Up in the Mountains…

Posted by Helen 
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Helping Elsewhere is always on the lookout for anything different and new, something special and ‘indefinable’, something, well, Helping Elsewhere.

So, in July I was very intrigued to see some wonderful photos of a rural school in somewhere ‘so small it is not even on a map’. Posted on Facebook by our dear teacher friend Gina, she was volunteering at this school in Satoli, set high in the hills of Uttarakhand – the Himalayas!

Himalayan Collage

It transpired that it was a project run by a small NGO called Aarohi – they work across twelve neighbouring villages and currently touch the lives of 168 children. They work to improve both the health and education (so often interlinked of course) of the community – but obviously our interest was piqued by the school. This has 15 full-time teachers, educates both boys and girls and caters from nursery to Grade 9 (approx ages 3-14). Admission is granted whatever the background of the kids.

Aarohi - Satoli School

Gina was telling everybody what we had achieved in Mandrem, Goa and so it was inevitable that I recently went up to London to meet Sheeba Sen who lives half her life in England and half in Uttarakhand. A lovely lady and a project that just fitted into Helping Elsewhere’s portfolio…

We immediately made a grant to augment the teacher’s salaries (so, like Mandrem, there was no need for them to get ‘proper’ teaching jobs on marriage etc) and to add to their ‘Corpus Fund’ (this fund will ultimately provide a self-sustaining income to run the school).

We are obviously in this for the long haul, to run alongside things that need doing in Goa, Karnataka and Rajasthan.

So… the next target: to provide books for Satoli. We are estimating that we need to start with £500 to get another series of Oxford Reading Tree books – how about some of you lovely supporters running, say, a coffee morning? Maybe we can supply some of our lovely sparkly things to spice things up?

We’ve proved the value of these books at Mandrem. And not only with the kids – we caught our favourite Tandoor chef borrowing our reference set to teach himself English as well. We gave him an English-Hindi dictionary to help and he just got on with it!

Great to be back at the beginning of something so new again!


One Response to “Up in the Mountains…”

  1. Gina Ali Khan says, August 8th, 2014 at 00:36

    From the sunny beaches of Goa to a mountain village in one of India’s northern most states,Uttarakhand, … Helping Elsewhere is present. It gives me great pride to know that I’ve been with Helping Elsewhere from the beginnings of its journey . Thank you to Helen for Helping Elsewhere & to all the wonderful supporters who donate so generously. .. from my heart to yours with love & gratitude for your time and generosity.

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