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Region 4 - Rugby & Coventry’s Global Service Day

This year, the Sathya Sai Centres of Coventry and Rugby joined together to celebrate Global Service Day at the new venue of Bubbenhall Village Hall on 15th July 2012. On this day we invite elderly and disabled people from care homes around Coventry and Rugby and provide entertainment, delicious food and a fun day out! Despite it raining for weeks leading up to this event, fortunately we were blessed with glorious sunshine on the day; Swami’s grace shown throughout yet again!

From 11am, volunteers began to arrive to set up chairs and marquees on the Bubbenhall field and were smiling and ready to help, escorting the guests from their minibuses to their seats from 1pm. Tea, coffee and biscuits were served whilst volunteers began welcoming and talking with our guests.

At 2:20pm, our compere brother Kishor Mistry welcomed everyone on behalf of the SSSSO and introduced our first item of the day. These were two Bharatanatyam dances performed by a group of 7 young girls in total. They were beautifully dressed in colourful silk traditional Indian clothing, gold jewellery and flowers in their hair. This was a wonderful start to the day and the girls brought a smile to everyone’s faces.

The dances were followed by a lively interactive drumming session by the Rugby Intercultural Drummers, showing everyone a variety of rhythms from around the world. Even a few guests from groups like the Catholic Fellowship and a couple of volunteers joined in with the drumming. This was enjoyed thoroughly by all our guests, especially our compere who had decided to solo dance around the drummers for us all!

Next were two very talented instrumentalists; Jessica played well known favourites 'Dancing Queen' and 'Hey Jude' on the flute. Following this, her brother Harrison played 'Dido's Farewell' on the cello. Their performances were received with great applause from the crowd and volunteers alike.

After a wonderful first half of the day, everybody was additionally rewarded with a scrumptious variety of food for lunch from sandwiches and pizza to quiches and samosa, which was all lovingly prepared by our volunteers. During the lunch break Pru Poretta, our Lady Godiva representative, arrived and interacted with all of our guests and some volunteers, brightening up the day even more!

The food was received with many compliments, and after that everyone was ready to get up and dance in time for our next item. Sisters Mina and Vina Mistry sang a mixture of Bollywood and English songs, appealing greatly to the different cultures in our audience. Songs included ‘Ajeeb Daastan Hey Ye’, ‘Dil Le Gayi Le Gayi’ and 'Brown Girl in the Ring.’ They were sung beautifully, encouraging audience members to join in and dance with them. Carrying on with the music and dance theme, this was followed by Gujarati Garba! This is a traditional North Indian folk dance that was led by brother Nagin and sisters Niru and Savita. It got everybody moving, even those who were unfamiliar with the Indian culture.

The finale to our Global Service Day is an annual favourite of both guests and volunteers – BINGO! Once bingo tickets and pens were handed out, volunteers made their way around the circle of guests, assisting them in the games. One very lucky guest by the name of Winifrede Dorrington happened to win both games of bingo and ended up going home with two great prizes!

Alas, the day drew to a close with brother Kishor giving a vote of thanks to our performers and volunteers and a final farewell to our amazing guests who continue to make the event so special each year.

Until next year, Jai Sai Ram!

Bhavika Patel and Saisha Mistry