Spreading Smiles to Beautiful hearts!

Rotaract in all its forms, in all its facets, has always provided different opportunities and different rewards to those that choose to join the movement. Yet perhaps the side of it that caught my eye the most was the opportunity it provides in initiating change in the communities around us, those that live afar and those that are closest to us. It is the selfsame sentiment that existed in our minds making our way through the gates of Lady Ridgeway Hospital for Children.

The day in itself was nothing short of a delight, but all the preparation, planning and the formation of the idea itself was just as important. The idea was simple enough, but we were slowly starting to grow ever concerned about the foreboding time constraint before us. Regardless, perhaps stupidly so, we decided to take on the challenge.The fabulous PR and IT teams of RACSLIIT had posters up within minutes, calling for donations, and it did not take long for us to start getting responses and soon enough we had boxes of crayon, play dough, coloring books, pencils, soft toys and monetary donations flooding in. Suddenly, the time constraint that previously seemed to suffocate the organizing committee was not a matter at all, all thanks to the kind souls who sought to help us even at short notice.

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On the 15th of September, at around 4pm, we all made our way to ward 12 of Lady Ridgeway Hospital, bearing gifts, smiles and a guitar. At first the kids seemed a little reluctant and maybe even tad intimidated seeing our masked faces. Rotaractor Kusan took the lead to break the ice and immediately started playing the guitar whereas Rotaractor Omila broke into song. One by one each one of us joined in, then the parents and finally even most of the kids. It didn’t take long for the toothy smiles to appear, and one little boy in particular shuffled towards and watched intently as he played; mouth agape and eyes agog as if he were witnessing the most spectacular rendition of “Api Kawruda” being played for him. His eyes widened further as I placed a stuffed bear wrapped in bright paper in his hands, one which he could barely wrap his tiny arms around.

While the tiny audience was busy being entertained, some of us started distributing the presents we brought with us. That was perhaps the most enjoyable part of our evening, especially considering we spent more time goofing around with the kids rather than “acting professionally” as we previously intended. Perhaps the highlight of the day for me transpired in the form of a heated conversation I instigated with a baby girl who refused to let go of my pinkie. There was certainly a gap in communication between the two parties, with me resorting to speaking in a higher register and her resorting to grunts, coos and repeatedly stomping her fist upon the mattress. Utterly incoherent as she was, she made a compelling argument, and I couldn’t help but yield and allow her to hold on to my pinkie for the time being.

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Sadly, the gifts and the songs eventually ended. Our time at ward 12 was soon drawing to a close and as reluctant as we were, we had to bid our farewells. The day was darkening when we stepped outside the gates, but I couldn’t help but feel that our own days were still fairly bright. 

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සියළුම ආකාරවලින් සහ සෑම අංශයකින්ම ව්‍යාපාරයට සම්බන්ධ වීමට තෝරා ගන්නා අයට විවිධ අවස්ථා සහ විවිධ ප්‍රතිලාභ ලබා දෙන රොටරැක්ට් ව්‍යාපාරය තුල මගේ ඇසට හසු වූ පැත්ත නම්, අප අවට සිටින ප්‍රජාවන්, දුර බැහැර ජීවත් වන අය සහ අපේ සමීපතමයන් අතර වෙනසක් ඇති කිරීමට එය සපයන අවස්ථාවයි. රිජ්වේ ආර්යා ලමා රෝහලේ ගත කල සුලු කාලය අප සැමට ආත්ම තෘප්තිමත් කර ගැනීමට අවස්ථාවක් ලබා දුන් බව නිසැකය. සරල නමුත් ඉතා අභියෝගාත්මක අදහසකින් මුල පිරූ මේ කර්තව්‍යයට අපේම SLIIT රොටරැක්ට් සමාජයේ සහෝදර සාමාජිකයන්ගෙන් මෙන්ම උතුම් හදවත් ඇති බොහෝ දෙනාගෙන් ලැබුනු නොමසුරු හා කාර්‍යක්ෂම දායකත්වය නිසා , කාලය හමුවේ නොපැරදී අපගේ අභිප්‍රාය මල් ඵල ගන්වා ගැනීමට හැකිවිය.

සැප්තැම්බර් 15 වන දින සවස 4 ට පමණ අපි සියලු දෙනාම තෑගි, සිනහවන් හා ගිටාරයක් රැගෙන රිජ්වේ ආර්යා රෝහලේ 12 වන වාට්ටුවට ගියෙමු. මුලදී එහි සිටි දරුවන් අප සමග මිතුරු වීමට මඳක් පසුබට වූ බවක් පෙනෙන්නට තිබූ නමුත් , වැඩි වේලා නොගෙන ගිටාරයේ තත් නගන ස්වර නදට හා හිත් පිනන ගායනයට එහි සිටි සියල්ලන්ම වසගයට ගැනීමට හැකි විය.රොටරැක්ටර්වරුන් වන කුසාන් සහ ඔමිල ඔවුන්ගේ කුඩා ප්‍රේක්ෂක සාමාජිකයින් සමඟ විනෝද වීමට කාර්යබහුල වූ අතර, ඒ අතරතුර ගෙන ආ තෑගි බෙදා හැරීමට අපි කටයුතු කළෙමු. තමන්ට ලැබුනු තෑගි තුරුලු කරගෙන , මිල කල නොහැකි තරම් වටිනා හිනාවලින් මූනු සරසා ගෙන සිටි ඒ පුංචි දරුවන්ගේ අහිංසක ඇස් ඔවුන්ගේ වචනවලින් කියාගත නොහැකි බොහෝ දේ අපට පැවසූ සැටි නම් විඳ ගත යුතුම හැඟීමක්!

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කනගාටුවට කරුණක් නම්, තෑගි බෙදා දීම සහ ගීත ගායනා සිතුවාට වඩා වේගයෙන් අවසන් වීමයි. 12 වන වාට්ටුවේ අපට ගත කල හැකි කාලය ඉතා ඉක්මනින් ගෙවී ගිය නිසා අකමැත්තෙන් වුවද අපට අපේ පුංචි යහලුවන්ට සමුදෙන්නට විය. සැඳෑ අඳුර ලෝකයම වෙලා ගන්නා මොහොතක රෝහලේ ගේට්ටු වලින් පිටතට පැමිණි අප, ඔවුන්ට සාපේක්ශව ජීවත් වන්නේ ආලෝකයෙන් පිරි ලෝකයක බව අප සියල්ලන්ටම පසක් විය. කුඩාම අදහසකට කල හැකි විශාල වෙනසකට, අපි ඒ පුංචි සිත්වලට මොහොතකට හෝ ලබා දුන් සතුට හා බෙදාගත් සිනහවන් තවත් එක උදාහරනයක්ම පමණක් වනු නොඅනුමානය.

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லேடி ரிட்ஜ்வேயில் குழந்தைகளுடன் சிறிது நேரம் செலவழிக்க ஒரு நாளை ஒதுக்கி வைக்கும் யோசனையை Rtr. நிஷிகி முன்மொழிந்தார். RACSLIIT இன் PR மற்றும் IT குழுக்கள் சில நிமிடங்களில் சமூக வலைத்தளங்களின் ஊடாக நன்கொடைகளுக்கு அழைப்பு விடுத்தனர், அவ் அழைப்புக்கான பதில்களைப் பெற எங்களுக்கு அதிக நேரம் எடுக்கவில்லை. நண்பர்கள், குடும்பத்தினர் மற்றும் சக ரோட்டராக்டர்கள் அனைவரும் பதிலளித்தனர், விரைவில் எங்களிடம் வண்ணம் தீட்டும் கோல், வண்ணமயமான புத்தகங்கள், பென்சில்கள், மென்மையான பொம்மைகள் மற்றும் பண நன்கொடைகள் இருந்தன.

செப்டம்பர் 15 ஆம் தேதி, மாலை 4 மணியளவில், நாங்கள் அனைவரும் லேடி ரிட்ஜ்வே மருத்துவமனையின் 12 வது வார்டுக்கு பரிசு, புன்னகை மற்றும் ஒரு கிட்டார் ஆகியவற்றைக் கொண்டு சென்றோம். எங்கள் ரோட்டராக்டர்களான குசன் மற்றும் ஒமிலா ஆகியோர் தங்கள் சிறிய பார்வையாளர்களை கிட்டார் மற்றும் பாட்டின் மூலம் மகிழ்விப்பதில் மும்முரமாக இருந்தனர், நிஷிகி, வினூரி, காஞ்சனா மற்றும் நான் எங்களுடன் கொண்டு வந்த பரிசுகளை விநியோகித்தோம். அது எங்கள் மாலையின் மிகவும் சுவாரஸ்யமான விடயமாக இருந்தது.

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கவலையூட்டும் விதமாக, பரிசுகளும் பாடல்களும் இறுதியில் முடிந்தது. 12 வது வார்டில் எங்கள் நேரம் நெருங்கிக்கொண்டிருந்தது. நாங்கள் அங்கிருந்து பிரியாவிடை பெற்றோம். நாங்கள் வாயில்களுக்கு வெளியே நுழைந்தபோது நாள் இருட்டாக இருந்தது, ஆனால் எங்கள் சொந்த நாட்கள் இன்னும் பிரகாசமாக இருந்தன என்று உணர்கிறோம்.

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Experience shared by : Rtr. Randima Fernando  ( Assistant Secretary 2020/21)

Translated, Edited and Published by : RACSLIIT Editorial Team 2020/21

smile

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