The GAVI global tea party at Chennai, India.

23 May

The GAVI tea party in India

The GAVI tea party in India

It was 17th May, 2 PM, Chennai.

The place was my residence.

My 90-year-old grandmother was there. The group whom I had invited for a tea party slowly started arriving one by one. Sunitha, Geetha, Suma, Hema, Shobana and Narasimhan were all experts in their chosen fields in society. I think even being a home maker needs special skills to excel.

There were hot spicy samosas, tomato-chilli sauce, green tea, masala chai on the table.

I spoke about how World Moms Blog happened in my life just as I was quitting my job. I spoke about Jennifer going on a maternity leave and sharing some editorial responsibilities with all of us. I spoke about the board of editors forming in World Moms Blog. I spoke about our common interest in society, World Moms Blog being represented in the UN foundation’s summit for social good, WMB’s eventual interest in Child Immunisation programmes, joining hands with GAVI for a cause.

And now we were evolving from being a blog, to being an international mascot. All of us, contributors and fans of WMB were advocating children’s immunisation programmes.

And then, we watched a couple of videos. In Sierra Leone, 20% to 25% of deaths were because of Pneumonia and Diarrhoae. In Nicaragua there were massive deaths due to pneumonia. My guests were moved. Some of them had tears in their eyes. Hema for one had.

I asked them how they felt.

My grandmother was the first to express her feelings and voiced her support for immunisations because she felt one generation’s interest and adhering to the schedule perfectly helped in eliminating the particular disease for the next generation. What a point! She said, she saw that happening with her own eyes in the four generations she had witnessed.

We talked about India being declared Polio free. We talked and talked and talked.

Everyone felt strongly. I was overwhelmed. I was expecting at least one of them to talk against vaccination and immunisation. I expected at least one of them to say they did not think this was for them, because they did not have the time. But I was wrong. They had passion within them. Their fire was unextinguishable.

At the end of the party, I asked them if they would go back and spread the message of GAVI. There was a chorus of yes and they all suggested ways and means for themselves to host such parties.

I knew my job had just begun. I remembered the day I volunteered to Jennifer Burden, the founder of World Moms Blog that I would host a party too.

And all our kids chorused, “We want a disease free world.” That one was cute!

Thank you World Moms Blog and GAVI Alliance.

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16 Responses to “The GAVI global tea party at Chennai, India.”

  1. Mamma_Simona May 23, 2012 at 12:54 pm #

    Wow, you gave me goosebumps! 🙂 Time for me to really roll up my sleeves and make it happen here too. Thank you SO much.

    • The Alchemist May 23, 2012 at 1:01 pm #

      Its actually fun Simona. I am waiting to hear all about your party. We are all here to help, whatever little it is.

  2. Karyn @ kloppenmum May 23, 2012 at 1:29 pm #

    I am so pleased it went well for you. What a great idea to have your grandmother share her experiences.

    • The Alchemist May 23, 2012 at 7:57 pm #

      Thanks Karyn. She was so inspiring and motivating. It went well. Would have been pleased, had the entire WMB team was here 🙂

  3. Mom Photographer (@MomPhotographer) May 23, 2012 at 3:31 pm #

    this picture speaks for itself. it’s beautiful.

    • The Alchemist May 23, 2012 at 7:58 pm #

      Coming from a photographer herself I take that as a great compliment 🙂 Thank you.

  4. skpadilla May 23, 2012 at 10:48 pm #

    Well done! You are doing beautiful and important work.

    • The Alchemist May 28, 2012 at 8:39 am #

      Thank you. I hope in some tiny way the world is benefitted.

      • padma June 26, 2012 at 9:59 pm #

        yes the world is benefitting a lot because of your kindness and joy.

        • Purnima July 26, 2012 at 10:01 am #

          Thank you for your kind words, Padma.

  5. Dan Thomas June 28, 2012 at 8:19 pm #

    Well done and thanks from all your friends at GAVI Alliance. You and your family and friends are literally changing the world one cup of tea at a time.
    Looking forward to seeing the video footage.
    Best wishes
    Dan Thomas

    • Purnima July 26, 2012 at 9:52 am #

      Thanks Dan. Hope you liked the video footage. We especially thank you for the opportunity to help the world, once small step at a time.

      -Purnima.

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