Hi, I am Mehul. I am from a small village in Nagpur. And this is the story behind my smile.
My parents aren’t wealthy. But they do all they can to ensure that I go to school. Every day.
Sadly, they themselves never could. They say in their time, their villages didn’t have a school. Thank God, my time is not the same.
I want to study, grow up, and end my parents’ pain. The day my Aai, Baba wouldn’t have to carry the unbearable weight of heavy objects in the construction sites anymore will be the best day of my life. I cannot wait to see them happy and healthy and at peace.
But these days as I sit down to study in school, the back of my neck hurts badly. Sometimes, I find it painful to straighten my back after being hunched over the books for a long time. My friends say the same.
Maybe because our school has no desks or chairs. We sit on the floor and study for hours.
It’s painful but I have to keep studying like this no matter what.
We all are doing it for our parents, to make them happy in the future.
But kindness prevails!
This morning our headmaster said that a kind man was going to end our pain. I asked him who he was, why he was doing it for us; to which he repeated, “a kind man.”
He is going to get us convertible school bags that can turn into desks.
Wow, it sounds like magic, doesn’t it?
That day isn’t far when my friends and I will study without pain, when all our dreams will be fulfilled. I can already see a ray of hope.
Thank you, kind man! You’re my hero.
About Himanshu Muneshwar Deore
Himanshu Muneshwar Deore studied product design in Bengaluru’s NICC International College of Design. Soon after that, he started working with an NGO.
Image title translation – 24-year-old Nagpur man creates bag-cum-desk from grass
During his final year, Himanshu traveled to Naina in Uttar Pradesh and came across a local craft of making baskets. The artisans would use moonj grass to deftly come up with different designs for these baskets.
It left him in awe. Himanshu wondered if he could leverage this craft to help the kids from his hometown. How they would study for hours in schools had looked utterly painful to him.
Back in his city, Himanshu closely watched a class-5 student while he sat on the floor to study. He then took the design requirements for a desk.
The young man went back to UP to learn the artisans’ skills and develop the prototype of the convertible school bag. Each bag had 2 straps and used cloth, bamboo, and metal stands to turn into a desk in no time. It could carry about 3 kilos of weight and came in colorful designs.
These bags not only helped the marginalized kids with posture issues but also gave livelihood to the artisans of UP.
Himanshu’s kindness and determination helped fulfill the dreams and change the lives of countless people in need.
Kudos to you! You’re the STORY behind thousands of smiles.
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