I visited Whagela High School in Khambhat this morning. It is the same school that my father, Manher Rami, and Dr. Bhupendra Kapadia graduated from. We were supposed to met with girls from 9 through 12 standard, but only ended up meeting with the 9th standard girls since the 10th through 12th standard girls were in exams. First we met the principal Mr. Chowda and his assistant who briefed us on the program. We were to hand out some awards to the students who had received top marks on exams and then we would go over my BCA presentations.
We decided that only girls and female teachers would attend the presentation as boys or men might make the young girls uncomfortable. Although breast cancer mostly effects women between the ages of 40 and 50, we decided to do this presentation for young girls because they can educate their mothers, older sisters, aunts and neighbors and at the same time have this knowledge for themselves from an early age.
Dr. Bhupendra Kapadia and Dr. Bipin Shah sat through my presentation to see the girls’ reactions. Bipin Uncle noticed that each girl was intently listening to my lecture and watching the awareness video without any giggling or making shy faces. We held a question and answer session with the girls following the presentation.
After a pretty heavy presentation, we decided to have a little fun with the girls. I asked each girl to stand up and share their name, what they are studying and what fun activity they like to do other then studies. This is a math & science school so most of the girls are studying to become a doctor or engineer. The girls enjoy a variety of activities including volleyball, badminton, listening to music, singing, dancing and reading books, and just like my daughter, chatting online. I guess that is a common thread among their generation.
One of the teachers approached us as we were leaving and complained of a pain under the arm and breast. We told her to come see a doctor and do a mammogram. She came and saw Dr. Kapadia, and although he didn’t feel a lump or anything related to cancer, he advised mammography due to age.
The CCC is having a medical camp with 34 visiting physicians from the United States this Monday through Wednesday. I will be doing my presentation at the camps as well. At 1:30 pm we went to the village Tarpaper where the camp was setup at the government hospital. Coming from US the government hospital are just pathetic. The words ‘clean’ and ‘hygienic’ just doesn’t exist. I completed the presentation with a group of 30 young men and women from the nursing program from surrounding villages. I did the presentation in English for the first time and felt so comfortable. The group took a copy of my video presentation and said they would like to share with others. They complimented on my hard work and effort put in the project. It felt great to have the approval of medical professionals.
It was 5:00 pm by the time we came back. We all rested and then visited Dr. Thakorebhai Rana’s farm before we were to meet the press for a write up on the medical camp and my BCA project.
It was a long but successful day!