Please accept my apologies for the delay in writing this post, but I hope to make up for lost time by providing you as much information as you may need, if you visit this carnival in the future. On December 18 2019, I was invited to attend the Tamana Winter Carnival at the residence of the British High Commissioner in New Delhi, India. This was a Christmas market with a difference, as it was organised by the team that runs the Tamana Special School for differently-abled people. I believe this carnival is an annual tradition, one of many interesting activities organised by the school. If you would like to attend the next edition of the festival later this year, mark your calendars now. Till then, read on to know what you can expect here and what I thought of this event.
TAMANA SPECIAL SCHOOL:
Tamana is a non-profit voluntary organisation that helps people who are “mentally challenged, multiply disabled and autistic”. The phenomenal efforts of this organisation have been recognised by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India, the Department of Social Welfare; and the Government of Delhi as well as being registered with the National Trust.
Tamana offers individualised educational and rehabilitation programs for every student depending on their particular needs. These programs aim to make these special students socially and economically independent. The programs incorporate “special education, academic programs through NIOS, therapeutic interventions as well as vocational training”.
A stall at the Tamana Winter Carnival
TAMANA WINTER CARNIVAL:
The Tamana Winter Carnival is an annual fete organised by the school, usually in a central and prominent location in New Delhi. The idea behind this event is to create awareness of the causes the school supports, as well as to promote social integration of the special students that study here.
With a long list of eminent sponsors, the carnival is a popular event in Delhi’s winter calendar. This year, the event was spearheaded by the likes of the British High Commission, Jasmyrah Foundation, Coca Cola India, Modern Stage Service, Express Housekeepers Pvt. Ltd., SnapDeal, Jetha Bhai Zaveri Jewellers, V. Mart and the Communication Council.
It took place in the lawns of the residence of the British High Commissioner, at Rajaji Marg.
We ate sushi at Ziu and shopped at Pink Soda Edit
WHAT TO EXPECT AT TAMANA WINTER CARNIVAL:
Around 150 exhibitors showcase their wares at the Tamana Winter Carnival every year. These include popular and established names, as well as upcoming designers; local artisans as well as non-profits and NGOs. It is largely a shopping fest but also has a food court, draw of raffles and a few fun activities.
The range of products that can be found at the winter carnival include the latest designs of footwear, bags, apparel, jewellery, home decor, home linen, kids wear, stationery products and artisanal goods, among others.
There are a large number of food stalls to choose from, which will surely leave you spoilt for choice. There is also a kid’s corner and a donor’s raffle draw at the event, where there are some interesting and fun prizes to be won.
WHAT I BOUGHT AND ATE AT THE TAMANA WINTER CARNIVAL:
I was invited to the carnival by Dr. Aditi Mehrotra, a Paeditric Nutritionist closely associated with the Tamana Special School. That day, I was tasked with babysitting my niece and nephew. To entertain three children (including my son) between the ages of 3-9, the carnival seemed like a good idea.
We enjoyed eating sushi from Ziu and my nephew enjoyed momos from another stall, but we didn’t stay for lunch.
I asked each of the children to pick one gift for themselves, and all three chose notebooks or planners from different stationery stalls. There were many stalls selling the same kind of items but of different variety. I bought a lovely red sweater from a clothing store called Pink Soda Edit, which I later wore for my own Christmas party.
REVIEW OF TAMANA WINTER CARNIVAL:
In my opinion, there are many reasons to visit the Tamana winter carnival:
- It is in support of a good cause
- Your children will have the opportunity to mingle with the special students from the school, in a fun and regular environment, which will help to educate them and make them socially conscious
- You have the opportunity to fulfil your shopping needs for Christmas gifting/ the festive/ wedding season, in one place while being assured that the proceeds are for a worthy cause
- You can enjoy a nice family outing with food, games and shopping
- The location is convenient and easy to reach
- There are clean toilets readily available
However, you must keep a few points in mind, in case you visit the next edition of this carnival.
- The lawns were not spacious enough for an exhibition of this scale, which made the place very crowded. I recommend visiting in the morning for a hassle-free experience
- Be mindful of your little children, as they may get lost in the labyrinthine and jam-packed arrangement of the carnival
- The food was quite expensive for the amount that was served
- The shopping is varied in terms of price, so definitely browse through all stalls before deciding what to buy
- Avoid driving yourself to the venue, as parking is an issue in this part of Delhi
- The invitation was explicit in saying that entry is by “invite-only”. However, you can easily get the e-invite from the official website of the Tamana Special School (linked below)
Overall, I would say these are minor points that had no bearing on our overall experience. My son, nephew, niece and I enjoyed ourselves immensely and that’s all that matters!
Stay tuned for information on the next Tamana Winter Carnival on the official website of Tamana Special School as well as on their social media pages.
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