Dear Dr. Manu Prakash,
I’m Dipali Kadam from Bombay Dharavi, India. I’m studying in 10th grade at Shree Ganesh Vidya Mandir, Dharavi. I want to share some of memories, which are very close to my heart about foldscope. Dr. Manu Prakash, Dr. Shailja Gupta and some other people who made it happen.
Our family friend Kunal showed me foldscopes video of Dr. Manu Prakash on TED. The first thing that came in my mind is that bulky, heavy Microscope which I only heard about but couldn’t ever observed anything under it, because our school don’t have functional laboratory and we are studying science without it. The Microscope that I saw in that video just designed in sheet of paper with features as flexible, rigidness which is invented by very sweet person! After watching video, I decided to make it at home and to keep it in my school, so everyone in my school could explore it! I shared this thought with my teachers and lab assistant, but they didn’t show any interest in it. Months passed, but nothing innovative ever happened in my school. Education mere needs to go ahead, no one want to live the knowledge in our school, and that thing still hurts me, but school is necessary to us to take education. Days after days passed, but I couldn’t make my wish come true.
And suddenly magic happened as beautiful as fairy tale. Kunal came at our home as always, but this time something was really special; he gathered all of us, and the surprise was unrevealed. I and Kunal were going to fly to Delhi to attend foldscope’s workshop. Wasn’t it dream come true? I was flying in the air! That thing was very special to every one of us. Immediately we asked mother for permission. She was also proud of us, and she gave me permission to go to Delhi to attend India’s Fist Foldscope Workshop. I felt very proud of her to let me go because I’m the younger one in my siblings, and she is very concern about me.
The day came, 16th November, and we flew for Delhi. Finally, we reached there, but we couldn’t reach on time, and missed the beginning of workshop. It hurt me. As we reached, Dr. Shailja welcomed us. She is very nice person, as soon as she called Dr. Manu Prakash, and it was something unbelievable when I saw him. I was thrilled and damn excited to meet him, even Dr. Shailja caught those rare emotions. We started workshop in a group. I enjoyed lot with group members specially those three doctors from Maharashtra, whom I didn’t know before and, I don’t know their names yet. I thought Dr. Manu would be like other elders, but he was totally opposite of them. He is very childish like me. I felt very pampered with everyone there. That whole day was super excited, full of energy and enthusiasm. Dr. Shailja took me and Kunal outside to collect microorganisms. We observed Ant, leaf cells and, other micro cosmos in Workshop. That time, I had decided to observe and learn as much as I can; I was knowing that we can carry our foldscope with us. Now, I love biology branch, and I would love to write essay it if i’ll ask to write on “Your precious moments”.
I and my siblings, Sonali Kadam, Ruapali Kadam, Rupesh Kadam, and Kunal conducted workshop in our school. My classmates loved it. They were curious and excited about foldscope and, those teachers and lab assistant also loved it who couldn’t understand what I was willing to do with Foldscope. In workshop, some mates were observing plant cells, and some were observing their own cells. That experience was very different for them. They also want their own foldscope. I know this will take time, but it’ll happen soon.
Thank you so much Dr. Manu, Dr. Shailja, and all other who helped to made it happen. Dr. Manu, you promised me that you’ll come at my home. I’ll be waiting! We are extremely sorry for making you wait for feedback.
Bombay Dharavi, India.