Aizawl: Derek C Lalchhanhima, whose innocent act of rushing a hurt chick to a hospital in Mizoram’s Sairang area was praised by social media, has now received the ‘Compassionate Kid Award’ from PETA India in recognition of his concern for animals.
When Derek accidentally ran over a chick with his bicycle, he rushed home and asked his parents to help the bird. The boy’s father, Dhiraj Chhetri, advised him to take the bird to the local hospital.
With Rs 10 in his pocket, the boy rushed to the hospital and begged the staff there to treat the chick – not realising that the chick had already died. The hospital staff told him that it was too late.
The image of young Derek holding the dead chick in one hand and the Rs 10 note in another had recently gone viral on social media.
“Developing empathy for animals is a key step towards developing empathy for – and rejecting violence against – all beings, including humans. It’s important, therefore, that students learn at an early age that the animals with whom we share this planet are, in many ways, not so different from us,” said a statement released by PETA India recently.
PETA India’s ‘Compassionate Citizen’ programme is especially designed to help students between the ages of 8 and 12 years better understand and appreciate animals. It consists of a 23-minute video with fascinating footage of animals, along with cartoons and a text pack.
The more schools that include Compassionate Citizen in their curriculum, the more of a positive impact the programme will have on society. “PETA India has sent a copy of it to Derek’s school, St Pio School, in Aizawl,” the statement added.