I was visiting Bal Ashram in India, founded by Kailash Satyarthi, a children’s rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate. His compassionate work has led to the rescue of more than 80,000 children and delivered a compelling message on love and compassion.
Bal Ashram is a residential school for children rescued from child labor, child marriage, and other forms of exploitation. The primary aim of Bal Ashram is to provide a safe and nurturing environment for these children, offering food, shelter, healthcare, education, and vocational training. It was an elevating experience meeting these children who have endured tragedy, as we witnessed their resilience and the power to heal.
During our visit, I was struck repeatedly—and each time amazed—by the innocence and warmth of the kids. They came to me with open hearts, trusting in my goodness, despite having experienced a world and people who did not treat them with the same regard.
We celebrated Holi, a colorful festival that welcomes spring and the triumph of good over evil, with the children, Kailash and his wife Sumedha. The “triumph of good,” was clearly seen in that all of us were together and heralding aloud the victory of these young people who have overcome unimaginable trauma. We celebrated these kids’ astonishing innocence, eagerness, and soulfulness and the resilience of the human heart.
Among them was this young man whose beauty and dignity in this image is not only obvious, it is profound. His red-orange coloration is distinct, but the overall colorfulness he shares with his peers demonstrates their connectivity. Each boy, every person across the globe, is universally connected to the next while remaining an individual, a whole and magical being.
I’m donating a percentage of every print sold back to Bal Ashram to support these kids.