Mid-summer, South Asian Workers Center made the best of the weather and planned our next get- together outdoors. The July Chai Adda saw a picnic in Danehy park. Around 25 people attended from the Rindge Towers and from Somerville. With American Independence Day just gone by, we discussed the history entailing the holiday. Autonomy and self-empowerment were the theme of discussion at the meeting. Being in Boston area, “where it all started”, the children attending the picnic were told stories of American Independence. They were also educated about the independence struggle in South Asia 70 years ago. The interaction excited them where they came up with very insightful questions that dealt with topics such as national sovereignty. The subject was explained in light of the American, Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan independence
movement. A Nepali origin child was curious about his country’s “independence” which gave us an opportunity to discuss Nepal’s political ethos of being a monarchy until recently. This led to opening the discussion on the difference between various forms of governance.
Sitting in Danehy Park, which was once a landfill, we also discussed the pressing topic of pollution and waste management impacting our daily lives. The children were asked for ideas on how to contain this gigantic problem facing mankind in general. They came up with insightful suggestions such as reducing the use of plastic, not wasting paper, and even suggest making compost from kitchen waste in their simple ways.
After an intense discussion, the children engaged in playing cricket and wanted to build their own South Asian cricket team. It was a community building event where people sang songs from the region and shared their distinct cuisine that led to the idea about undertaking cooking projects and monetizing their culinary skills.
SAWC was truly honored to be a part of a fun yet insightful get-together engaging member and their
families from the community.