Covid-19 Relief Project
The Covid-19 Food Relief Project project was implemented to respond to the food crisis in Assagao due to Covid-19. The Aware Citizens group Assagao and Live Happy had taken up the task of making sure that no family goes hungry in Assagao. On 1st April we decided to collect data from migrant labourers, the elderly and those in need of our help via a Google form. In the month of April we provided food to 760 people, more than just once , as well as sanitization kits to 9 families and one medicine kit. In the month of May we provided food to 285 people, more than once in Assagao as well we 4 people from Mapusa .Which brings the count to 289.Our wealth out of waste contest also enabled us to distribute sanitation kits to 83 families in Assagao , this kit included hand sanitizer, body soap,utensil bar, detergent, reusable mask ,razor, biscuits, chocolates, and Maggi packets. This helped us address the sanitation needs of the community which was otherwise ignored.
Wealth out of Waste contest
The 'Wealth out of Waste' project was an initiative of Live Happy NGO in collaboration with the Aware Citizens Group of Assagao. This initiative falls under the Awareness Program of the NGO's Live Empower Project. The purpose of this project was to spread awareness about waste management among children while bringing out the creative side in them.
This contest was a grand success. We had a total of 123 participant families and 189 individual participants. To us all our participants are winners. As we had limited special prizes, a lucky draw was held wherein out of the total number of participants 40 children had been selected. The 40 lucky draw winners received a pizza from Saraya, two maggi packets, a Fanta bottle sponsored by Feeding Goa and reusable cloth masks sponsored by Terra Conscious. The distribution of the prizes was held on 10th May and was done with the help of two lady constables from the Anjuna police station. An awareness drive was also conducted to emphasize the importance of social distancing. The distribution of gift hampers for our remaining participants was held on 12th May. It consisted of sanitization material like hand sanitizer, body soap, utensil bar, detergent, reusable mask, razor, biscuits, chocolates, and Maggi packets. We also had 11 entries from ASRO and 14 entries from the Don Bosco Orphanage. These children too received a sanitation hamper on the 23rd of May. All the entries are also being published on our social media pages to spread awareness about waste management and to also showcase the work of the children.
Diwali Camp 2020
The Live Happy Diwali Camp was held over 2 weeks at the Happy home. To ensure the safety of we tried our best to sanitize our hands regularly, maintain distance and wear masks for each session. The camp was attended by ten children.In week one each child got to pick their own diyas and paint them as they pleased. They were extremely happy to take home their newly painted Diyas and a few of them shared pictures of their lit diyas on Diwali Day. In week two we decided to plan activities in support of the Save our forests movement that is currently gaining momentum in Goa.The group was previously unaware of the save Mollem movement.They were made aware through videos and an open discussion about the forests.We watched videos of what is happening in Goa at the moment and learned about all the youth led movements across Goa aiming to raise awareness for the preservation of Goa. The children shared their own thoughts and opinions about what they felt about deforestation. Their messages were clear, wise and simple. “ The forest is home to animals, birds and reptiles,If we destroy their homes they will die” “ If trees are cut how will we breathe? `` '' A tree that has taken 100 years to grow cannot be replaced by a small sapling” To join this movement in our own way we learned moves from the jerusalem dance challenge to #danceforchange with the rest of Goa and raise awareness to save our forests. The group was divided into pairs and they were asked to create a forest on a chart paper using collage materials including dried leaves and twigs from outside.Beautiful collages were created with equally beautiful messages from the children.
Imagining my future community
Rhea Dsouza is a Goa based architect and artist is a volunteer at the Bookworm Library. Rhea in the past has also been a volunteer at Live Happy and we were happy to have her back in our new Happy home. She conducted a workshop over the span of two Fridays. The Theme of which was: " My community in the Future" : An exercise where the children plan and imagine their community.On day 1 the children explored paper by making a 2D collage using different techniques. They then moved to making 3D collages using paper.Rhea then guided them towards planning for " My community in the Future" Rhea and the children began talking about specific things in their community that they like, the problems they notice in their community (e.g. garbage, no street light, bad roads, etc.). They then wrote on a piece of paper what they like, dislike and hope to see in the future in their community. On Day 2 the students broke into groups, used their write ups from the previous session as a guideline to make their Models. Once the model was completed all the groups began telling their story of "My Community in the Future". This activity helped the children learn to problem solve, think flexibly, investigate, take creative risk, persevere, close observation (attention to detail), collaborate and coordinate.
Community Library Project
The Bookworm Library has been conducting Library sessions for our students since Januray 2019. And we have seen how much our children are benefiting from these sessions. Due to the pandemic almost every child has not been able to go back to school because of the pandemic. They thus don't have access to the same facilities they did at school. So many of them were already spending a lot of time on their gadgets and now with online classes they are doing so even more.Which is why we thought to initiate this project. The Library is open every Friday from 3.30 to 5.30 PM for the children of Assagao and the neighboring villages. This session is free and open for all.
Revival Festival was a joint initiative by Sensible Earth and CCP. The three-day festival began on November 6 at Garcia de Orta Garden, Panaji celebrated stories of sustainable coexistence and was also an opportunity to economically support local businesses, professionals, communities, artists, and musicians impacted by the lockdown. For this festival, Live Happy NGO also had a stall at the festival. At this stall, we not only promoted our sustainable business i.e. our Assagao heritage walk, and spread awareness about the work we do. But, we also promoted two other local artisans. One of the local craftsmen is Mr. Anthony from Dhuler , Mapusa, who makes Ghumots, the heritage instrument of Goa. The other local craftsman that we promoted was Mr. Vijaydatta Lotlikar, from Parra, who makes very intricate designs and crafts pieces out of coconut shells. Apart from selling ghumots and articles made from coconut shells, we also sold local organic honey. The founder of Live Happy, Mr. Felly Gomes along with Ketan, a ghumot teacher conducted an encapsulating workshop for the people attending the festival. They were accompanied by Ketan and his troupe on the ghumot as well Keegan D'souza on the guitar.
Assagao heritage festival
Live Happy, has always worked towards the protection, preservation, and restoration of Goa. And one way we do that is by creating awareness either through videos, community initiatives, or through our holistic learning classes. One such awareness activity that Live Happy put together for this cause was on the 13th of December, a mini one-day festival. For this festival we had artists come together to paint a mini tempo, this vehicle is used for the transportation of goods across North Goa, and it will act as a source of information wherever it goes and where ever it is parked. The theme of the art was the biodiversity of Goa. With such large scale destruction of natural habitat taking place in Goa, it is imperative for us to draw the attention of the public to it. We had 8 artists that dedicated more than 14 hours of their day to ensure that this masterpiece of a project was completed. The artists present were Shrayragi Israni, Divesh Gadekar, Dattaraj Naik, Leticia Alavares, Sanjita Shetye, Shivam Salgoakar, Lina Vincent, and Rajaram Naik. We also had Billy Fernandes who is a very popular cartoonist who goes by the name Billytoons, who visited and contributed to the painting. Aaron Fernandes, the snake expert also contributed to the painting. Our Green champions also got felicitated at the hands of the artists. We have four finalists and each of them received FC Goa merchandise, sponsored by FC Goa as this month's prize. The waste management team of Assagao has been doing tireless work they have been doing through rain, shine, and the pandemic. This is why we felicitated them in front of all our guests. And they also had lunch with us. The food for the day was prepared by Mrs. Conceicao Gomes, and she was helped by Sujata and Cecina . We also had some mouthwatering chocolate éclairs very kindly donated by a newly opened restaurant Alma , based in Vagator. We ended the day on a musical note with a live music session by various singers and musicians. A thank you to our volunteers Joe , Anushka and Meloisa for helping us to pull of this event.
Christmas party 2020
Following the Diwali Camp, we decided to resume weekly sessions for the children at Live happy in order to keep the festive spirit alive, and given that Christmas was coming closer The aim of the Christmas Camp was to continue engaging with the children creatively through the festive season. Since they spent many months indoors with limited social interaction, these sessions were intended to bring the community of children back together again using creative arts, music, and games. Visual art projects took center stage during these sessions and together we created Christmas-themed community art and decorations including a DIY Christmas tree for Happy home. Each week the 2hr sessions passed by quickly with the children fully engaged in creating from waste and other materials. With Carols playing in the background, they worked together in small groups to decorate Happy home for the season. The theme for each session was centered around creativity, joy, and togetherness. The Christmas camp concluded with a party for the children where Santa was present and gifts for each child were handed out sponsored by well-wishers.
The Green Champions project began in June 2020 wherein the registered children received a fruit bearing sapling which they had to grow. The children had to give us an update and research on various biodiversity topics that were given to them every month. They presented their work as write-ups and videos. They were rewarded every month for their progress and their work was assessed upon. There were four finalists: - Ms. Prity Sahani, Master Jerome Noronha, Master Hardik Redkar and Master Sudarshan Patra who were asked to learn and speak about ‘Kator’ and two other heritage places in Assagao of their choice. The internal markings of the finalists were judged by Mrs. Anjaline Jaquies on the basis of growth, condition and survival of the plant. The final round was held on 13th February 2021, at the Live Happy Centre- Assagao. The judges for the day were environmentalist and Live Happy NGO Vice-President Mr. Darryl D’Souza, Independent Journalist and History Enthusiast Mr. Andrew Pereira and Field Engineer and Live Happy volunteer Mr. Joseph D’Souza. The competition was very close and Master Hardik Redkar was declared as the winner of The Green Champions. He was awarded with a geared cycle that was refurbished by Mr. Ezekiel Fernandes owner of Brake Down. The cycle was sponsored by Mrs. Ilka Muller Patham, a culture anthropologist. Other participants were given gift hampers. All the four finalists also received an Educational Field Trip on ethical nature conservation - a Mangrove Estuary and Dolphin watching Experience sponsored by Terra Conscious.
Ocean Excursion with Dolphin Watching and Mangroves Exploration
On 28th February 2021 our Green Champion finalists and our tuitions kids were taken on a wonderful dolphin watching and mangrove exploration excursion offered by Mrs. Puja Mitra from Terra Conscious. Terra Conscious is an effort by Mrs. Puja Mitra and Mr. Roshan Gonsalves. It is a marine and coastal conservation based social enterprise. They work towards empowering the local community through responsible nature-based experiences, conservation travel itineraries and integrated environmental education programs conducted through community partnerships. Through their travel experiences, they support social impact work that focuses on creating awareness about conservation issues. Eight of our kids along with six adults were taken for the ride from the Sinquerim jetty. The kids were super enthusiastic and curious to learn new facts about nature; they also managed to spot dolphins and jelly fishes in the sea. Besides, the children learned the negative impacts of releasing waste and garbage into water bodies and the importance of protecting our mother earth. Thus, the idea and importance of sustainable living was instilled into them which they grasped quite well.
Educational tour by Drishti Lifesavers
We organized an educational field trip for our children on March 27, 2021, in partnership with Drishti Lifesavers. The field trip drew a total of 15 students. The journey from Happy Home to Vagator Beach started at 9:30 a.m. Mr. Joe sponsored the children's transportation on a small bus. He also sponsored fruits (watermelons, oranges and bananas) for the children, volunteers and the life guards. The day at the beach began with the introduction of the children and the life guards. Mr. Elias from Drishti explained to the children the importance of life guards and their role at the beach. He mentioned that it is necessary to greet the life guard before you enter the ocean to swim and that knowing to swim is essential. Mr. Amit from Drishti then explained the risks of not understanding how to swim and showed the basic strategies for entering and navigating in the sea with waves to the kids. With the help of a few volunteers, the team then brought the children into the sea to learn and practice the techniques. The kids were all ecstatic and the majority of them wanted to learn swimming. The children were taken in groups of five at a time. They were all very enthusiastic to get into the sea. A lifeguard gave each child individual attention and instruction. Following the kids, the adults were taken into the ocean for a short swim. The children then spent some time swimming, playing games on the shore and building sand castles in the sand. The day at Vagator Beach came to a close with everyone enjoying the watermelons and oranges that had kept us hydrated on such a humid summer day. Drishti also provided us with samosa and frooti. The children and volunteers thanked the Drishti team abundantly for their time and commitment in educating them about the ocean and marine life.