Shilpa’s road to unlearning

Shilpa*, 13, lives in Mumbai with her elder brother and parents. Her father owns a tailoring business, while her mother is a teacher. When she joined the after-school programme at Oasis, Shilpa found it difficult to adjust to the rules and discipline that the tutors taught them. She often spoke back to them and exhibited behavioural problems that affected her performance in school and those around her.

In counselling, the tutors found that Shilpa was just replicating what she witnessed at home. Many children in communities like Kamathipura often adopt the words, actions and values that they see around them. Shilpa did not know what she was doing was wrong because for her that was a norm. With continuous counselling and life skills, the tutors helped her understand what good values and good manners are. The tutors are glad that they can see changes in her over the past few months. Shilpa has joined the change agents group where she attends meetings regularly. In these meetings they teach them life skills such as helping others, good behaviour, time management and how to have a positive impact in the life of others. Shilpa also influences her friends in school and children from the red-light area to join the after-school programme and also teaches them the life-skills that she learns at the hub.

*name changed

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