A Visit to Uluru Children’s Home – January 2018
By Annemaree Rowley
‘Children see magic because they look for it’! (Christopher Moore)
I knew at the age of 11, that one day I would be involved with children in India. Whether it is the universal intelligence laying a path before me or a deep desire on my part emerging from an inner, unconscious ‘well’ of wishes and intentions, I don’t know. However, I do know how much delight children bring to my spirit. What I love about them is their unbridled joy and their seeking of magic in every aspect of their lives.
I was invited to teach yoga to 30+ little ones in the newly established ‘Uluru Early Learning Centre’. Yes, whilst in Australia ‘Uluru’ is the name of our most prominent cultural landmark, it is also a Tamil word, meaning ‘Land Deep Within’. And that is where you will find The East West Overseas Aid Foundation (TEWOAF), deep in the heart of the state of Tamil Nadu.
It wasn’t difficult to teach these little ‘vege mites’, as all children can pretend to be a cat, lion, frog or tortoise.
I don’t speak a word of Tamil and so our lovely friend, Naga, translated and at the same time became fascinated at how the kids could transform their limbs into pretzel-like shapes and jump two feet off the ground whilst he could barely reach his knees, let alone his toes.
And in this warm, rural community how gorgeous it is to have a child tip-toe up to you, take your face in their little hands, kiss you on the forehead and say ‘please come back’! How could I not?
Here are some of the gorgeous little Yogis.
What an extraordinary feat to create this little haven in such a remote part of the country. A children’s home for the orphaned, abandoned and destitute; an early learning centre; an environmental education centre; a health care clinic; and much, much more together with a global community of donors. To give one child an opportunity to grow and to break the shackles of grim poverty and abuse, is surely an achievement that we can all manage. In our free society, isn’t eradicating poverty our duty? And isn’t education the most powerful tool to do this?
And what do my visits to this foundation remind me to do?
Observe everything with a child-like mind
Be polite at all times
Respect my elders
Giggle (a lot)
Look for the magic in everything…