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

Alindra Naskar founder of the New Life Centre school in Sarberia is always keen to meet the local children as shown in this photograph, which I took when I visited.

Alindra’s school now has over 300 children but there are many more local children who have to endure the government schools which provide little education, as I saw for myself.

I visited a government primary school with Alindra, at the invitation of the Headmaster. There were 4 classes in the school, the first room we entered had Year 1 and Year 2 students, age 6-7. There were no tables or chairs so the children sat on the dirty floor with their book on their lap. They had divided themselves into the 2 year groups but there was no partition or separation, and I wondered how they could concentrate with 2 lessons going on at once?

The room was very shabby and dark and there was an unpleasant odour, yet as usual the children were all smiles, and well turned out. The majority didn’t have school uniform in this class, but they did further up the school.

There are 250 on this government school roll but only 50% attend on a daily basis. Part of the Headmaster’s job is to find out why the children don’t come to school, but when he visits their homes he said that he finds that they are already working.

Thanks to your support, Alindra has been able to improve the lives of some of the local children, but in order to continue expanding, he needs more funds, or sponsorship of individual children, a more sustainable way of providing a secure income, which at present pays 35% of the school’s expenditure.

You could help Alindra do much more than just take this boy’s hand?

Your hand could change his life forever.

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Celebrating Indian Independence Day
Celebrating Indian Independence Day

In August The New Life Centre in Sarberia celebrated the 65th year of Indian Independence as seen in the photo. Alindra Naskar, the Principal, spoke to the children about the real meaning of freedom and the place of education in a free society.

I have attended several festivities at the school during my visits, and Alindra believes that it is important for the children and staff to celebrate together.

Here we see the staff sharing some snacks at the end of Independence Day.

The school is helped by Hands Around The World’s sponsorship scheme, but in an attempt to educate as many children as possible, Alindra accepts all children whether they can pay or not.

The HATW sponsorship scheme is providing a much needed boost to the school fees that Alindra Naskar collects from the children. There are now 19 sponsors and I continue to recruit sponsors in the belief that this is the way to
self-sufficiency for Alindra.

One of the latest children to be sponsored was chosen by Alindra as her brother drowned tragically two years ago and her parents are still traumatised by his death. Alindra believed that by sponsoring this little girl, her parents would be given hope for the future. There are a lot of deep ponds around Sarberia, so this is an ever present danger.

Wouldn’t you like to support the school, and make the world of difference in the life of a child?

Snack time!
Snack time!
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The school at Sarberia started on 5th June 2005 with only 39 children and in this academic year 2012 there are about 300 hundred children and many more are seeking admission.

The Vocational Training Centre was built by Hands Around the World volunteers and local builders in 2008. This building is now used for school classrooms in the morning, but in the afternoon, there is also a sewing and embroidery course for the local women and a computer course for the young men who have little hope of employment after they have attended the government schools, and left with no qualifications.

Men with vision like Alindra Naskar are always looking for ways to improve the lives not only of the children whose potential has yet to be realised, but also the adults who have not had the benefit of a good education. As someone
with a medical background, he is also keen to provide Sarberia with a Health Clinic, where locals can be treated inexpensively, but also learn about hygiene and good health practice. He is concerned about the disaffected youth in the village who have dropped out of the government schools, which is why he began the computer course to
motivate them, as well as providing picnics for the old people to gather and share their concerns with one another.

Alindra writes ‘Our challenge is not only to educate the children but also educate the family as a whole by educating the parents from where the children basically grow up in life. Hence the parents need to be educated in healthy living and understand the value of education. In this way the children and parents are equally a priority for us in order to achieve the success the children so rightly deserve.’

Sponsors and donors so far have enabled Alindra to achieve this much, and he is extremely grateful for all the help and support he has received. He will not rest however until he has improved the lives of the villagers of Sarberia, whom he serves tirelessly.

I am thankful that I have had the opportunity to meet such an inspirational man, the type of person that you only tend to read about.

Wouldn’t you like to walk hand in hand with Alindra Naskar?

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I have recently returned from Sarberia, West Bengal, my third visit in four years.
Each time I go I return with renewed vigour to help the New Life Centre’s Director, Alindra Naskar accomplish his vision of a good education for the village children of this deprived area.

During this trip we visited a local government school, 10 minutes walk from the New Life Centre but a million miles away in terms of facilities and practice. There were no tables and chairs in the school for the children, and only 50% of the children attend regularly.

When I first went to Sarberia in 2008 there were 120 children at the school, now there are just over 300 on the roll. Sponsorship through Hands Around the World’s scheme, is even more important as Alindra never turns anyone away, just because they can’t pay.

What is also great is to see more girls staying on at the school, as girls tend to drop out of schooling earlier than boys in this area.

We have 17 sponsors for the school at the moment and I want to double that number in the next few months. If you could see the joy on the children’s faces as they sing the Indian National anthem at assembly, or take part in the
sports which follows extra tuition in the afternoon, then you wouldn’t hesitate to join our band of sponsors.

This is a truly worthwhile cause, and by sponsoring a child in the New Life Centre, you will make a difference.   There are few real guarantees in life, but I can promise you that sponsorship money has a vital impact on the lives of the children educated in the New Life Centre.

 



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Hi,

I am delighted to let you know that Tess Molloy (our HATW project co-ordinator for this project) and Brian her husband are going (at their own expense) to visit Mr Naskar and 'his children' in the last week of February.

No doubt they will come back with loads of stories and photos! For the moment all is well and some new plans for the coming year are under discussion. Mr Naskar is always enthusiastically seeking to develop the work in Sarberia and seeking funds to help make it happen.

We promise to send you a full report when Tess comes home.

Meanwhile, many thanks for your interest - it will be wonderful to read soon about all the great work that is going on!

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HANDS AROUND THE WORLD

Location: MONMOUTH, MONMOUTHSHIRE - United Kingdom
Website:
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Project Leader:
Bridget Higginson
Monmouth, Monmouthshire United Kingdom
$17,508 raised of $29,880 goal
 
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