Acclaimed ballroom dancer & choreographer
Being a Single Dad
Sandip Soparrkar is an Indian ballroom dancer and Bollywood choreographer. Sandip is the first from India to be certified by the ‘Ballroom Dance Teachers Training School’ in Bonn, Germany.
Sandip Soparrkar is the first single male adoptive parent in India. He adopted Arjun, in October 2007, who was two-and-a-half years old then. It was the culmination of four years of perseverance in the face of uncertainty, including a yearlong process of detailed scrutiny and evaluation of whether or not he was fit to be a father. “Adoption is an emotional decision – a need which can be felt as much by a man as a woman.”
Even though the adoption process was fraught with legalities & formalities, Sandip affirms that Arjun has improved his life and given a chance, he would like to adopt a second child too.
Arjun is now a preteen. Right now, the biggest source of anxiety for the dad is his son's impending adolescence. Arjun's demands have started increasing; the shoes have started matching the belts. It's a rite of passage that every parent has to brace himself for. But for a single parent, the phase can be a lot more taxing.
However, Sandip is confident that this too shall pass. In the end, he believes, what will remain is unconditional love.
Association with CSA in Sandip's words
IIn November 2009, CSA invited me to launch their book – ‘A Family for every Child’ at an event held at Crossword, Mumbai. Personally involved in the cause of adoption, I had no hesitation in accepting the invitation. It turned out to be a wonderful evening when celebrities, media and Adoption-supporters were present. I was impressed with CSA’s promotional efforts and decided to delve a little deeper. What I found was a dedicated initiative by a group of highly educated professionals many of whom were personally involved one way or another, with the cause of children living in orphanages. I also, sensed a clean and transparent organization.
Thus, when CSA invited me to be their ‘Cause Ambassador’, I was open to the idea. Unable to associate immediately due to other similar commitments, I assured them that I would come on-board as soon as was possible. CSA kept in touch and in November 2010, I became the ‘CSA Cause Ambassador’.
Arjun is loving, sprightly and a smart child. He has given me what I term as ‘the purest form of love’ where there are no intentions and no obligations. We are family, where the need to give and to receive is mutual; Arjun and I have ‘love’ in ample measure. When I look back, I realize the qualitative difference I have made to Arjun’s life; the child he is today is so different from what he was or, what he could have been had he remained and grown in the orphanage! It gives me a sense of immense joy and pride that I did finally complete the journey and that he is at home with me!
While there are a few lucky ones like Arjun, it is amazing that there are so many more who are waiting to be loved and hugged and brought home. Many of us, associated with the cause recognize that so much needs to be done and can be done! Adoption is the most complete and permanent form of rehabilitation. It is also, the lowest cost rehabilitation measure (to the Government) since the child is expected to remain in an orphanage only for a short period of time until a home is found for him/ her. I have never stopped wondering why so much apathy prevails and why so little is being done to encourage this form of rehabilitation. What CSA is doing is wonderful and as their ‘Cause Ambassador’, I feel proud to contribute.
My best wishes to CSA, and to all those who are a part of the process!
- Sandip Soparrkar