In a country where it is common for homeless children to be left to survive on their own, the St. Xavier’s School now provides housing and food for 28 children. The school provides education for these and some children who’re living in nearby places. The school now teaches a total of 56 children from the ages of 4 until 14.
I am also taking care of the finances of 86 students who have passed out of the school for their further education. These students are studying in Pelling, Gangtok, Geyzing, Siliguri and Darjeeling at the moment.
Maintaining the funds to give the children education and three meals a day is really challenging, since there are no funds given by the government. A lot of the children in the school are orphans or coming from underprivileged background and thus cannot pay any money to the school.
Until now since 1998, there’s already a lot of children who received the help from the school, and are now able to go to high school and develop themselves as much as possible and build a career.
The school has the ability to help children with no parents, or parents who are not capable of taking care of them. Without this school they would be on the streets, doing labor work or begging, with no chance at education ever in their lives.
At the moment the most important thing is to make the school safer, more suitable and one that focuses on the all round development of the children attending.
The first step is to raise adequate funds for -
1. Nutritional food for the children
Monthly expenditure - INR 18,720
Yearly expenditure - INR 4,78,640
2. Teaching and non-teaching staff -
11 teachers + 1 helping staff for nursery
2 non-teaching staff - Cook and hostel caretaker
Yearly expenditure - INR 6,54,000
Currently, due to less salaries and the remote location, we only have 5 permanent teachers and one non-teaching staff who are working on very minimal salaries.
3. Hostel facilities -
Beds, blankets, mattresses, heater.
We would like to have 6 more double-beds in the hostel. Currently, two students share a bed and it gets difficult to curb spreading of diseases when there are less options for the sick students to sleep elsewhere.
Also, there are 36+ children from underprivileged background who are willing to join the hostel and school. Their caretakers have been requesting me to admit them but due to the financial and subsequent logistical restrictions it is not possible to give them admissions.
Adding more beds will help us add more students accordingly.
Here's a quick breakdown of the hostel expenditure -
Beds - INR 42000
Heater - INR 9000
Blankets, Bed-sheets, Mattresses - INR 22500
Total - INR 73,500
These are the primary and urgent requirements we hope to address.
Apart from these urgent requirements, we are also willing to improve the following at the school -
1. Better books and stationary
(INR 150000 yearly)
2. Daily usage items - toothpaste, soaps, detergents, etc.
(INR 40,500 yearly)
3. Sports equipment and leveling the school ground
(INR 70,000 one time investment)
4. Kitchen requirements - more utensils, cylinders, water purifiers, etc.
5. Better water management - This part of the mountains experiences acute water supply problem and hence a better pipe setup is required. The students can take bath only once or twice a week due to this problem and better water supply will also mean better hygiene.
6. Transportation for medical requirements and that for students from poor families coming from a far distance.
7. Organic farm maintenance - Keeping up with the tradition of Sikkim's organic farming initiative we have a small farm that provides us with maze and some vegetables for the students. We also have two cows and their butter is a great nutritional addition to the children's diet.
8. Science laboratory - every good school has a science laboratory and it is my dream that we get sufficient enough in other aspects to also one day to have our own science laboratory.
9. Passed out students
- I am also helping some of the passed out students who have gone for higher studies with financial aid to continue their education. This adds more responsibility to not only educate them till std 8th but also nurture them for getting good educational degrees so that they can secure a self-sufficient life.
As you can notice, our fund requirements are way above the goal mentioned here as we intend to be realistic with this crowdfunding campaign. If we get your heartfelt support we will be able to meet the most important and urgent needs.
To give these children all they need and deserve, unfortunately we need more than just willpower. To be able to keep accepting children to the school and the hostel there’s money needed. All donations, small or big, will directly affect the lives and the futures of St. Xavier's children.