Green Rider in Bodhgaya
I am Arjun.
Thanks to People First I got my own rickshaw and no longer have to hire one every day. I am earning more than I expected. I realize it is the main season here in Bodhgaya, but I can provide much better food for my own family now
But its more than that.
People First don't just give us a rickshaw and forget us. I have received classes in basic English, this does increase my earnings because foreigners do give more. I ask only the going rate from them because that is only fair and we have received guidance about the right way to behave, but in their currency I think it is quite a small amount, and sometimes I get generous tips. One person gave me a whole 100 rupees extra , we had chicken in our dwelling that day!
But it is more than that, being your own boss, earning your own money, and now People First have told me they will pay half the cost of day education for my children in a good private school as long as I send my daughter as well as my son. This is the first time anybody received an education in my family, I hope this is a new beginning for all of us.
And it started with my rickshaw.
The following was based on an interview with Arjun and his comments are unedited . Arjun understands why we asked him to tell his story and he has given his full consent. For the record 100 rupees is one UK pound or a dollar and 40 cents. The cost of educating Arjun's children in day school comes to about fifteen dollars a month. from these figure i an sure you can appreciate just how far your money can go here in India, and just what a difference it can make to someone's life.
Thank you so much, and please accept our very best compliments of the season.