This Sunday, all of us were all set and eager to go to the SHG meeting. It was the excitement of hosting Mani Sir (Mr. Manimaran from Chennai, the national coordinator of TISA) in our meetings that motivated us a little more.A few of us first went to pick Mani Sir in the lodge. We met Mani Sir and his family at the hotel, and greeted all. After that, we headed straight to our venue- the YMCA hall, with Mani Sir. Others joined us there in the hall.
We started the meeting by interacting with Mani Sir, getting to know him and him getting to know all the members. We introduced ourselves and spoke about our professions and background.
Mani Sir then shared his story- his journey with stammering, how he landed up in self-help, then as Chennai chapter coordinator and now as a National Coordinator, running the first full-fledged centre in Chennai.
Mani Sir went on to explain about stammering in detail and the causes, and the three wrong things we (the PWS) do while speaking-
1. Not enough air in the lungs before speaking
2. Quick thought process than normal
3. Shallow breathing.
Then he taught us an exercise which would help us deal with all the above three mistakes we commit. This is a kind of speech therapy exercise which can be easily done by sitting on chair. Mani Sir first demonstrated the exercise, and then each one of us tried it. Mani Sir guided and corrected when required. He told us how and when we should do this and urged everybody to practice this for atleast 1 year.
Then we had quick presentations. One by one, each one of us spoke about – just anything that came to our mind. For some of us, Mani Sir asked questions and made us talk more. He also asked a few funny questions which made it more fun. After each speech, Mani Sir gave a feedback to each one of us, mentoring us on what we should be working on.
After that, we had a fun game. One person would start talking, and Mani sir would say stop. The last word that the speaker said had to be the first word of the next speaker. This was more like an ‘antakshari’ of speech. We had two rounds of this, and the second round was hilarious. Vikas introduced humour with an interesting topic, which we all continued with. (Any guesses for what the topic was??)
We all had some casual chats with Mani Sir as the meeting ended. We at Goa SHG are thankful to Mani Sir, who despite his personal visit in Goa attended our SHG meeting and spent three hours with us. These three hours were full of quality learning, fun and inspiring with a mentor in Mani Sir.
Thank you Mani Sir for everything.
Following are a few more pictures taken during the meeting: