In 1989, the United Nations recommended that July 11 be observed as World Population Day, in order to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population matters. To this end, eight BCP India volunteers this year organized awareness sessions with 550 students from the Harsaru and Dhankot schools, to provide facts about the population of various countries, the effect of population on development, gender rights and problems caused by population explosion.
The sessions were activity based, and began with a quiz about population sizes, with small prizes awarded to the children who answered correctly. There then followed a thematic magic show and a poster-making activity, where the children were asked to draw and paint things that represented population day for them. Volunteers distributed charts, brushes and paint, and helped the children with their ideas. The children also took part in a variety of cultural activities at the end of the session.
One of the volunteers, Seep Taneja, commented: “I enjoyed coming here and spending time with the children. There is so much creativity, and they actually look forward to these fun, interactive sessions, which are so different from their routine classroom sessions.”