This year, to commemorate the United Way Day of Action, United Way Mumbai, with the support of corporate and private contributors, organized the Let's READ Carnival. Let's READ is a United Way Mumbai initiative aiming to nurture a love for books and reading among children living in marginalised communities. Through this project, we set up mini libraries, gift book sets, train NGO teachers and conduct workshops for students.
The Let's READ Carnival, an all-day event, which happened on the 22nd of June, 2017, aimed to bring the world of books and reading under one roof. On 22nd, 1500 underprivileged children from 15 NGOs, working across the city of Mumbai were treated to a day filled with fun, learning and the magic and wonder of books. Through the day, the children, aged between 6-12 years, enjoyed a guided experience of book selection, book reading, storytelling, workshops and refreshments. Each child was also gifted his/her own set of books, to take home. Overall, 9000 books were distributed to the children during the Carnival.
300+ volunteers from various corporates as well as St. Stanislaus High School, the venue partner, braved the monsoon showers and arrived at the Carnival to lend a helping hand, by assisting the children in reading, getting to various storytelling sessions and in choosing books to take home
At the event, nine gifted professional storytellers brought stories to life, by engaging and entertaining children through 48 sessions of storytelling and art and craft activities. Student workshops were held to give children the opportunity to learn about various careers available in the world of books, from professionals in the industry. Teachers' workshops were also conducted to guide the teachers in making stories come alive, for their students.
Every effort was taken to ensure
that each child left the Carnival, having experienced the magic of books and
imagination, returning home a little bit more curious, more appreciative of the
wonder of books and a little more eager to read his/her very own book.
(Photographs: Arun Moras)