Monday, 13 January 2020


Sharing the Joy and Success.

No one has ever known life as being a smooth ride throughout. All of us at some point stumble across roadblocks, experience bumpy rides, drive into dead ends and lose our way while going through this journey called ‘LIFE’. What makes life easier and manageable when we stumble upon such crucial challenges in life is knowing that there is a hand out there which is ready to hold ours and walk us through our difficult times, that there are open and welcoming arms out there which will with its warm embrace make our troubles feel lighter and help us get back on our feet. ‘OPEN YOUR ARMS-OYA’ is an organization that lives up to its name and is not just a thought, but an actual lifeline that has been and continues to be that ray of hope at the end of a dark tunnel for several individuals since past 9 years.  
In its glorious 10th year, OYA fondly looks back at its journey so far where it has touched so many souls (through its Counselling, Remedial services and other programs) who in turn have touched the lives of the dedicated professionals of OYA. At this point, OYA feels like a proud parent when it sees its beneficiaries successfully surmounting the challenges and the pain life threw at them and standing strong through all the storms, seeing themselves through, only to come out stronger and more beautiful than ever. OYA is thrilled to share with all of you the success stories of its beneficiaries who dared to ... ‘BELIEVE IT AND ACHIEVE IT’ while they were face to face with life’s adversities. This core belief of OYA that if you can believe it, you can achieve it has been the driving force behind many a beaming hearts it was fortunate enough to touch. Be ready to be inspired every month while we share with you the magnificent journeys of our beneficiaries so far whom we would lovingly and proudly like to call OYA’s ‘BELIE-CHIEVERS’!

- Behroz Dumasia 
Special Educator & Mentor 
Open Your Arms Foundation 

Thursday, 7 April 2016

Conquering Hearts Through Love

A gentle smile, a listening ear and supporting words can do wonders. It works with everyone, even strangers. They were strangers to me and me to them. Months passed, and now they wait for me, though a handful of them, but yes, they do. It feels accepted when they ask when I am coming next. It gives a sense of achievement when they say “ Didi, aap se baat karke dil halka ho jaata hai.”
 “Aap jaisa humko samajhte ho doosre nahi samajhte, hum aapse sab kuchh share kar sakte hain.”
That’s the power of unconditional love and acceptance. A practice, though tough, eventually shows remarkable changes in people’s perception and behavior. The ideal of therapy is not just to help a person grow, but to maximize their potential, while providing them the necessary conditions for growth.
As a therapist and as a guide, I’ve come to the frightening conclusion that I can either be a tool of inspiration and growth, or a model of self pity and doubt. I can either, hurt or heal, facilitate the resolution of crisis or create one. I can either leave a person humanized or dehumanized. So spread love and learn to accept a person as they are, in their truest form. Trust them, respect them, support and guide them, and verily they will trust you and respect you back.

{Sharing my experience working with one of OYA's project - Project street children.}
- Shazia Khan
Counselling Psychologist

Friday, 25 March 2016

Play - Explore the Outside World

There exists a world outside classroom !

Yes, unfortunately in the modern world of game consoles and interactive toys, in pretext of learning with technology it’s easy to overlook the importance of outdoor play that has lot to offer.

A real big world does exist outside the classroom, and the possibilities are really endless.

With the current trend of rising health issues in children, it has never been more important to teach young children the value of being active outside the classrooms.

Outdoor plays not only teach children practical life skills, it offers tremendous amount of fun added with numerous health benefits.

Research studies have consistently shown that playing in an outdoor environment reduces stress while promoting psycho-socio-emotional skills, and even increasing attention spans. It's proved that outdoor play significantly reduces the symptoms of ADHD, a condition that now affects most of the school children.

Outdoor activities that a child can undertake is limited only by it's imagination. One of the best activities for promoting an interactive mind would be the nature journal.

Help your child explore a safe outdoor area to see the dynamic change in their development, as playing outdoors promotes self-confidence, fine motor skills, and balance. It also promotes self-reliance, increases flexibility, and improves overall coordination which is essential in healthy development of children.

Roopa Mohan
Executive Catalyst & Senior Counselor
OYA Foundation

Sunday, 22 November 2015

A Child's Purview

To All the Parents,

I feel that nobody should abuse children, in any form, because abusing leads to reducing one's self esteem and confidence. 

Everyone needs love and respect, so do children. This is how they learn to treat others too with pure love and respect.

I feel parents should listen to their children and preference their say before a third party's perspective. A child's part of the story should be heard first rather than cross - references. If the child is wrong, words are a powerful weapon as compared to physical force in guiding the child to the right path. 

It's simple to mould a child with positive approach unlike forceful sculpting with sharp tools. 

- From a Child's Soul. 

(Sharing the views penned down by one of our beneficiary during our therapeutic sessions)

Friday, 30 October 2015

A Special Sharing by a Special Person.. - "Spreading Smiles"

OYA celebrated its 5th Birthday on 19th Oct 2015 and launched a new Initiative - "Spreading Smiles" 

Sharing a feedback from one of the event under this initiative - Direct Dil Se - written by one of our Mentor and Supporter Mr.Sailesh Mishra after he conducted a wonderful session with one of our partner shelter home girls. 

Dear Raheen JJ it was wonderful memorable experience with Rescue Home girls. Could not believe government run home could be so neat, clean, discipline and peaceful. The whole environment was soothing and specially the home tour with you as an guide. I still cant forget newborn and little babies room, their smiling faces, their speaking, calling eyes... The Girls were so well mannered, I wonder why cant our children be same at our home, the best thing was the Pratham Education which was followed till Std. 10th, they were so intelligent, smart and quick, the education module is excellent with lot many practicals, we sent our kids to central boards and IB / IG, but let me tell you these girls would give tough fight to all town kids. Our Session and whole program was very well planned by your team , Deepa mam was too good. What we did was just out of heart, we wanted to make them laugh, dance, sing and give them take back some Life Skill learning of real life, Satyamev Jayate Active ageing clip was purposely shown to let them know nothing is impossible in this world; age, disability, poverty, class, caste, religion, gender etc does not matter if you are focus and have strong Will power. 
I thank my Colleague Jenet Faras and Dhanalaxmi Rao and your colleague Yogendra ji for all the support. And it ended well with nice hand made stuff made by these girls, buying for our home. Raheen I  am so proud and happy for you and OYA - Open Your Arms I know you since 2009 and since then seen you falling and rising, it needs guts to DO the stuff you do for this young kids and society. Salute you for your commitment for the Children cause, your psychology background and good soul is added advantage for all of us. At Silver Innings we are happy to partner with you for our cause of elders. I Love Kids and Seniors, that brings me near God. Yes without community help this home wont make difference and good to see, lot many people come ahead and donate meaningful things to these children's. Let me know if we could do something, send me list of things they need monthly. One Last thing, just cant forget that baby, wanted to Adopt all of them, god is not stone hearted, he will surely give them HOME and Parents soon. Just keep on doing things you love and world will recognize you one day. God bless you always. Love and Hugs to TEAM OYA - Open Your Arms . 

Your small supporter - Sailesh Mishra

Saturday, 17 October 2015

"Spreading Smiles" - Launching OYA'S New Project

"Spreading Smiles"

- OYA'S New Initiative

Your mind cannot heal without laughter and Your soul cannot heal without joy...similarly great music can transform an ordinary day into something magical !

Many of us know the tremendous effects of music & laughter and the power it can have over both thoughts and emotions that include improving verbal IQ, aiding in heart disease treatment, evoking colors in the mind and even helping you see happy faces all around.
Laughter breaks the cycle of psychological negativity.
Laughter helps to think more clearly and have more integrative thoughts.
This is of great value to individuals who need or want to revisit, reorganize, or rearrange various aspects of their lives or experiences, to make them feel whole or more focused.
Individuals who laugh easily and frequently have better self-esteem and a much more positive outlook on life in general. 
In the bigger picture laughter is a survival skill that relieves tension, keeping us fluid and flexible instead of allowing us to become rigid and breakable in the face of change.
With these two as focal points OYA has come up with a new initiative "Spreading Smiles"....combination of Music & Laughter therapies with an integrated approach to improvise life skills.

- Roopa Mohan
Executive Catalyst
Open Your Arms Foundation

Thursday, 30 July 2015



 I joined OYA with the hope of learning new things, meeting new people, trying new things and pushing my boundaries…but I learnt that there are no boundaries to push as this world is huge and so are my opportunities
I clearly remember it was a Thursday when my mentor told me that I had to do a puppet show with my friend for kids between the age group of 4 to 7 at Sharanam(home for girls) At this point I had 2 problems.. 1st I had never done a puppet show before and 2nd I had never met the kids at Sharanam,so I had no idea what they were like. But as an intern with a first assignment me and my friend were determined to do we sat down and we decided to do the story of King Midas and his golden touch..we made puppets on ice cream sticks and a board with a night and day theme... and we decided that I would move the puppet and be the characters and she would do the narration...during practice I made a lot of mistakes. I forgot my lines when I remembered them I forgot to move the characters to make them look like they were talking and one time I knocked down the board that we made.. I was a total klutz.
So naturally on the day of the show I was nervous as I did not think I could do it... and my colleague kept reminding me...not to mess up my lines or not to forget that I had to move the characters to show as if they were talking.... when we reached Sharanam we met the girls and had the time to interact with them before the show. The kids were great and were excited to see the show. So we set the board up and the show began. During the show I could see the kids looking at the puppets and listening to story with such interest that it made me forget the things that can go wrong and just get into it…from this story we wanted the kids to get the message of not to be greedy and to be happy with what they have. And I guess we succeeded, but from this experience I learned a lot more, I learnt that just because we think we cant do something or we haven’t done something before, should not stop us from trying something new …Change is a part of life and so is learning.
So what! if you fail this time, so what!! if you get embarrassed. Its time that we stop thinking about what “people” think or say because in the next 30 years when you look back “these people” will not be the ones feeling the regret of not doing the things you wanted to do,or laughing at your funny memories or crying at your loss. So next time you think you can't do something or the task is way out of your comfort zone stand up look in the mirror and say “nah I can do it, and you my friend cant stop me because there may be people who could do this task better than me..BUT THEY WILL NEVER BE ANOTHER ME”

-Shivani F