I have often wondered why pwhy came to be. A rather pointless question many may say as we are now in the 10th year of existence! And yet it is one that comes to my mind many times, always begging for an answer and never quite finding one.

The most obvious answer would of course be to reiterate our mission – arresting drop outs and keeping children in school – an on that account we have done pretty well. But there are innumerable organisations doing just that, and maybe better than of us. And does this explain the very organic manner of our growth, where we seem to take on new responsibilities at the drop of a hat, some a far cry from our stated mission!

Little Prakash once again makes me ask that question. A few months back we were content to see him play and laugh and thought that the story ended there. He was attending our creche and seemed happy. But then a few weeks back we realised that he was losing weight and suddenly he started looking more and more like his sibling. We took him to our doctor and were startled to find out that he be having hydrocephalus. A condition for which there is no cure and where the treatment is complex, expensive and delicate. It requires placing a shunt that needs life long monitoring. Something that a family like Prakash’s can ill afford. And yet untreated it can cause severe retardation and be life threatening.

The past few weeks has been a heady mix of events some thrilling, some just satisfying and some worrisome. The Board results came and went and the 100% result was accepted with a sense of deja vu, our eyes searching for toppers and we were rewarded as it is pwhy kids who topped their respective schools in both classes X and XII. Our land was paid for and though we still have loans to pay back and a whopping amount of money to raise for building planer why, we did feel a step closer to the day when we would be self sustainable. Those were the macro issues, the ones that seem in sync with all our mission statements and vision paper.

However the last few weeks were also replete with micro issues, those that concern individuals of no consequence, souls that no one would ever know exist: a 24 year old widowed mom who is attacked by a vicious disease; a 11 year old post heart surgery girl with a rare ailment, a father in need of help. And yet these almost invisible people did drop our way, almost as if guided by an unseen hand.

It is true that along the way, while we diligently applied ourselves to meeting our goals, mission and objectives, we were faced with many disturbing issues that needed to be addressed. Somehow it seemed impossible to brush them aside with a simple: we are an education based organisation. We simply accepted them and found the best solution we could, hence losing our carefully elaborated mission statements, vision papers and more of the same. To the outside eye we started looking more and more like a haphazard entity that never quite finds the words to describe itself.

We were never disturbed by this. On the contrary we found it to be the natural and obvious way to go happily adding on more whys to the already existing ones! Anything else would have been
unacceptable. And slowly we became who we are bringing to mind Frederic Nietzsche’s words: he who as a why to live can bear almost any how.

So to the question why did pwhy copme to be, the answer is simple: to bear the hows that came its way!