We Shall Overcome Someday

by, Elise Anderson

One of the best days was created by a vote. We had the choice to either do the cultural exchange at the high school in Chamba, or visit each of the schools and have little cultural exchanges at each one. I was set on doing the exchange for the high school since I wanted to see their dances and hear their songs; however the other choice was more appealing to the rest of YMAD.

We began at Kalsuin and came when the kids were performing their morning exercises for us. They began chanting and marching and moving and it was a neat experience to see. After we performed one of our dances, all of the YMAD kids pulled the Kalsuin kids up to dance. Everyone loved it so much and there were plenty of smiles flashed throughout the song.

Our next stop was ERA and it definitely had the most kids. When we finished our performance, the older kids sang the song "We Shall Overcome" and it goes like this:
We shall overcome,
We shall overcome,
We shall overcome,
Deep in my heart, I do believe that we shall overcome someday.

It was really neat to hear these kids sing this song and I hope they take these words to heart. After their song they took us into a building and the older kids showed us one of the coolest dances I have ever seen.

Next was my own orphanage of Sahoo, I didn't think it could compete with the display that ERA gave us since our kids' strong point isn't in organization. When we arrived, all of the kids were so excited to see my and my group and they were jumping on us and hugging us and clinging to us; this didn't only happen to me and my group, but to the rest of YMAD. Our kids are so friendly and loving and at the end of our brief visit, they were calling all of the girls "didi (sister)" and all of the boys "baya (brother)". It was so hard saying goodbye because we only have one more day with them.

The last school was Nihan and it is built on the edge of a cliff with a drop of about sixty feet from where the kids play. These kids also sang "we shall overcome" and it only drove that thought further in my mind. We had some extra time left to spend playing with the kids after our final performance and they were so welcoming of the YMAD members who aren't in their school. This was the only school that we sang our song "You'll Be in My Heart" and I started to cry. It surprised me that I cried singing to these kids that I just met but the words were true none the less.

All of the kids in each school are so incredible and loving and I have come to love all of the kids in all of the schools even if I hardly know some of them. These words still ring in my head, and I know I will never forget them:

Deep in my heart, I do believe that we shall overcome someday.