Holi is known as the festival of colours and to some, the festival of love. The festival originates from the Hindu regions of Nepal and India but has become a global celebration with the festival a regular date in the UK calendar. The date coincides with the arrival of spring and the end of winter.
Millions of people will get together and have a playful multi-coloured celebration of colours. The festival begins by communities coming together and bringing materials for a bonfire the evening before the day of holi. The next day is when the celebrations truly begin!
People will gather in one big group on the streets, parks and fields and share the experience of a rainbow of colours – by the end everyone involved will be covered in a spectrum of coloured powder. Groups of people will sing and dance, while playing the dhol drums in some regions – this year the kids had a water fight with balloons and water guns afterwards! It is a really fun time!
The festival celebrates many different cultural rituals and legends, including the legend of Prahlad. Prahlad was a young follower of Vishnu who despite being carried into fire by the demoness Holika managed a miraculous escape – good triumphed over evil – one of the common themes repeated in the rituals related to holi. In fact, there are many legends that are directly linked to Holi, and the reasons for celebration have evolved over time. It is thought that the festival may have existed several centuries before Christ, and although it started out bearing Holika’s name, it is now often simply known as ‘The Festival of Colours’. For some it is the festival of love – remembering Lord Krishna’s and Radha’s love.*
At Our Sansar we like to think that all of the children in our care are like Prahlad. Young children who are being led astray into a life on the streets with no support, nowhere to go and no education. We attempt to provide the support needed for street children to not just survive, but to learn and grown into strong members of a community. Holi is therefore a special time at Our Sansar, and all of the children, staff and volunteers love to celebrate!
We’d therefore like to thank everyone who has supported us in providing for all of the children and wish you a joyful and fun Holi!
To check out our latest campaign have a look at our global giving page here: http://www.globalgiving.co.uk/projects/cricket-for-street-children/
*To learn more about the history of the festival check out: http://www.holifestival.org/legend-holika-prahlad.html!