"We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today ..."

Monday, November 11, 2013

Children's Day


Children's day celebrations form an annual, integral part of the life of Don Bosco Sneha Bhavan Project.  The event is held on the second Saturday of November at Sneha Bhavan.. This year it was on Nov.9. The registration began at 8.30 a.m. The Deputy mayor of Cochin Mrs. Bhadra inaugurated the celebrations.  10- year- old "Chacha Nehru" of Sneha Bhavan delivered a message!
The 600 plus poor children  from our neighbourhood had a great time.Twenty five skill and  chance games were offered and the winners given flashy prizes.
Drawing and painting competitions were organized by CHILDLINE.
Refreshments were served at intervals. 1000 biryani packets sponsored by Casino hotel were distributed. The hotel staff  themselves set the tables and served the food with the help of other volunteers. 
Bottled mango juice was provided by Elanjickal enterprises. Elite Foods treated the children to their fruit bread.
The after-lunch cultural show  was indeed  very spectacular! Children danced and sang to their hearts' content! The atmosphere was filled with their joyous laughter and enthusiastic clapping of hands!  
 As they departed they were given a bag full of gifts.It was a delight to see them opening their bags with great curiosity and seeing their eyes being lit up as they examined the contents.

Several VIPs both from the city council and Naval base honoured us with their presence.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


Will I try for another experience – the type I had on Oct. 19? I think I will. It all began with a loving invitation by a young lady who was working with us for three months, three years ago! It was her engagement. She wanted at least 50 children to share her joy. We settled for 9 since the children had to go to school! The girl wanted me to be present too and I volunteered to take the children aged 5yrs and 6yrs with me. Little did I know what exactly was venturing into!

Once we reached the lobby of the hall I gently and smilingly pleaded with the children  to be seated on the sofas. My pleas seemed to fall on deaf years!  Soon they started to jump on the springy- sofa joyfully and had lots of fun while I looked around to see if there were  any disapproving frowns from people around. Now tired of the sofa-experience they started to run around climbing the stairs and having a great time. All the time I sat grinning at the guests who by now had started arriving.

Being fagged out by now they spotted the welcome drink being served. They started rushing towards the drink. They were obviously very thirsty!  I had a tough time telling them to be orderly. Then they wanted to taste all the different types of drink that were offered!

By now hundred long minutes had moved on and I was hoping that the young lady and her would-be-husband would arrive to offer me a respite! Finally they arrived and were led to the reception hall.

Now it was lunch time. My nine buddies had to be lined up for the buffet lunch. They picked up what they wanted. Now we had no chairs to be seated and the hunt for vacant chairs began. Thank God I was in my clerical attire and people were kind! Meanwhile I had left the whole business of controlling them to one or two good souls who had come to my rescue. Soon they too lost control of the situation as they  got lost in the crowd!

Thankfully, lunch was getting over when the sensitive nostrils of my buddies picked up the smell of chocolate, pop corn, ice-cream and cotton candy! The rest is to be imagined!

My final job was to line up these nine lively ‘brats’ to catch a bus! Waiting at the bus shelter was another challenging experience. Once in the bus they all started darting for seats which were all occupied. Nothing seemed to deter them from giving up their hunt! They did squeeze themselves here and there! My next job was to round them up and place them together!

Reaching home was the happiest and most relaxing experience of my life in recent days! No sheep was lost and I thanked the Lord for trying my patience and getting the children to safety!

I am hoping to have another experience soon so that I can exercise my skill in children-management and get an award too ! I have become younger now by ten years!

Friday, October 4, 2013


When Babu Savio defends his PhD thesis in Mangalore  on  28, September he will be one of the rarest of rare cases of children who rose from illiteracy to an enviable status of becoming a Doctor in Education. Besides having three post graduate degrees Babu will be adding one more to his kit of higher education.

 Babu’s story is different from  that of all other kids who have excelled in studies. Babu came to Sneha Bhavan, Palluruthy  when he was about 10 years old as an orphaned  and illiterate child labourer in 1991.  When the authorities realized that Babu was a boy with an indomitable will and  possessing great potentialities  they put him in Std VII after a bridge course .
Babu completed his SSLC in 1997. It was his strong thirst for knowledge and friendly nudge from the staff of Don Bosco Sneha Bhavan that made him accomplish seemingly what was impossible for a boy with his awry background.  He passed Pre -Degree in 1999 (M.G University), B.Com in 2002 (M.G University ), M.com in 2004(M.G University – the Cochin College, Cochin), B.Ed in 2006 (M.G University – Porukkara College of Teacher Education), M.Ed in 2007 (Mangalore University, St.Ann’s College of Teacher Education), M.B.A in 2010(Madras university under Distance Mode), and now  Ph.D in Commerce Education from Mangalore University.

Babu Savio’s achievements should serve as a great example to all the children in our orphanages and homes for deprived children. With sensitive care givers and a conducive atmosphere every child can be motivated to achieve the apparently impossible!

Thursday, August 22, 2013


“I owe everything to Don Bosco. It is the system of Don Bosco that has made me who I am today. I know my past and I know my present. I will live by the lessons I have imbibed. I owe a lot to the many Salesians and others who have contributed so much to my growth. If it were not for them I would have been lost in a world that didn’t care if one lived or died!”  Babu Savio was speaking at the grand reception that was accorded to him at Sneha Bhavan, Pallurtuhy after his wedding at St. Thomas Moore Church on August 18, 2013. The Bishop of Cochin Most Rev. Dr. Joseph Kariyil had fourteen Priests including the five from Don Bosco Sneha Bhavan Project assisting him as he pronounced Babu Savio and Sheron Ann Jose husband and wife!

The function had a touch of royalty with the presence of central and state Ministers, Members of Legislative Assembly, the Mayor, the Deputy Mayor and the chair persons of different committees of the Cochin Corporation. Present also were numerous past pupils, well-wishers, the Director and staff of the Naval Institute of Aeronautical Technology, Cochin, friends and well-wishers numbering over 600.
The lunch was sponsored by the Mayor Tony Chammany who also helped to meet a major portion of the expenses.

Babu Savio M.Com, M.Ed, MBA , PhD  and Sheron Ann Jose M.Com, NET have now assumed the task of sharing the spirit of Don Bosco and lighting up the lives of those whom they meet especially of the disadvantaged in society. Babu knows that he was once as helpless as most of our children deprived of parental love and care!

Thursday, August 8, 2013


The Wedding of the Year!

One of our boys who grew up here is getting married on Aug. 18 at St. Thomas Moore Church, Palluruthy at 11.00 a.m. The Bishop of Cochin will bless the marriage.

The reception will be at Sneha Bhavan at 1.00 p.m.

Babu Savio started his schooling only when he was about 13 yrs old! When he came to Sneha Bhavan Babu he was an illiterate. Soon he was found to be a  smart boy who had the brains to study. After a few months of coaching Babu found himself in Std. VII!

Now he has completed his M.Com, MBA, M.Ed and PhD! Isn't this an achievement for a total orphan?

Please do join us in celebrating this event and thanking God for His love and care !
Kindly find attached the invitation.

Saturday, July 20, 2013


We were all there wishing Vinayaka all happiness as this 11 year- old boy was taken to the railway station to catch a train that would take him home to be reunited with his family whom he missed for the past 10 months. It was July 18, 2013 and the time 3.15 p.m.  It will take more than 24 hours for him to reach home! He is not alone and is being accompanied by one of our staff.

Vinayaka was brought to us by the police in September 2012. He looked miserable in his soiled clothes and unkempt hair. The boy was picked up from the railway station as he was found wandering around. He was handed over to us for temporary custody till his parents were traced out.

Communication was almost impossible with the boy hailing from the neighbouring state of Karnataka and spoke only Kannada.  However, this hurdle was overcome with the passage of time. It did not take much time for him to be part of our family. He was happy and learned to communicate in the local language. The family atmosphere that prevails at Sneha Bhavan made things easier for him. Everyone loved him for his simple and helpful ways.

It took us this long to locate his family. A line of communication was soon established between him and his parents. Vinayaka was visibly happy when he was told that he was going home soon!

Compelled by family situations, Vinayaka was taken by his father to work in a garage much against his wishes. Soon the boy ran away to escape from the harsh realities of child-labour.

 We only hope and pray that Vinayaka gets a chance to complete his studies as he is an intelligent boy and will be an asset to his family and his society! We are privileged to have helped him to get a new lease of life as a happy child!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Gauthaman Oduvil Prasad was with the Don Bosco Sneha Bhavan Project for six years and he left to be with his mother whose only consolation was her son! That was three years ago.
 Ever since he left he was being helped to do his studies .Today thanks to the offer of MAD ( Make A Difference ) group Gauthman is going to the US for a year of studies on American Govt. Scholarship. He is one of the 37 students selected from India  to be part of the US government’s Community College Initiative.  He will be attending an automotive course at the College of DuPage in Illinois.
“I am so thrilled to be selected to study in the US. This is a special opportunity and I am grateful to both Don Bosco Sneha Bhavan and  MAD. I thank God  for His goodness!”

We rejoice with Gauthaman as he leaves for the US on 11th July. He sure is a good student and is destined to do well in life!