Transforming an Entire Slum!
My team and I recently returned from India and we had an awesome time! Within weeks of the same time, a team from a church in California was there as well. We both visited this particular slum in South India where some friends from South Africa, are serving. The NGO (non-government organization) will be involved in moving the entire slum to a new location. The NGO hopes to establish a multi-purpose building there which will likely become a medical clinic, tailoring school, and the beginnings of a Dalit Education Center for the children. Frank, from the California church, sent this link of video footage they shot there. Take a look at this exciting video.
Livin' in a Drain Pipe
Some Indian families who have found themselves hopelessly in debt to money lenders are assigned to work off their debt at a pipe factory. Earning about $1.75 per day (before paying 1/2 to the money-lender, families are stuck serving as "bonded laborers" in a never-ending situation.
This area is called the "Pipe Village" since there are so many people living in these broken and discarded sewer pipes.
I attended a graduation service where a young lady who had been raised in one of these sewer pipe homes was of to study medicine. Hoping to become a doctor and care for her family and others in need.
Back from India and Forever Impacted!
On my first trip to India and I was ready to be totally overwhelmed by the sights, sounds, and smells. But I was so fascinated by the work and mission of the teams we visited that nothing distracted me. Yes, there were strange foods. After eating various varieties of curry chicken for several days, we stopped at a Pizza Hut at the airport and got a "supreme pizza." You guessed it: the meat was chicken, and the sauce (can you believe it) was curry! Another twist - no beef at McDonalds which makes sense, in that cows are sacred to the Hindus. (I took this picture of the menu at the McDonalds.)
From Illiterate to High School Graduate
While in India, I had the privilege of seeing a Dalit Education Center at the very beginning with lower kindergarten students, and later to see the level 10 students graduate, ready to go on to college or face the job market. With the help of our organization and partners like yourself, these "Untouchables" have truly changed their destiny.
Although "legally" every child has certain rights to an education, generally it cannot happen without groups of interested NGOs standing in solidarity with these oppressed kids. If you would like to learn how to help some students, click here.