Two week-long summer camps were held at Houston Namadwaar during the first two weeks of June.
The Sampradaya Camp, held from June 4-8 2018, was for children aged 5 to 9 yrs. Children took part in several Indian-tradition-themed activities based on Indian values. They learned the fun “Sadhus Sadhus” song that lists the names of several saints who have lived in India down the ages; listened to stories from the lives of some of those saints who exhibited lofty values in the face of dire circumstances; did India-themed art and craft work; enjoyed gardening, cooking, yoga, playing Indian traditional games, and more. Children also performed Nama japa daily as an exercise in prayer and meditation.
A highlight of the camp was the field trip. Children visited the Visions of India museum at the Pearland Alliance for Arts and Culture, that houses several Indian artifacts. Following this visit, they went to a nearby park where they played cricket and in the splashpad. On the final day of the camp, there was an end-of-camp showcases where children took turns to present all that they had learned during the camp.
The Traditional Treasures Camp, held from June 11-15 2018, was for older children, aged 10-14 years. This was a unique camp where participants were introduced to various contributions of ancient India to life and society, in a creative way. Special sessions were held on ‘Science & Technology in Ancient India’, ‘Ayurveda’, ‘Past Life & Rebirth’, ‘Compassionate Communication’ and ‘Mindfulness’. Children also had fun participating in activities related to each of these – Nama Yoga, Ad-Zap, Ayurvedic herb gardening, Silent Walk & Meditation, Warli Art, Sewing, Culinary Arts, Charades and other games. The field trip in this camp was to the Museum of Fine Arts where a special exhibit “Peacock of the Desert – Royal Arts of Jodhpur” was on display.
During the End-of-camp showcase, Ms. Bren Hardt and Dr. Susan Wildin, counselors who conducted the Compassionate Communication workshop earlier, explained the session to the parents as children demonstrated their learnings. This was followed by each team sharing their learnings from each of the special sessions, with the parents.
Both parents and children of both camps were very appreciative of the camps and GOD volunteers. It was a fun two weeks for all.