Where the mind is full of love and care

Winter is a season that has so much more significance than all the others seasons of the year. It is a time of reflection because the season ushers in the power of a new beginning.

We have so many winters camps and programmes designed for our young people so that they do not stray far away from where they ought to be while they enjoy their winter vacation. Some are big, some small; some are aimed for long-term achievement, some for short. Camps they are all for the betterment of our young people.

All these speak of the need that our small society is earnestly crying for as we wade through challenging times. Change comes with cost.  For the things we stand to gain, we also must lose some measure of our true soul.

This week is a special week for some exceptionally young and dynamic Bhutanese. Sadly, they did not receive the attention they truly and rightly deserve.

Camp RUF (Rural-Urban Friendship) shines above all other camps and programmes for young people of this country. Camp RUF is a winter civic education programme that brings together and empowers Bhutanese students from rural and urban areas. This is a dream kept alive by a teacher whose dear friend convinced him to work for the benefit of our young people who are increasingly growing alien to our own belief systems.

Even as we breathe, children from urban Bhutan are in Tsirang today, walking into the villages and helping people with their daily activities. There is a picture of children helping households harvest orange and helping elders get on with things they need to accomplish every day.

If this picture of earnest effort to connect the fast distancing society does not touch your heart, nothing will. The nation ought to recognise the will and effort of late Kelzang Chhoden, a teacher who dreamt of more happy and peaceful Bhutan. She gave birth to the idea, but she did not live to see her dream take shape. This ought to be a tribute to the one who dared to dream.

There are also good things to celebrate when our people are increasingly becoming fragmented by narrow domestic walls.

Hail Camp RUF!

Love, care and reason must prevail this day in our narrative of national success. Some small acts do great good. How we appreciate them will define our goodness. How worthy are we of our own greatness?

1 reply
  1. irfan
    irfan says:

    An unique winter camp and to go along with that…the concept of ‘civic education’. It’s indeed refreshing to think young students taking a break from ‘personal education’ to learn a few new lessons for the goodness of the societies.

    When personal education or more accurately the school education that we have is responsible for shaping individual personalities; it’s considered that ‘civic education’ is what get the cultures shaped up in changing times. Somewhere we have stopped attributing our present culture prevalent in the society to the civic education that’s happening in today’s time.

    Every time we talk culture to our kids and youth, we tend to fly back to our times in the past or a time that belonged to our ancestors. There is nothing wrong in giving credits to the valued civic education of the past. But personal education that happens in today’s time whether one is living an urban or a rural life is very different from the past. We want our education to be modern and complete in a way so that even we can compete at a global standard. And it’s true that in the process we probably have got our civic education progressing in not the very desired way. Between change of culture and changing values of civic education, only our personal education can restore a better balance. So we must thank the RUF Camp to provide an opportunity for these youth to learn and find a better balance with personal-civic education outside the school campuses. And it must happen in today’s time. Otherwise, these youths may get lost between a culture of the past and that awaits us in the future. No better time to remember that with a New Year just round the corner.

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