Children’s Literary Club (CLC), a Voluntary Organization, founded by Dr. R. Purnima in 1990, (Mysuru, Karnataka, India), has been contributing to the comprehensive development of children, especially the marginalized. CLC has been instilling hope for the future, in the young community brought together with no class or caste discrimination.
As the Director of Children’s Literary Club, my primary goal has been to educate children beyond curriculum, to initiate the young to new knowledge and for further exploration on their own. The programmes are designed to fulfil the twin obligations, dulcet et utile, delight and instruction. The target groups of these programmes are encouraged to pursue the best that has been taught and mastered, thus enabling children to cultivate fine culture.
Though basically set up to open the doors of the literary world, CLC has made available to children, the experiences of the non-literary world too like from music to visual arts, from travelogue to photography, from nature study to sculpture from health to healthy food, from translation to criticism, from biology to history. In addition to these, CLC has been conducting programmes to enhance the habit of reading, strengthen the English language skills and create awareness through theatre activities, besides Green Studies. So far thousands of programmes and a wide variety of workshops have been conducted. The Director has taken her programmes to Government/Government-aided Educational Institutions located in all the 30 Districts of Karnataka, on a voluntary basis.
I started planning/doing only because there was a pulsating desire in me to use Creative ways of teaching and bring about a difference to children, particularly, the Underprivileged/and at risk children. Equal opportunities are provided to children from socially/economically backward segments as well as from homes without a creative atmosphere. Since my aim is not to train competitors, even those lagging behind have made good progress. I have during these 27 years tried to create an atmosphere where learning is joy for the participants. Children are motivated to think, feel and articulate, thus shaping their sensibility and sharpening their sensitivity.
Conducting Training Workshops for Teachers, young adults, adult students/scholars is a part of Children’s Literary Club’s activities, for the Director firmly believes that all are Children before Knowledge. Later, a fairly detailed account of the programmes conducted by Children’s Literary Club is given.
I had a positive vision, and I realized that without action there was no happiness for me. Creative ways of teaching has a unique role to play in the richly diverse Indian Classrooms. It is both demanding and rewarding, for it makes Educational Institutions sites for community building and social transformation.
Dr. R. Purnima is a very valuable person not only to the academic world but to the whole society in the city of Mysore. She is a talented dancer and musician and her performance has been widely appreciated in the media. What I truly admire in her personality is her constant striving to influence her eniornment. She is running a ‘Children’s Literary Club’ for non formal and creative education for children. Her children in this club not only come from well-to-do homes, but from the streets as well. There is no organization of this kind of democratic mix and I feel strongly her effort deserves recognition and support of every kind.-Professor U.R. Anantha Murthy