"Ashraya" meaning 'shelter', was founded and registered in 1982 and has since then brought hope and love into the lives of many children and adults. Ashraya is committed to alleviate the sufferings of women and children in distress through our various programs.
Jan 22, 2013

Quarterly Report

Ashraya Neelbagh School and Ashraya Crèches continue to provide opportunities to underprivileged children from below poverty line families; Out of the total of 351 children studying at Neelbagh, we currently have 177 girls and 174 boys studying.  Currently, the hostel has a total 101 children, out of which 90 are children of migrant laborers.

The School closed on October 17th for Dussehra holidays. The children were very excited to finish their exams on 17th and leave to their homes for a ten day long break. A Parents’ teachers’ meeting was called for on the last day of School i.e. 17th October 2012. The meeting helped to update the parents on the performance of their children and improve their awareness on various subjects. The highlights of the meeting were:

  • The parents were educated about the RTE Act, under which their children have the ‘Right’ to good education in any school/college and how it could be utilized in order to continue their education in colleges after schooling at Neelbagh.
  • Cleanliness and hygiene issues were addressed with parents. They were also advised to keep their homes and their surroundings clean to prevent infections and illnesses, such as dengue, etc.
  • A separate meeting was held with the parents of slow learners who were told about the importance of their participation, to help the child grow and learn better. They were advised to be present with the child when they are doing their home work, to motivate them, even if they are unable to help them. The parents were counseled to make the environment peaceful and conducive for their children to help them do well in School and for their overall well- being.
  • A meeting with Grade 10 students was held along with their parents in order to motivate them to work hard for the final SSLC exams. The students were given a time table, to follow, during the break and the parents were informed about their schedule so that they enforce it in their homes.

The School reopened on 28th October and the campus was bustling with noise and activity, as the teachers and children were back to the grind. The month of November and December were filled with activities and workshops for seniors and juniors likewise. Art, Yoga, Dance and Theatre workshops provided an opportunity to explore students' creative and artistic interests, hone their talents, and develop self-management and interpersonal skills.

On the academic front, the senior (10th grade) children have been busy preparing for the preparatory exams in January and remedial classes are being conducted after regular school hours to help students with difficult subjects. Teachers spend time after school hours to help slow learners. Day scholars of 10th Grade joined the boarding in early January to benefit from special classes. Children are seen studying very hard for the upcoming final exams in January and March.

The New Year's eve was celebrated with great pomp and show. The evening had special cultural programmes such as singing, dance and drama by our talented children. They enjoyed themselves and welcomed the New Year with great enthusiasm.

An interesting collaboration with Adelphi University is being considered, through the volunteer organization, ‘Leave Your Mark’, to strengthen Ashraya’s Volunteer Program, in which their internship students, with a passion to teach, can volunteer with the children at Neelbagh School.

Cultural, Sports and events

The kids had a great time at the Cultural and Sports events that were held in this quarter. It included competitions in various sports such as kabadi, throwball, cricket, basketball, long jump and baseball. In cultural programmes children actively participated in folk singing and dance competition and free style group dance competition. These various events helped to bring out their hidden talents.

The ancient Greek philosopher, scientist and physician once said that individuals are known by what they repeatedly do – and if this is true, excellence and achievement are not an act but a habit.

Yet again, students from Neelbagh school participated in the annual inter school essay competition held on 14th of December 2012. Around 62 schools competed but Neelbagh transcended others. The topic given was “The importance of Ozone”.  Three of our high school students participated and are the winners of this year’s Kolar district level essay writing contest.

The first, second and third place was bagged by Ashraya Neelbagh School.Jayasree of 10th grade won the first place, followed by her classmate Manikanta - second and their junior Beemanandha of 9th grade won the third place.

Kolar district’s senior officers, Mr. Jalaluddin, C.E.O- Zilla Panchyat,Mr.Padmanabh, Deputy Director Public Education Institute, Mr. Md. Kalil, Block Education Officer and Mr. Vishwanth ,District commissioner distributed Certificates of commendation to the winners.

The entrants enjoyed researching, reading for and writing their essays as much as their science teacher enjoyed mentoring them.

Workshops and Enhanced learning opportunities provided by the School:

1. Yoga Workshop – From 5th to 8th November the workshop was conducted by              Ms. Sukanya from Art of Living gave senior students the practical knowledge and techniques to unlock their deepest potential and bring fullness to life. Whether happy and successful or feeling the stress of poor health, disappointments, or fear, every student was cared for and came away lighter, with effective techniques for releasing mental and physical stress and increasing his or her health, energy, peace, self-knowledge, awareness, and joy.

2. Art Workshop – on 2nd and 3rd November the workshop was conducted by Mr. Umesh Kumar taught the students that ART, wherein ‘A’ stands for building ATTENTION, ATTITUDE and AWARENESS,‘R’ stands for creating ‘Response’, and ‘T’ takes them TOWARD awareness  of  Self and Surrounding. Students were made aware about the dynamism in the creation of art that is fuelled by factors such as medium and techniques of art.

3. Career Counselling workshops – on 28th November and 4th of December the workshop was for the ninth and tenth grade students respectively. It provided an understanding to the students the importance of one’s academic potential, attribute, personality, talents, interest, expectation, resource, strength and weakness while choosing a course for a right career at the right time for a bright future.

4. Dance and Theatre workshops – Students from 5th to 10th grades are encouraged to participate in these workshops. It’s a source of fun and entertainment for the children. This workshop was conducted by Mr. Anand on 30th November and on 1st December. The children thoroughly enjoyed the workshop.


The crèches at Shivajinagar, Yelahanka and Sidapura have been running in an efficient manner. The Social worker made three visits in this quarter to monitor and evaluate the functioning and maintenance of the crèches. The doctor also paid monthly visits to the crèches to monitor the general health of the children. Progress in health and nutrition is evaluated and he also advises the teachers on nutritional requirements so that they can inform the families.

  •       The Shivajinagar crèche had a total strength of 50, 50 and 52 children in the months of October, November and December, respectively.
  •       The Sidapura crèche had a total strength of 25, 25 and 27 children in the months of October, November and December, respectively.
  •   The Yelahanka crèche had a total strength of 20, 20 and 21 children in the months of October, November and December, respectively.


An average of about 98 - 101 children attended the three crèches in this quarter.


We'd like to take this opportunity to thank our sponsors and want to reiterate that you are making a huge difference to the lives of these children.

Nov 2, 2012

Aug-Sep-Oc- update report

Ashraya Neelbagh School, celebrated its Founder's Day, on August 13th with Mr. Ashok Hattangady, one of the main patrons of Ashraya, being the Chief Guest. Various sports events were held in which the children participated and did very well, which was followed by a beautiful cultural show with folk dance, music and drama.

On the Annual Day, we got an opportunity to interact with the parents and find out about what they think about Neelbagh School and how it is meeting the needs of the deserving children in the villages. Here are some of their responses-

Madappa, a construction worker, earns a meager salary of 2100 per month. His son Marilinga is in 8th standard and daughter Devamma is in 6th standard, studying at Ashraya Neelbagh School. He says - ‘First and foremost our children are given hostels to stay, which is a blessing. Being a Construction worker, I stay in Bangalore I cannot travel up and down every day, but Neelbagh School has made us free from the ‘tension’ (I think he means ‘stress’) by providing shelter to our children. ‘They are looked after very well by the affectionate teachers and kind staff. Even if our children are not well, we have no reason to worry, there is hospital care that is being given to them in our absence. AshrayaNeelbagh School not only gives education and food, but it’s just like a “sweet home” for my children. Children are allowed to play games and participate in other activities, which is good for them’, he says.

 When he was asked, what he thought was different at Ashraya-Neelbagh School from other schools? He promptly responded, ‘Neelbagh School gives the children good medical attention when they are sick whereas other private schools are not doing so. And lot of private schools do not provide hostels to children. The teachers here are dedicated and affectionate. They share a good rapport with the children.' Neelbagh is the only school that lays emphasis on life skills and provides the children with vocational training. I think it is important because, tomorrow, in case they are not academically oriented, they have a skill in hand to rely on, which will help them earn a living’.

He added saying, -‘When children come out of Ashraya, they not only have education but also other skilled works with them. No other school empowers children like this!!. In School, our children are safe, and we feel that our children are at home', he smiled. 'Neelbagh is not only a school but a “Temple of Education” in the lives of the children. I know my children have a bright future in Ashraya-Neelbagh School’.

Venkatanarayana, a daily wage earner, earning a salary of about 2000 per month, says his son Karthik is in 10th standard, in Neelbagh School   and daughter Shilpa Rani is studying final year, Bachelor of Science, in a college. He says, -‘Neelbagh has a very good environment for the children. All the children are getting lunch, which is very important for us, as a daily wage earner, we cannot afford to send lunch for them every day. All the children, irrespective of caste, creed, etc. are given equal care and facilities. There is no discrimination. This is very special to us!! Teachers also don’t make any discrimination. They are very humble and polite.

 ‘The bus facility has made our children to move without any tension’ We do not worry about their safety when they are travelling from home to school as they are going by bus’. ‘We are happy with the service offered by Ashraya-Neelbagh School. and that students learn computer, Carpentry, Tailoring and Electrical work. This is very good for their future’, he says with a beaming smile.

 When he was asked, what he thought was different at Ashraya-Neelbagh School from other schools? He emphatically said,’ AshrayaNeelbagh School does not demand donations, whereas private schools demands thousands and lakhs of rupees. Meals are given to children whereas private school expects us to send packed meals for them. This is the only school with variety in education and other skills. Neelbagh School Headmaster and teachers respect the parents and hear their problems whereas private schools are not concerned with parents’ problems. Thank you for everything’.

The following workshops and enhanced learning opportunities were provided by the School:

  1. Clown therapy- ‘Verbano Onlus’, a group of volunteers, from Italy spent quality time with the children from primary to high School on 16th and 17th of August 2012. The clown therapy was a source of fun and entertainment for the children. It was timed well before they began preparing for their monthly tests and exams and served as a stress buster.
  2. Yoga workshop – Mr.Raja Manickam, an experienced yoga teacher in the city conducted a very inspirational yoga workshop for the High school children on 25th and 26th August 2012. The session covered some very useful yoga postures, sun salutation and breathing techniques to keep mentally and physically fit.
  3. Teachers’ training- An issue based training workshop was conducted by Ms. Indira Ganapathy on 1st and 2nd of September 2012. It was a way of celebrating Teachers’ day on 2nd Sep, productively.  The workshop introduced teachers to creative ways and methods of teaching, addressed common problems faced by teachers such as dealing with limited attention span of children. It also involved group activities and games for the teachers which helped team building. Overall, the workshop was a fun experience coupled with lot of learning.
  4. Self Organized Mediation Environments (SOMEs)- Ashraya currently has tied up with an initiative called solesandsomes, which brings together volunteers from different parts of the world to teach English and build language skills through personal/general conversations, story- telling etc. via Skype sessions. There is now a scheduled time set aside for this exercise, every day in the week and the children are thoroughly enjoying the session, which not only enhances their English language skills but also gives them an exposure to much more than text book oriented knowledge about different cultures, languages and people.
  5. Sex education worksop- Ms.Uttara Vidyasagar, an experienced counsellor conducted the sex education workshop for the high school children on 22 September 2012. It was to enable them to understand their biological differences and vulnerabilities so that they can differentiate between ‘good touch’ and ‘bad touch’ and can protect themselves. They also learn about their own sexuality which is critical during adolescence.

The school continues to drive the ‘Importance of education’ and strives towards providing a holistic environment for the children by offering opportunities for all rounded development to all the children without any discrimination in the rural areas, thereby contributing to a future with educated and informed youngsters.

Oct 24, 2012

Update on Ashraya's creches

Ashraya’s crèches have been running well and children have been fairly regular to the creches. A lot of people were being affected by the Dengue virus in the city. as a precautionary measure, we got Ashraya's doctor to speak to the parents about the causes of dengue fever and methods to prevent it. The parents were told to be cautious of stagnant water, which aids breeding of mosquitoes and were advised of the symptoms of dengue fever to help its early detection and medical intervention.

The Project head makes frequent visits to the crèches to monitor their functioning, including maintenance of records such as admissions register, children’s register, attendance register, etc.

Through Ashraya’s crèches, we endeavour to improve livelihoods by enabling women to go to work and bring home an additional income. We got a chance to speak to some of the mothers about how the day care facility has helped them and their children. The exercise gave us an insight into the ‘Chain Effect’ of Ashraya’s Creche program, on women and children, the most vulnerable section of the society.

Amsa, a domestic worker and wife of a street vendor, jumped in enthusiastically to present her views. In the local dialect, she said, ‘Ashraya is a big relief to me. In other crèches, they charge a minimum of 500 rupees per month to keep the child for half a day. We cannot afford that. Now, I am able to work without any worry as my child couldn’t have been in a better place. This is like her home, and the staff look after her better than we do. I am able to go to work now and I don’t have to ask my husband for money to give my child whatever she wants. Earlier, I wasn’t earning and had to depend on my husband’s earning to buy each and everything. I did not feel good about it. Today, I am so proud that I can buy whatever my child asks for and I don’t need to wait for anybody’s consent.’


Glory, a housemaid, leaves her 3 year old child at the crèche and starts her day at 9:30 am after completing her household chores. In a resounding tone, Glory, says- ‘The crèche is like a blessing to me!! I used to work only for two hours, leaving my child at my mother-in-law, who is also old and does not have enough energy to look after a young child. Hence I had to get back home early. Now, I am able to work from 9:30 to 1 pm and earn a better income, which makes me happy, as my husband is a daily wage earner and brings home only a meagre income. Moreover, my child is learning ABC, 123, etc. I can’t ask for more’.

Ashraya hopes to continue touching more lives in the near future!!

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