With all the educational institutes shut down because of the pandemic, they are finding ways to connect to the children to keep them engaged. Some online platforms are doing the same.
In April, an NGO named ‘Leher India’ that works for women and children initiated a multi-lingual storytelling program called Apalam Chapalam on Social Media platforms- Youtube and Instagram.
This program mainly focused on underprivileged children, it has videos of folk tales retold through songs. The narrators are from diverse backgrounds and age-groups.
Musician Ankur Tewari shares a story from Uttarakhand while picking his guitar. And writer Jerry Pinto reads a lockdown poem. While Ratna Pathak retells an original story.
Apalam Chapalam’s main aim is to use video to oral storytelling and do it in the regional languages. Three videos were posted last week, in collaboration with Tulika Books based in Chennai, to recite a poem about the novel coronavirus in English, Hindi, and Tamil. This poem features actor Kalki Koechlin dressed up as a mischievous red-haired witch.
Following the instructions on their Instagram page, you can contribute a story. Co-Creators Mandovi Menon and Aliya Khan say,” It’s a collaborative platform that is owned by none and yet belongs to all of us”.
Menon is a media entrepreneur and former editor of the platform Homegrown, while Khan is an aspiring film-maker who worked with Conde Nast India and BBC Studios in the past.
It’s been little over a month since this Apalam Chapalam was launched, but it has been having an intense impact on kids and adults too, who feel like being carried back to their childhood days, while narrators have found a renewed sense of purpose.