Did You Ever Think That So Little Could Do So Much?
Jasmin, a friend of TheExpeditioner.com, is throwing a small fundraiser tomorrow night here in the City of New York to help raise funds for a school in India her father helped found that is desperately in need of help. Given the recent economic turndown, the school has a very real chance of shutting down and turning away scores of deserving children who want nothing more than an opporutnity to learn.
I now turn it over to Jasmin. I’ll be over here on my couch watching Season 4 of “No Reservations.”
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My father built the school in 2005 on his old family property in Kaimganj (North India, state of Uttar Pradesh). Initially there were only 60 students. Today there are 285, with 60 new children who just started school this July.
The school, named Hakim Abdul Hayy Welfare Society, is free and offers real “slum dwellers” a unique opportunity for education. This is the only school of its kind available to kids who hail from families living on less than 70 cents a day. We also provide food in order to keep the children in school because parents often want their kids to work rather than going to school to bring home some money. But knowing they’ll return home with a full stomach is an incentive for them to keep them there.
There are also 30 children who actually live on-site and are given shelter.
What’s special about the project is that both Hindu and Muslim children are educated together, and kids of both religion learn about each others’ beliefs in order to become not just educated but tolerant.
This is exactly what arouses some fanatics in the neighborhood who are trying to shut down the school. One neighbor is claiming the property. We are working with a local lawyer on this case and I am getting some higher politicians involved.
The school is named after my grandfather. After my father’s passing earlier this year, I took on the project and created the Abdul Khan Foundation, named after both my father and my grandfather. The Abdul Khan Foundation is taking on the school project and has great aspirations to grow the school.
We are planning to build new classrooms after the monsoon this fall. We also would like to create a middle-school that specializes in skilled manual work. For talented kids, we want to offer stipends for futher education beyond middle school. Another big project we have planned is to set up a computer room. Literacy today entails also being able to work with a computer, and the internet offers access to a wealth of information those children would never have otherwise.
The school is funded completely through private donations. We are still looking to cover even the basic costs for the school year 2009/10, and with our plans ahead we need additional funding.
I am, therefore, really thankful for your support and for spreading the word!
I have a paypal account where people can donate , or you can donate directly to my Citibank account. I’ll provide Citibank details if someone is interested.
Great cause! Looking forward to the event tomorrow.
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