Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people

by HANDS AROUND THE WORLD
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Help disadvantaged Bengali children + young people
Games on Children's Day
Games on Children's Day

Celebrations in the NLC!

Education in the broadest sense brings out the individual talents of the children. When I was teaching I enjoyed being involved in the school plays, behind the scenes, as I saw another side to the children who sat in front of me in class. Mr Naskar knows this only too well and despite the difficulties of the past few years he is always keen to balance education with celebration.

There are fixed events in the New Life Centre school timetable, such as Father Ante Gabric’s (the person who inspired Alindra) birthday, Sports day, but also Teacher’s day and Children’s day. World Children’s day in November was celebrated in the school and the parachute we took out with us in 2019 was used for games and fun once again. This is followed by a meal prepared by the teachers for the children, providing nourishment for the body as well as the mind. Then games ensue with Alindra keen to show his football skills!

When we visit the school Alindra always arranges an outing with the staff to foster a sense of teamwork and community. We have been to the Sunderbans National Park for a day out on a boat, but more often we have just taken a boat locally in the delta. One time when we arrived for Diwali we met in the school in the evening and lit candles around the roof and then had fireworks.

As Director of the school Alindra promotes an ethos of family support, which I enjoyed in some UK schools but not all. Of course the childrens’ academic studies are paramount, especially in this poor deprived forgotten area of West Bengal, but what is also essential for a school is to know the children who are sitting in front of you, their family situation, their motivation and their dreams.

Alindra has not only established a school which provides a higher level of education than is seen anywhere locally, but also an ethos of a caring fun environment, a model unparalleled in this region.

Wouldn’t you like to be involved in this inspirational school?

A special meal prepared by the teachers
A special meal prepared by the teachers
Alindra shows his football skills!
Alindra shows his football skills!
Team building for staff and volunteers
Team building for staff and volunteers
Celebrating Diwali with fireworks on the roof
Celebrating Diwali with fireworks on the roof
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

As well as running the New Life Centre school, Mr Naskar has provided a tailoring course and a computer course in the classrooms after school, for young women and men who leave school with no qualifications, and are in need of vocational training.

The computer course has had a difficult time as the electricity in this area is unpredictable, and the pandemic curtailed this activity for the time being. However the tailoring course has been running since 2008, when a group of Hands Around the World volunteers helped to build the second block of classrooms, which provided space for this programme.

One of Alindra’s extended family, who had trained in tailoring has run the course since 2008, and over 200 ladies have completed it, many going on to be self-employed working from home as can be seen in the photos.

This vital source of income in an extremely deprived area is just another way that Mr Naskar enables the local community to broaden their horizons and have more choice in their own lives and their childrens.

Many of the women who have attended the tailoring course have sent their children to the NLC school, thus ensuring a good quality education for the next generation, which they were deprived of themselves.

Working from home
Working from home
The thriving tailoring course
The thriving tailoring course
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

The New Life Centre school finally reopened to all the pupils on 16th March 2022. The last two years have been difficult for Mr Naskar as he has struggled to keep in touch with the older children in the school by various means. The Indian government advised schools to go online, as schools did here, but in an area where the majority of parents do not have access to the internet, this was impossible!

Undeterred Mr Naskar kept in touch with the staff who maintained some contact with the older children, either through phones or delivering hard copies of work to be filled in and returned. Despite these conditions, those sitting their Board exam in 2021 did extremely well and have moved on to college and further studies.

The consequences of the pandemic will be felt for many years in this isolated rural location. Many families left the area to go to the city, where there was more help and the chances of a better living. The Government schools in the area around the NLC are offering food packages, which is a Government incentive to get children back to school, but also means that the school roll for the NLC has diminished.

As always Mr Naskar remains positive that the lure of a good education will win and he is confident that parents who are now sending their children to the Government schools will return to the NLC in due course. The discipline and ethos of the NLC as seen in the assembly photo means that the students, who are destined to repeat the ‘hand to mouth’ living of their parents, if they attend the local Government schools, will be given greater choices in the NLC and further education, which is their gateway to a better life.

In the meantime if you would like to enable this inspiring individual and his school to flourish please donate to this life changing cause.

Handing out cakes to welcome the children back!
Handing out cakes to welcome the children back!
Mr Naskar in his office
Mr Naskar in his office
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Abu joining in with the parachute games
Abu joining in with the parachute games

In my last report I wrote about one of the female students who had passed her Board Exam with flying colours. The whole class of Year X at the New Life Centre School did well scoring between 87% and 75%.

Quite a few of the students were sponsored by HATW and Alindra has enabled them to go onto further education in Senior Secondary schools locally. As well as Nilima who I mentioned last time Abu is another student who was sponsored throughout his time at the school.

The photo below is of Abu when he entered the school in 2012. He had the same sponsor for 9 years and so the sponsor has watched this young man develop into a well-educated confident teenager. It is always a privilege for me to see the difference a good education makes to these young people when I visit, and watch them grow in confidence throughout their time at the school.

On my last visit in 2019 we took a parachute with us, and although Abu looked ‘too cool for school’ as a teenager in his ‘shades’, he enjoyed joining in the parachute games, as seen above.

Now he has left school and as I said is in a Senior secondary school, where his important beginning at the New Life Centre school has laid the foundations for a life better than his parents could ever have imagined for their children, thanks to Alindra.

Thanks so much for your support and if you'd like to find out more about sponsoring a child in India, please contact jane@hatw.org.uk.

Abu when he joined the NLC school in 2012
Abu when he joined the NLC school in 2012
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Class X, NLC school
Class X, NLC school

The New Life Centre school has been closed since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, but Mr Naskar and his dedicated staff have kept in contact with the older school children either through their phones or by hard copies of work. This has been no mean feat in an area which is isolated and prone to flooding.

Priority has been given to the older schoolchildren, particularly Class X pictured above who were in school briefly to prepare for their Board exam, the equivalent of our GCSEs. Initially the Government hoped to hold the exams, but in the end they were assessed from their Class IX exams in school.

Nilima on the right of the photo below has been at the school for nine years, and has always worked hard and obtained high marks in her work. Nilima scored the top result in her year group, 87%, outstanding for her year. Nilima’s father is a tailor and has a small plot of land for their personal needs, but as with most of the families in the school this tends to be a subsistence living. Nilima has been sponsored throughout her time at the school through Hands Around the World, and the benefits are clear to see.

Nilima is ambitious and wants to become an English teacher after completing Sixth form studies then University. She has expressed her desire to return to the school in the future as an English teacher, in appreciation of the education she received.

Wouldn’t you like to sponsor a child and expand their horizons?

Nilima (right) and friend at school
Nilima (right) and friend at school

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
 

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

HANDS AROUND THE WORLD

Location: MONMOUTH, MONMOUTHSHIRE - United Kingdom
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Bridget Higginson
Monmouth, Monmouthshire United Kingdom
$17,698 raised of $29,880 goal
 
95 donations
$12,182 to go
Donate Now
lock
Donating through GlobalGiving is safe, secure, and easy with many payment options to choose from. View other ways to donate

HANDS AROUND THE WORLD has earned this recognition on GlobalGiving:

Help raise money!

Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.