CHI graduates present a check to Christel DeHaan
“To Care, To Share, To Make a Difference.”
Soundharya and all Christel House India (CHI) students have recited this mantra for many years, and in February Soundharya was part of a group of CHI graduates who put these words into action.
Soundharya began attending Christel House India in 2003. Her father was a construction worker and her mother worked as a sales clerk – both barely making ends meet. Fighting the odds, Soundharya went on to graduate from Christel House India and after high school was hired on for a 2 year apprenticeship training program at The Taj Hotel, a prestigious hotel in Bangalore. Despite finding the apprenticeship program extremely difficult, she persisted and was even offered a full time job at The Taj Hotel on MG Road, one of their most prestigious properties. Soundharya‘s salary is a great support to her family and, because of it, her younger sister can now go to college.
Supporting her family was not enough for Soundharya, however, she wanted to do more. In February, Soundharya and a group of her former classmates pooled their resources and presented a check to Founder, Christel DeHaan as a donation to Christel House. The students presented their donation during the school’s 2013 graduation ceremony to set an example for their younger classmates. The check was worth 24,700 Rupees – about $450 USD – a huge sum for these students.
When Founder, Christel DeHaan received the check, she was brought to tears by the student’s generosity and spirit of giving. She had seen the model of Christel House come full circle – students who had broken the cycle of poverty and were now giving back to help the next generation.
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