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A toast to the city’s little stars

The Horlicks WizKids recognises talent, on and off-stage, and inculcates social responsibility in children

Photo: M. Karunakaran

Winners all Pavan Kapnadak and Vasudha Mishra

Horlicks WizKids is back, and it’s bigger. This time, 10,000 students from 125 schools across Chennai got together over two days for the fifth edition of one of India’s biggest inter-school fiestas. The event is conducted in association with Activity, an organisation that conducts interschool events and works towards developing children’s personalities. This year, the contest included entries from Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Nepal.

The Chennai city finals took place on July 2 and 3, with Pavan Kapnadak, a Class IX student at Kola Saraswathi Senior Secondary school and Vasudha Mishra, a Class VI student of Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan Senior Secondary School emerging winners of the senior and junior categories respectively.

They will represent the city in the national finals, to be held in Bangalore, in November 2008.

Welcome initiative

At this year’s awards, Horlicks unveiled a new initiative, ‘Badlo Apne Bachpan Ka Size’ (change to a better childhood) to inculcate social responsibility and build awareness about child rights amongst children.

In keeping with this theme, all finalists gain the opportunity to work on a project for child rights. The winners of the national finals will be sent to work with the Charter of Social Responsibility, a U.K.-based NGO.

“Kids today are much more mature, but they need to understand that if they want to act like older people, they need to take the responsibility for their actions, and need to be aware of what’s happening around them,” says Naina, a counsellor at Activity. The best part of the event is that it is not meant only for the extroverts; students who prefer to exhibit their off-stage talent can use this as a platform too. There are over 40 events for them, including still photography, movie making, essay writing, crossword, drawing, painting and SuDoKu.

“This is a dream event,” says Neha, a Wiz Team finalist and a Class XI student at Chettinad Vidyashram. “It’s an amazing platform for students to show their talents, whatever they may be.”

Also, to show that a person does not have to always excel competitively in order to succeed, participation certificates are awarded to all students who take part in the event.

ADITI PRAKASH

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