India Girls Home enjoys improvements; Hope Center slated to double space

Photo: Older girls from our India Girls Home are thrilled to soon have new bathroom facilities, which are due to be completed next month.

We are happy to report that we’re installing new bathroom facilities on the third level of our Girls Home. When construction is completed in December, there will be 10 separate toilets along with solar-powered hot water and a reverse osmosis purification system, thus aiding the girls’ privacy, comfort, and hygiene. The separate toilets will help the girls get to school on time since they won’t have to wait in line any longer. The older girls of the Girls Home have been enjoying their third level upstairs space with freshly painted walls and an abundance of sunlight that comes through the large windows. Now they are overjoyed to soon have new bathroom facilities on their own floor, such a comfort and a blessing.

Our gardening project on the ground level is going well — we are growing eggplant, tomatoes, green chilies, curry leaves, and beans. We expect a harvest of these crops at the end of this month — the harvests of organic vegetables from both the ground level gardens and the rooftop gardens are used in the children’s meals. We hired a nutritionist to plan out our menu for the children, and hired a new cook and assistant cook to help meet the requirements. The plan includes 3 square meals and an after-school snack. Preparing 288 meals and 96 snacks daily for all the children of the Girls Home and Boys Home, not to mention meals for our staff, is a daunting task, yet it is one that is pulled off deliciously.

11_2015IndiaPicFramePhoto inset: (Top-left): Girls from our India Girls Home can’t wait until construction is completed on their new restrooms. (Top-right): These girls are thankful for the fresh, organic vegetables in our garden which provide them nutritious meals. (Bottom-left): A girl from our Girls Home enjoys time in our ground level garden. (Bottom-right): These students are ready to study and receive a warm meal at our Children’s Hope Center.

In other good news, we are building a second level on to our Children’s Hope Center in Hyderabad, India. Previously we were using the existing ground floor and its two small rooms for a study hall and a computer lab. It’s been a bit crowded for the 40 children enrolled this year as we’ve been trying to use the same study hall for preparing and serving meals. The additional second level will become the study room which will give the children a more comfortable and peaceful environment to do their studies and excel in their education.

Through the work of The Children’s Hope Center, we are rescuing children from child labor which is one of the leading precursors to child trafficking in India. The model of the center is that of education assistance — a scholarship program and an after-school care program. We provide the children with everything they need to enroll in a local school: uniforms, shoes, backpacks, and school supplies. Then we pick them up from school, and our teacher and her assistant help them with their homework in a classroom setting at the Hope Center where they also have access to computer education. They leave each evening after eating a fresh-cooked meal with organic ingredients from our native-led farmland and garden projects. It’s in this environment that our Children’s Hope Center is bringing just that — hope, to the children of this slum colony located on the edge of the city’s largest landfill.

We are very thankful for your support and generous contributions from our donors which enabled us to build new levels on to both our Girls Home and the Children’s Hope Center. We look forward to reporting back with our progress in improving the lives of these children.

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