“Together We Can Smile” (SMILE) is reaching out to marginalized communities in New Delhi, providing families with education, food, clothing, sports equipment, school materials, and, most importantly, time and love. A project of GPF India, SMILE hopes to bring a smile to both giver and receiver.
Launched in 2018, the program seeks to foster social cohesion, community engagement, and peace based on the ancient Indian precept of Vashudhaiva Kutumbakam, or “the world is one family.”
SMILE is designed to support parents and children with education about the family as the basic social unit and the first “school” for children. An informed family functions as a constructive unit in setting examples of compassion, love, and kindness across different segments of society.
Moral and ethical values can be learned from the rich traditions of Indian and world religions and are important in educating youth for leadership roles.
Children are introduced to various games, activities, music, and dance, as well as food, not only to promote a healthy lifestyle but also to direct the energy of the youth in a productive direction.
SMILE also inculcates a sense of community spirit and a culture of service among volunteers as they interact with the residents in the disadvantaged communities.
Interreligious and interfaith dialogue can also provide new ways of looking at religious doctrines, interpreting philosophical ideas, making inclusive policies, and supporting nation building. Moral and ethical values can be learned from the rich traditions of Indian and other world religions and are important in educating youth for leadership roles.
GPF India has engaged with the Ujjawal Foundation, Centre for Equity Studies, and other stakeholders and is planning sustainable SMILE programs in other disadvantaged communities in the coming months.
Learn more about GPF India’s peacebuilding work.