Elm Grove Primary is the second Brighton school to join the BMA Schools’ Project and, as a part of the programme, a mural is exchanged between the children of the Chingari Rehabilitation Centre and those from the participating UK school. This time, we were lucky enough to have a colleague visiting from Bhopal, BMA ‘information officer’ Tabish Ali, which created the opportunity for him to personally deliver the Chingari kids’ mural to Elm Grove School.
The children and teachers alike were captivated by Tabish, who detailed some of the effects of the disaster on people living in Bhopal back at that time. He went on to explain how thousands of people are still badly affected today and that the effort of our supporters’ raises vital funds to support the clinics providing their healthcare. But, what really drew the crowd in was hearing stories of the Chingari kids since many of the children at the rehabilitation centre are of a similar age to those with whom Tabish was talking at Elm Grove.
Though hearing the stories can be hard at times you could tell the children were very happy to have been raising money for such a worthy cause. One child went on to tell a story of a family member who had been born with severe physical difficulties which seemed to bring home to the audience that it’s not only children in India facing these issues.
When the time came to exchange the murals, the excitement was palpable. Elm Grove’s fabulous mural was inspired by artist Stephen Wiltshire who is famous for being able to draw entire cityscapes from memory alone. To re-create his style the children were taken to the i360 in Brighton and, later, challenged to draw what they could remember. The mural delivered by Tabish, from Chingari, features a beautiful design of flowers and hand prints, around the edge of which are the finger prints of the children from the clinic.
Each year our schools project culminates with students and parents participating in the Color Run where they to take part in a 5km fun run full of music, powder paint and foam stations along the way whilst raising money for The Bhopal Medical Appeal! You can read more about that here.