Dear Kranti Supporters,
My name is Pinky, I am 17 and I was the first Revolutionary to come to Kranti when Kranti opened. It is 3 years this month. I can't believe it!! I also can’t believe that 2013 is gone! It has been a crazy, exciting and sometimes difficult year for all of us at Kranti, but we have done many big things we are very proud and happy about. I hope it is the same for you! For 2014, all the Revolutionaries will take turns writing Global Giving reports, so I am writing for November/December. There is just one word to explain these two months. BUSY!! The three big reasons why we were busy: 1.) Bhutan 2.) Play 3.) Exams.
Most of November, we were in Bhutan. Bhutan was beautiful and it was cold. This is all I remember. We spent many days in Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan. Because we are from Mumbai, the city looked like a small village to us, there are such few people! We visited some NGOs in Thimpu, one working for women who run away from home because their husbands beat them, one for saving tigers in India and Bhutan and one for people who have problems with drinking. Then we went trekking in the mountains for five days – it was -25C!!! We slept in tents at night. It was beautiful. But too cold. The most amazing thing we did in Bhutan was climb the Tiger’s Nest – it is a Buddhist monastery on a stone cliff, 3,000 feet high! It took us almost 3 hours to climb. Photos below!
When we came home from Bhutan, we have been sooooo busy because we are doing a play and we performed all over Mumbai. In this play, every girl tells a story connected to her life – Sumaiya plays a girl being trafficked because her mom was trafficked at nine, Sheetal plays a bar dancer because her mother danced in bars for ten years, Rani plays a girl whose principal won’t take her in school because everyone treats girls like us as if we are too “dirty” to go to normal schools, etc. We performed this play in many places, like in front of sex workers, at Mumbai’s most famous theater, and at a conference. When we were getting ready, we worked almost four hours a day for rehearsal! But we are glad we worked hard – allllll the audiences loved us! :)
And last, we are busy because we have many exams in late December. In India, final exams are in March. So in January, February and March, all children do nothing but study! At Kranti we are trying to cut some activities so we are not busy and can spend time on studying. We girls are excited that 2014 that will start slowly.
Thank you from alllll of us at Kranti for making 2013 such a wonderful year for all of us. I hope you will keep supporting us and all of our dreams in 2014. Happy New Year!!
Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you are enjoying your holidays because I am enjoying it a lot with my friends at Long Beach, CA. All of my friends are home with family...but of course Kranti cannot afford a plane ticket for me to visit my family for two weeks. We tried to talk to some airlines to see if they will give me a free ticket but nothing worked out. But it’s okay because now I am staying with my friend whose family is Indian. They are really nice they also contributed me money for my tickets to California. It is beautiful here, but most important, it is sunny and reminds me of home! :)
“I am done with my first semester. Wait….what?? Seriously? But I JUST came and I just started classes. What’s happening??” this was my reaction on the last day of our classes. This semester went like ZOOOOP and without realizing, the year is gone. It is great to have a break from classes now. But freshmen only have two weeks of break and everyone else has five weeks. It is very tragic. After two weeks we have to go back to Bard to do a class called Citizen Science, I hope it is good!
This semester has been a great change for me. It was mixed with everything crying, laughing, dancing, adjusting, learning, expressing, and sharing. While I was at college I used to ask myself, “Why am I even here in the states? I should have stayed in India and studied there.” This was all because I was thinking of my family and I was homesick, but I have finally made some friends and am starting to feel less homesick. My favorite class this semester was English for international students because we are all from different countries and we all have different culture and different stories to share. I am excited to change classes next semester and finally start psychology classes!
It was my birthday in December and I really missed my family. Last week, I called my mother and sang her a mother-child song. When I asked her not to cry, you know what she said? “Now that you are so strong I have become strong so don’t worry about me.” She is really amazing and I am so lucky to have her. I want to share two more exciting things about my family – one is that a university in Delhi is giving my mother an award (for ordinary women doing incredible things) and she will be flying to receive the award!!! :) I am very excited and proud! The other amazing news is that my half-sister, Kavita, will be joining Kranti soon! She is 19 and just finished 12th. She also wants to study abroad, so I hope to have her in New York with me next year!!! That is all for now. I hope you are all having wonderful, exciting holidays and looking forward to 2014 as much as I am.
Thank you for all of your support and making all of dreams possible this year!
Dear Friends & Supporters,
It is almost three months since class started at Bard! The first few weeks were great…I was happy and excited but I had this other weird feeling - I didn't know what. It was all magical; it's been about three months but I still have hard time believing that I am in the USA! It’s just crazy when I look back at my life – where I was even two years ago and where I am now. I miss my family and Kranti and, but I am happy that I am here. There are many students from different country and in my English class there are all international students. It's fun studying with them.
Here most of the things are different: culture, life style, food. Food is the most difficult change though – I REALLY miss Indian food! Maybe I am being biased but I think Indian food is the best. :) The education system is different from what I have experienced before. We read at home then discus it in the class and we all share our experiences. Even though I away from India, I am still close to it by doing some activities here, like there is this South Asian community where there are students from India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.
I have even spoken at many fundraisers for Indian organizations here, so I met many Indian-Americans here. I was at the fundraiser organized by Share and Care foundation and there were two THOUSAND Indian people there! I was shocked. OMG! Is it real? It was one of the biggest audiences I spoke to so far. People were very friendly and so many people came to tell they were inspired by my journey.
The most important news, of course – it snowed last night, this is my first snow! It is so so so hot in Mumbai and I have never seen snow falling. It was so beautiful my roommate captured my first reaction in her phone. I was so happy and excited it was magical and so beautiful. I was dancing until it stopped! Now that the magic id is done, I am scared that I will die of cold in the next couple months!! Just wish me luck that I survive through winter. :)
My family, they are so happy that I am away. You know why?? Because it saves so much food for them. They keep sending photos of food they are eating to make me feel jealous but even I send them my photos at Bard to make them jealous. I talk to my family about once a week, but I talk to my mom every day. I used to call her every day, then I stopped for a while, but she said please call for one minute every day, it feels good to hear your voice. I am so lucky to have such wonderful family, friends, and Kranti!
I cannot thank you enough for helping make my lifelong dream possible. I wanted to share just this little bit about my life, I hope you enjoyed reading and I will write every month from now on. Best wishes and happy Thanksgiving!