I remember like it was yesterday when I met Darshan on a Zoom call after his Discovery Session. He was hiding behind his mother and did not talk unless addressed. That too only a few short sentences.
When I shared that classes are done in a small group and not one on one as he expected, he was cold with fright. He nearly bailed on joining Pasxcel. He had a deep-rooted fear that children his age are all mean and bad. He got along just fine with those who are elder to him and the younger kids. His nightmare has been with students his age.
After his repeated bullying incident, Darshan barely left his room. Refused to go to school and was lost in life. He lost 7kgs in a matter of weeks.
It took concentrated effort to build him up. I initially spent a lot of time on one to one sessions with him. Coaching, motivating and guiding him. At this point, he has not signed up with Pasxcel yet. I continued each day slowly building up his confidence. When the time was right, I introduced him to hang out with one of Pasxcel’s student who volunteered to help Darshan.
As Darshan got comfortable talking to him, I then introduced him to another friend. Then I facilitated a small group for all of them to meet together. I remember when I returned to my Zoom room an hour later, it was pitch dark with laser beams on and all 3 of them were laughing like madmen, playing a game I did not know.
From then on, I’ve seen Darshan slowly get excited about learning, making new friends across the globe with Pasxcel and most excitingly, lead class discussions. Recently, he even did a Facebook live and participated in interviewing a teaching candidate! It is such a joy to see him blooming day by day. From a person who always wondered why his life was so inflicted by pain and oppression, he now wants to share his story so others might find inspiration and hope that better days are coming.
I recount how guilty his mother was in the initial days that I continued coaching Darshan without even asking her to pay any sort of deposit or fees. Looking back, I knew that was probably not the smartest business decision but I can assure you nothing comes close to building a child up or earning the gratitude of a parent.
When we were shooting this video, I was a few meters away from the set and I could hear him finish up, “You should sign up at Pasxcel because Mr Yuven will never give up on you.”
And I couldn’t help but tear.
It is my belief that every child needs a safe space to bloom into their full potential and I am grateful that Pasxcel has been this space for Darshan.
I sincerely hope that Darshan’s story reminds us of Churchill’s favourite quote, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
Written by : Teacher Yuven, Founder & Principal of Pasxcel Academy