Guest blogger Navaz Taraporevala
United Way invited my husband, Zubin, and I as guest speakers in November at the Koinonia foster youth group home in Loomis, CA. We shared our experiences about growing up in a different culture, since both of us grew up in India. We were very impressed by their curiosity to learn about a different culture and by the intelligent questions they asked about our experiences and customs.
The young ladies were eager to dress up in traditional attire from different regions of India like the sari, ghaghra-choli and salwar-kamiz. While the young men enjoyed playing a game similar to baseball, called cricket. Everyone must have enjoyed the snacks, tandoori chicken, pakoras or fritters (dipping vegetables in a batter of gram flour and then deep-frying them) & naan (Indian flatbread), since it was all eaten up! We brought different Indian fabrics and household items for them to explore. They were happy to receive an Indian coin as a keepsake and enjoyed the interactive nature of the workshop.
We were very pleased at meeting these wonderful young men and women, ages 15 to 18. We felt great hope for the future of these youth. My family, including my two sons (ages 8 & 6), received benefits from this workshop. We acquired a better appreciation for life in general and not taking our own little family for granted. The professionalism and emotional support provided by Koinonia employees impressed us. We enjoyed this experience a lot and would love to do this again.