A word from Nadia
Last June, I travelled to India to visit and work with our partner, the NGO ASHWINI. The day after school had just started in Bangalore, in the midst of the monsoon and mango season, we met with Sujata and Bhavani, the two managers of the NGO. The two of them were extremely busy enrolling the new children at school, welcoming new mothers and getting the tution classes started.
Their faces brightened up with gratitude as we handed over, on behalf of our donors from France, England and even Singapore, our enveloppe of donations of 125.000 Rupees (about 1000€) !
Our donations came at a perfect time to coincide with the start of the school year. A portion was immediately used to fund the school fees of several new children to the trust whereas the rest will be used throughout the year for cultural and sport activities, outings and celebrations. I would like to say a very warm thank you to all our donors once again!
The children’s joy and enthusiasm to learn we have felt at Ashwini are strongly encouraging to pursue our action in supporting the development of all these children growing within the loving Ashwini family.
Your support is extremely precious to the children and they are very grateful for it.
Keep in touch,
Thirty new children join the loving Ashwini trust this year!
On the Monday 2nd of June, after their first day of school, the children have gathered at the trust, tucked in a small alleyway around Ulsoor lake. After a summer full of activities at the trust, the after school tuitions have resumed for all, that includes thirty new children to the trust this year! We see their eyes bright with excitement mixed with a little apprehension to stand up and introduce themselves one by one to the big group. Madhumita, Yathish, Vara Lakshmi and the others tell us of their respective passions to paint, read or dance. Sonia tells us how much she is looking forward to the after-school tutions in english and maths. She feels very privileged to now be part of the trust, to receive books and a bag for school, and daily snacks on top of all that! A few children go on to talk about their dreams for the future, their strong will to support their mothers and fathers. Renuka dreams of becoming a software engineer. She believes that the trust will help her to take the very first step in learning how to speak and work in English.
From now on, the thirty new children will be welcome every single day of the year, for tuitions, games, celebrations in the warm environment of the trust!
How Ashwini has helped Levina bloom over the past year
One afternoon, we sit down at the trust with the young 8 year old Levina and her mother Fatima to understand the role that Ashwini has played in their lives since joining the trust a year ago. We noticed Levina during after school tuitions, an angelic quiet presence, concentrating on her workbook.
A year at the trust has allowed Levina to become much more confident, and she now introduces herself and the trust proudly and in English, whereas at home, Levina and her mother have always spoken Tamil.
Being part of the trust brings Levina and her mother to engage in a world outside of their closely knit but confined residential community around Ulsoor lake. «By staying around where we live, there is no way our view of the world could expand», in the words of Fatima. «Here, there are so many more faces and so many more games to play», adds Levina.
When joining Ashwini trust, Fatima was advised to open a bank account to save up for Levina’s future. Every month, she is able to drop 100 rupees at the bank. By saving up slowly, Levina will be able to go to college ten years from now!
Titiane tells us about volunteering at Ashwini in Bangalore …
“Every day as I entered the trust, the dozens of children readily sat for class would greet me with an joyful «Namaste Akka!», joining their hands in prayer.
On weekday afternoons, I took part with several other volunteers in maths tuitions. Each child worked on a personal workbook, and I would respond to their queries, correct their exercises and go over newly learnt concepts with small groups. I encouraged them to help one another. I was touched by the dedication of the older children of the trust, those who are now in higher education and give their time on weekday afternoons to supervise the tuition sessions, walk the children across the busy roads, distribute books and snacks… On the weekends, I met this older group at the trust and organised a photography workshop. Each one took a selection of three photos, capturing the essence of their neighbourhood in a selection of three photographs. Going over the photographs gave us the occasion to engage in interesting conversations on the neighbourhood and its dynamics. At the end of the afternoon, I often stayed back for long conversations on cultural differences between France and India, fueled the never-ending curiosity of the children”.