Udaipur’s Gulab Bagh was the site of a rich array of sights and sounds of children enjoying live entertainment, games, and art and craft, among several activities at the Urban95 on the 5th and 6th of March 2022. The festival was organised by Udaipur Municipal Corporation (UMC), in collaboration with Bernard Van Leer Foundation (BvLF) and with technical support from ICLEI South Asia, Ecorys India, and Jatan Sansthan.
UMC Commissioner Mr. Himmat Singh Barhath inaugurated the event, in the presence of Deputy Mayor Mr. Paras Singh, and India Representative of BvLF Ms. Rushda Majeed, among other attendees. The festival focused on children up to the age of 6 years and their caregivers. Activities such as art and craft, painting, block-printing, storytelling, hurdle race, skipping, games with balloons, among others were organised to support the learning of young children according to their personality and preferences and to provide behavioral insights to caregivers. There were puppet shows that highlighted the culture of the city, and a plantation campaign to spread the message of protecting the environment. The city health department conducted routine health checkups of children too, along with measurements of their height and weight.
At the festival, children could be seen engrossed in different activities, such as listening to stories, reading colorful books, following the instructions of a potter who was teaching them to make toys on the wheel, enjoying the tricks of a magician and watching a puppet show.
Ms. Rushda Majeed stated that “if a city is to be made safe, then it is necessary to see it through the eyes of young children. The development of the city should be in such a way that young children and their parents feel safe when they step out of the house.”
Commissioner Barhath appreciated the efforts of the project team in organising several engaging and interactive activities for the children. Deputy Mayor Paras Singh said that his childhood was spent playing in Gulab Bagh, adding that a part of the garden would be developed as a sensory park for the benefit of children.