Daan Utsav celebration in MTA School – A day of learning, sharing and cultural extravaganza


By GV News Desk

1 November 2023

On the occasion of Daan Utsav, students from Mahendra Tanaya Ashram School in Koinpur, in the Gajapati district, joined hands with special guests Captain Pankaj Kodimela and Sophia Thomas, Senior Executive of CSR, representing IndiGo Airlines and its CSR arm, the IndiGoReach.

Daan Utsav brings together NGOs, schools, corporates, government organisations, and individuals to engage people through acts of giving. It creates a shared purpose, fostering a sense of togetherness and collective responsibility toward society’s well-being. Daan Utsav is all about spreading happiness and hope.

The event took place on 1 October 2023, when the guests joined the students during their visit to the school. Together, they contributed to the celebration by planting trees, fostering a spirit of environmental consciousness and community engagement.

Flight Captain Pankaj Kodimela led an engaging session with students in classes VII-X, sharing insights on the exciting journey of becoming a pilot.

In an interactive Q&A, the curious students fired away with their questions , soaking up valuable knowledge from Captain Kodimela.

The distinguished guests also explored the school’s Mini Science Lab, the Computer Lab, the Parthasarathi Memorial Library, and the Kalpanadham art studio.

During their visit, the guests had a heartwarming surprise for the students. They gifted the young learners with two cartons filled with stationery and drawing materials, fueling their creativity and learning.

In return, the students, with immense pride, presented the guests with a calendar with tribal art by students from the school and copies of “Lemtum,” a remarkable trilingual magazine in Odia, English, and Saura.

Incredibly rich in texture and nuance, Saura language has been preserved orally; consequently, it lacks its own script and – according to UNESCO – risks extinction.

During her fellowship with Gram Vikas in its Mahendra Tanaya Ashram School, Jahnvi Rathod, decided that she would center her project around the promotion and preservation of the Saura language.

Jahnvi assembled a team of students and staff to help contribute to the creation of a Saura magazine.

The magazine, called Lemtum (which means “Hello” in Saura), offers readers a chance to engage with Saura art, stories, poems, and people through each of its pages. It is presented in a trilingual format – Saura, Odia, and English – in order to reach an audience of cultural insiders and outsiders alike.

Given the absence of script, the Saura portions have been transcribed in Roman letters, following the traditional practice which can be seen in the few existing Saura texts, such as the Bible.

Following a round of evening snacks, our incredibly talented students took the stage to showcase their rich cultural heritage and talents in a heartwarming program dedicated to our honoured guests.

It was an evening filled with music, dance, and the vibrant colors of tradition, leaving everyone with smiles and memories to last a lifetime.

Captain Pankaj Kodimela accepting the gift from the children. The Lemtum magazine and a calendar with student's art in it.

Photograph by Deshbandhu Swain


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