Our Children: A wonderful partner in India

May 17, 2013  |  Featured News

For almost ten years Magicians Without Borders has worked with the marvelous Indian organization Our Children (www.ourchildrenindia.org) . For 43 years Our Children has worked with 30 institutions, primarily orphanages and homes for neglected, mentally  handicapped or abandoned children. Some of the many services they provide to these thousands of children are a birthday celebration for every child, scholarships, tutoring, camps, outings, days at the beach, and two fantastic events each year. They host a dance festival competition on May 1st, and a science fair in October.

For the dance festival the institutions are presented with a theme, such as weather, North East tribal India or animals. This year’s theme was the human emotions. Inspired by the theme, each institution choreographs a dance, chooses music and creates costumes and props. They then perform their dance in one of the most historic 2,000 seat theaters in Mumbai. The dancers are judged and prizes are awarded by a panel of professional judges.

These dance festival competitions are awesome and inspiring. This years festival was particularly moving. In light of the recent Indian cases of gang rape and sexual violence that have gained worldwide media attention, many of the dances dealt with the fear and anger that young women feel in response to this dangerous culture of sexual violence. These dances had a “terrible beauty,” that was powerful and provocative. I am sure the dances contributed to the profound conversation that is going on in India at the moment regarding the dignity and place of women in Indian society.

Over these 43 years Our Children has developed deep connections with all of these institutions. When Magicians Without Borders is planning a trip to India, we simply need to call Our Children, tell them when we’re going to be there, what days we want to perform, and within a week two or three performances are scheduled for each day. Often they also provide transportation to and from the shows. We are grateful for the wonderful work Our Children has done all these years, and the marvelous and sustaining support they have given to our work in India. Thank you Our Children!

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