is missing worldwide and realistically as women we are still not treated the same way as our male counterparts.
Not only did I get to see the ‘brain’ of the society which is their head office in New Delhi, I got the opportunity on more than one occasion to see the ‘heart’ of their cause which is their school in Anupshahr. Meeting the girls and being around them showed me the impact that PPES has on these girls. The drive that these young ladies have for learning is immense and what PPES does is encourage that and support it in any way that they can and not only through education. What stood out to me most was their personality development programme. I had the chance to sit in on one of the classes for two days, I got to interact with the students and the teachers and talk to them about how the school has helped them as individuals but also how it has helped the neighbouring villages.
The best lesson I have learnt in India is that a smile goes a long way. I have had the chance to travel around New Delhi, Anupshahr, Jaipur and Agra. I have seen and met plenty of people that I would like to help but sadly, the world does not work like that. I am not able to help everyone I meet, from the auto drivers to the men that work at the restaurant that I go to for lunch every weekend. However, when you smile at someone, though it may seem like a minute gesture it means a lot and it goes a long way. A smile is recognisable worldwide and even though the auto driver might not be interested in what you have to say, just smile. They may not smile back but what I have found is that they mostly smile back – it’s the simplest gesture of kindness without having to say anything at all.
Personally, it is too soon for me to point out how India has changed, or even to be honest if it has changed me at all. But I have learnt a wealth of knowledge at PPES and my heart has grown bigger.
Thank you PPES and thank you India.