Saturday, September 27, 2014

Playacting real concerns


Tadong Senior Secondary School teachers and students have been collaborating for a while to combat addiction among the young, and in the latest instance, successfully staged a play to generate awareness and funds against drug addiction and alcoholism. Clearly, the school’s commitment to eradicate this menace is not confined to speeches and slogans and is seeking out innovative and creative avenues to translate stand into action.
“Hajam ko Darpan ma Hamro Chaya - A Reflection of Self”, the play staged by the Tadong School at Sikkim Government College auditorium here from 16 to 20 September received a tremendous response from the people and played to packed shows on all days.
The two-hour long play has been written and directed by Jiwan Rai, a teacher at the school, and is enacted by students from the school itself who essayed all roles with skills which displayed no amateur jitters or awkwardness.
As for the play, it plays out at the “MC Hair Cutting Saloon” and features songs and elaborate dialogue-bazi. The songs, each carrying a social message, were performed by teachers Sukmit Tasho Rai and Deoraj Sharma and an ex-student, Prakash Sundas. All these three are professional singers and musicians or repute, and this reflected in the professional quality of the playback singing. The play also included dances by students.
“The play tries to explain that drug addiction and alcoholism are dangerous killers and seeks to encourage everyone to come forward to fight this menace and make Sikkim a drug-free society,” explains the writer and director of the play.
Mr. Rai adds that the play also addresses the problem of fraying social structure which is resulting in children falling prey to the drug mafia. He adds that the other motive of the play is to bring all stakeholders to the same platform and then build collaborations to combat this social problem.
Ticket sales went into the Charity Fund constituted at the school for students in need. This, Mr Rai informs, was the brainchild of the school Principal Doma L Zimba.
He informs that the treatment of an addict at a proper rehab costs around Rs 30,000. The school, he adds, has already sponsored the treatment of two students from the school fund. He stated that in a bid to deal with the issue long term, the school has constituted this Charity Fund for students vulnerable to addiction and some of whom have already become addicts.
It is informed that teachers and students have voluntarily contributed towards this fund and community support has also been invited. “This fund will be used to treat drug addicted students, to hire professional counselors regularly and to meet the expenses of medical emergencies resulting from addiction,” Mr Rai informs.

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