Wednesday, November 2, 2011


All celebrations & festivals are observed in Shafa. But as everything in Shafa has to be ‘Therapeutic’ hence each celebration has a therapeutic value behind it.

In the outer world one earns money through hard work, dedication and competence. This money is then used for buying our comfort and for our leisure besides providing for our livelihood and necessities of life. Similarly in Shafa there is great emphasis on the concept of ‘No Free Meals” in every day to day therapeutic activity. Residents are expected to be ‘accountable’ for everything and that they have to earn their way forward.

Around 15 days before Diwali, every night, residents accounted for earning ‘Brownie Points’ in the form of ‘ Shafa Currency’ and based on their positive behaviours. Simultaneously residents planned and organized a ‘Diwali Mela’ besides other celebrations for the day.  Stalls were set up for games and resident spend their earned ‘Shafa Currency’ and finally when food stalls were opened, they spend their remaining money to buy those items.

On this occasion various cultural programs were also organised, like Tambola, Musical chair, dance competitions etc.  Late in the evening Pooja was performed by the residents. Finally the day ended with illuminating the entire facility with candles and electrical fixtures, bursting fire crackers and a grand feast.

Residents of foreign origin also participated by singing Bollywood Hindi songs. One of the resident shared that ‘I was so involved throughout the day, that I didn’t realize how the day passed. Everything finished in a jiffy”. Another resident shared that before he goes to bed today, he will compare this Diwali with all other Diwalis of his life. The amount of happiness and enjoyment which he experienced in Shafa without being under any influence of drugs or alcohol can nowhere match any of his previous celebrations. In spite of not being with his family today, he was happier and enjoyed it more with his SHAFA family.

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