Falgooni Mehta, Lawyer, Mumbai
At the outset I must say that I am stating my thoughts and feelings – very personal ones after having visited Basera- E- Tabassum (Abode of Smiles) situated in Kupwara district Kashmir .
Couple of years ago when I was told by doctors that I may not survive a life threatening illness, after having survived it, I took a serious look at my life and dreams again and this time I was not taking a chance on giving up on either of them.
My dream was to work with Children in conflict areas. Though I never thought of Kasmir at that time, I was thinking in terms of Afghanistan and Pakistan.
I saw a glimpse of my dream come to reality when I visited Kashmir in 2008, after a long hiatus. I met number of children who had lost one parent or both- but more than that some of them seemed to have lost their childhood.
When my friend Nitin told me about BWF, I knew I was going to be a part of it someday. I took a long time (a year) to deliberate over it as I did not want it to be a passing fancy or a flirtation with the idea of “helping someone” for my own gratification. I introspected why I wanted to be a part of it and the reasons would have to be totally unselfish and a life long commitment.
So when we decided to go to Kashmir in October 2009, I decided to go and visit BET. Nitin happened to be there, so it seemed easy. But not so as my fellow travelers (two women) took a lot of convincing to come along. But the trip opened up a whole new world for all three of us.
Two days were like a dream, passed off so quickly. What really moved me was the dignity and hope with which the Children live. I am sure a lot of people have written may testimonials about BWF and BET homes. However I am totally at loss of words here. So without saying much, I would like to reiterate my commitment to the children- the one’s I have met and the one’s who I am yet to meet.
“I will be there with you guys always, as a part of your life”.