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December 28th, 2010
Watch into MuchMusic’s special presentation of Degrassi In India on Wednesday, December 29 at 8pm ET!
In August 2010, through the continued partnership with Free The Children, fourteen Degrassi cast members helped build a school for an impoverished community in Udaipur, India. When not working on the educational facility, the cast immersed themselves in the culture of India. Combining the morning ritual of yoga and meditation, with Hindi classes, exploring markets, riding camels, and meeting children within the community, the trip proved to be a life-changing experience.
Find out what cast member Aislinn Paul thought of her experience in India and check out photo’s from the trip, as well as the one word that each cast member would use to describe their trip! For more information about Free the Children or to see how you can get involved, please go to www.freethechildren.com. We Day is Thursday September 30.
How do you describe an experience that changed your life? I’m not sure any writer could do India justice. It’s true that sometimes words fail, and so I hope these photos can assist my mediocre writing skills to illustrate the amazing physical and emotional journey my cast mates and I embarked on.
I’m still not sure how we managed to do so much on our trip! Of course we worked on the school project, but we also managed to visit palaces and temples, shop in the markets, even ride camels!
As you can see our trip to India was filled with so many incredible experiences, but I remember the small things the best. The way the CDs always skipped on our rides to the work site. The dryness that took over my hands after a long afternoon of working with cement. The way my breath was stolen every morning by the mountains that surrounded us. Those were the fleeting, some might say trivial, moments that made my trip unforgettable.
And obviously we met so many children on our trip! We met kids who were attending the Free the Children school, kids working in the market, and we even had the the rare opportunity to meet several child labourers. Some were shy, some were rambunctious, and some were serious, but each one of them had a fire burning in their eyes. They are so ready to take on life, and I am certain they will. These kids have more passion for life and learning than all of my classmates combined. I’m honoured to be able to say I met these incredible children and I know it’s only a matter of time before they are running the world.
I felt so alive in India. Every moment there was something new to take in, a new sight, a new sound; every sense was overwhelmed. When it was finally time to leave I realized how much the country had given me. It exposed me to a new culture, reminded me of how fortunate I am, and it strengthened relationships between all of the cast. Most importantly, it gave me new friendships with all of those kids. And no matter how short lived those friendships may have been in person, they will never leave my heart. I can only hope that I’ve changed their lives a fraction of the amount they’ve changed mine.