Freddie the Fish swims to Pune

Posted by Helen 
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A few days ago, Freddie the Fish finished the first stage of his journey which is ultimately to finish in Aarohi (so small it isn’t on my map, way up in the northern Indian State of Uttarakhand, thousands of metres above sea level) where we support the school. So where did I meet Freddie? Well it was in Pune (inland from Mumbai, up in the Western Ghats) and it was in the Mercedes Benz International School where I had spoken to students before. Freddie was very tired, having swum all the way from England, but very happy to meet all the young kids that have been following his progress, and collecting Rupees themselves for Aarohi.

Helen and Freddie in class

I spoke to two groups of kids (pre-school and primary) and took loads of questions on Freddie and his travels. They had been well primed by Ms Helen (Helen Sharrock, Principal of Primary Teaching at MBIS). She had explained to them that Freddie was raising money for children less fortunate than themselves up in the Himalayas, so their imagination had been well and truly fired, pictures had been drawn, and the magic had begun.

Impressions of Freddie the Fish

They showed me ‘Freddie’s Fishbowl’ that he will travel in on his overland stints between rivers and is currently being used to collect the Rupees that will buy the books that Ms Gina (Gina Ali Khan, who those of you remember Helping Elsewhere’s early steps will recognise) will take up to Aarohi in June. I will follow shortly after to give you all firsthand knowledge of what is happening and how you have helped.

Freddie collecting Rupees in Pune

A bit of info I gleaned from Gina – Uttarakhand is one of the fastest growing States in India and carries the alternative name of Dev Bhoomi – or ‘The Land of the Gods’ which sounds much nicer than the literal translation of Uttarakhand which simply means ‘North Land’ in Sanskrit (which is still a National language in that State, and in no other State). The climate is temperate and sub-tropical – this seems to mean I will get wet!

So I have bought my waterproof rucksack and proper footware and am busy collecting together all the drab blacks, browns and greens that will not show the mud too much and can be easily washed and wrung out. Those of you that know me too well will know my love of colour and fabrics, so this is going to be strange for me!

STOP PRESS!!!

MBIS have just released the figure that the young kids I spoke to have raised so far from their pocket money…

… a whopping Rs.3356.75!

Feeding Freddies Fishbowl

Wow, thank you kids!!!

And apparently another school in Goa (I know not which… Freddie’s getting famous!) have also slipped another Rs.1000 into Freddie’s fishbowl! So thank you that great school too!

 

3 Responses to “Freddie the Fish swims to Pune”

  1. Gina Ali Khan says, February 13th, 2015 at 14:12

    We love you Helen & Colin and the Helping Elsewhere team!!! You have helped so many children n now words just fail me !! Thank you million times over. Now looking forward to seeing Freddie the Fish in Aarohi and watching bridges being built between the children of MBIS and the children of Aarohi and Goa !! Look where just a chat under the coconut palms of Elsewhere has taken us !
    gina xxxxx

  2. Sheeba Sen says, February 14th, 2015 at 02:13

    Truly wonderful Helen. All of us at Aarohi are totally bowled over by your commitment and enthusiasm.

    We all are waiting to welcome you in June!!

    with all our love,
    Sheeba on behalf of all the children and teachers at Aarohi Bal Sansar.

  3. Gail Hughes-Morgan says, February 22nd, 2015 at 15:52

    So inspiring to read about all the Helping Elsewhere initiatives Helen, Lottie and I are looking forward to a full update on your Goan journey when we see you again in England.
    Gail x

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