It was not just salsa and hiphop, but also Vijay songs for the little dance troupe from the Guild of Service during the event called ‘Corporate Commitment’ organised by the Shakti Foundation here on Saturday. Being differently abled didn’t stop them from coming forward and entertaining hundreds of students and teachers, who had gathered at the St George’s Grounds for the event.
The students, some of them who found it difficult to stand upright, had been practising hard for the dance performance, every day after their school hours.
“Some of them are extremely naughty and will not practise when you ask them to. But every time they see a dance step on TV, they will pester me to teach them the same,” said their dance teacher.
The event was a meeting point for corporate employees, students from ordinary schools and differently abled schools, saw 15 special schools and nine normal schools participate. A march past by over 1,000 students from across different schools set the tune for the day.
After the inaugural function, the day was open for fun with percussionist Sivamani rendering his rousing performance, students, young and old, including special children, clapping and thumping to his beats.
A line-up of cultural events followed and students from several special schools staged a variety of cultural performances, including dance and music.
“When I first saw them perform with such enthusiasm and happiness, I felt so happy. We are now looking forward to invite them at our school for a similar cultural event and interaction,” said Janani Kandallu of Chinmaya Vidyalaya.
Through the course of the event several students came up with more ideas on newer programmes of their own. “We could have a skype interaction everyday. We might not be able to go to the each other’s schools every day. But a skype interaction would be great way of getting to know each other,” said Y S Aneesh of Maharishi Vidya Mandir. Corporates too were not far behind.
Mahathi Parashuram of Grundfos Pumps India said that there were multiple ways in which corporates can get involved to create more inclusion. “One is through employing the differently abled and making sure that all the necessary infrastructure for their use is available. Creating awareness among other employees and then through your own products, you can make a lot of difference,” she said.