Various painting workshops was conducted for the volunteers and relatives of patients under the care of SANJEEVAN, on May 6 &7; May18 & 29, 2017; and May 20, 22 & 23, 2017, at villages Community Halls of Villages Vanakulam, Arachikuppam, and Athigapattu, Puducherry, as a part of the palliative care for terminally ill and chronically bed-ridden. The number of people who participated was as follows: 25 members participated in Vanakulam, 30 members at Arachikuppam, and 28 members at Athigapattu.
SANJEEVAN is an initiative of Sri Aurobindo Society in collaboration with the Institute of Palliative Medicine (IPM), Kozhikode, Kerala, aiming to practice an integral approach to end-of-life care in Puducherry, based on a spiritual approach. This initiative aims to develop a comprehensive system of community-based care for the incurably ill, chronically bedridden, elderly and dying people in Puducherry, by taking care of their physical, psychological, social, emotional and spiritual needs.
Aim and Objectives of These Workshops
The central aim of the service is to offer people the opportunity to develop their own creativity as a means of personal expression while giving people back some of the control they have lost through illness, disability and caring responsibilities. It also offers people the chance to try something new and to develop new skills, whilst engaging in a relaxing and meaningful activity during a difficult time in life.
The volunteers—students of schools and colleges, nurses, anganwadi workers and others—working within healthcare and palliative care professionals were especially invited to workshops at the community halls to explore the relevance of creative activity to palliative care. The vibrant colours, the ideas depicted on the walls and even the enthusiasm was extremely inspiring and even infectious, as many local people came and enjoyed the creative process in place to bring solace to the serious ill and dying patients, while making it a community effort to beautify their community halls.
At Athigapttu, an accomplished artist—Ms Nishat Rehman, a postgraduate in Fine Arts, from the College of Art, University of Delhi—helped the SANJEEVAN team conduct this workshop in the village milieu for the comfort of the patients. A community artist named Mr Lakshman (from Pillaiyarkuppam, Puducherry) was inspired by the work being carried out and he also volunteered to take this work up. He was a great motivational factor in bringing a lot of people from the surrounding villages to be a part of this cause and then they were also introduced to the importance of palliative care and ways in which everyone can participate in this cause.
Ms Nishat and Mr Lakshman undertook to help local people to paint the walls of the community centre with beautiful sketches and colors, and ended up having some really wonderful creative moments with patients, family and volunteers! This was an amazing exercise and cheerful moment in which SANJEEVAN made a visually happy difference by adding colors to the lives of everyone involved!