Volontariat helps people in many ways
but its main concern is looking after children: health, nutrition, schooling.
than 1200 children are helped by Volontariat. The
ambition of Volontariat is to take care of these children
from the moment they arrive in the nursery or
kindergarten until they learn a trade. That is why it
demands energy and time and needs continuous financing,
Volontariat created the sponsoring
system in order to be able to assure this
The programme of Sponsorship of children by friends from Belgium and France aims at assisting children from economically weaker sections to pursue school education. This programme now reaches around 800 children.
The decision to accept a child for sponsorship is taken after due inquiries carried out by a qualified social worker based on the economic and social situation of the family.
Letters are exchanged between sponsors and foster children. The sponsored children receive educational help in the form of notebooks and uniforms, one meal a day, a glass of milk every evening before starting their evening school and medical help. In some cases, Volontariat also identifies children who are orphans or from single parent families and arranges to place them in boarding schools outside Pondicherry . Volontariat also provides bicycles to sponsored students, who live far away form their school.
In order to give opportunities to children to develop talents in extra curricular activities, some classes have been started. Classes in yoga, classical dance (bharata natiyam), sculpture, drawing & painting, handicraft, karate, vocal and musical classes like flute, guitar, keyboard, tabla and band have been started with specialized teachers.
Volontariat also organises holiday camps and other programmes for children. Groups of 40 to 50 children gather every summer for a week of camping . Their activities include drama, art, debating and music. There is a provision for them to learn manual skills. The children enjoy the experience immensely.
One of the major activities is the mid-day meal for all the sponsored children. The meal is prepared by a group of women from Oupalam, who have been trained. Special care is taken to provide a balanced diet with attention to cultural preferences. There is a variety in the meals : each day one extra dish of fish, meat, eggs, fruits or ragi is included. Tofu which is made from Soya and the algae Spirulina rich in nutrition are given regularly. Salad is served every day.
When a person decides to sponsor a child, he must commit himself for a long period. The amount of money asked is quite modest, it starts at 15 US$ (Rs 600 / 14 euros) per month which you can pay every month, every three months or every year according to your choice.
But this one-to-one relationship can have some negative effects if the sponsor is too generous toward his sponsored child.
Indeed, the sponsor should consider that he (or she) "adopts" not only one child
but all the children of Volontariat.