Wandering: Adopt A Village
This was a wonderful trip to Dhablepuri. Despite the fact that the monsoon was late and the whole area is in the grip of a terrible drought.The kids looked great and there were definite signs of progress. We visited with Wayne and Vicki, directors of A Touch of Love Foundation who run the project for us and Dr Bande who runs the free medical clinics. Wayne made a special trip to India during the long dry summer to save the trees. Tankers of water were brought in. The watering and mulching task is hard physical labour, Wayne took an active part in this. The copper coloured leaves are new growth.We are hoping to harvest the first crop of mangoes next year. The custard apple trees are also thriving. We were surprised and excited to see how well the trees are growing as the drought has been the worst in 36 years.The kids had just received new school uniforms. Wayne and Vicki play fun bonding games with them, throwing soft rubber balls around the classroom, turning these often sombre little people into lively kids. Blackboard games test their progress and participation is rewarded with a sweet. The children are fed khichri (a blend of rice and lentils).They are fed early in the day to ensure they are nourished and able to concentrate in school.The cooking facilities are simple but effective and the cook is warm and cheerful.As always, we took them fruit (mangoes and bananas). Things are moving along in Dhablepuri. Our thoughts are turning to dance and music programs. And we have agreed to buy them a computer and set it up for the kids to use.So exciting - first step to a way out of poverty for this deprived community. The money for this computer project has been provided by our wonderful staff and customers who raised it by sales of the vintage silk sari bags during the Valentine promotion. We are all joining hands to help this remote village and at last it is really starting to show. So good!!