On the path to recovery
The pile of rubble lies before us – just a mound of bricks, mortar, wood, and other materials. This pile is similar to several mounds of demolished buildings around us. This is the aftermath of the devastating earthquake that shook Nepal on 25th April 2015. More than 8,000 people perished and hundreds of thousands were rendered homeless in the calamity.
Entire villages have been flattened, and people are still picking up the pieces of their shattered lives. Their worlds have been turned upside down. Some of the most devastating sights that greet our eyes are the remains of schools. Schools that were second homes to children. Schools that imparted knowledge to these children. It may take a while before these schools are rebuilt. The children at Parikrma Humanity Foundation, Bangalore, have pledged to rebuild the 27 year old government-funded Shree Shilakanya Devi Lower Secondary School in Lachyang, Phatpur, Nuwakot, close to the base camp of the Mount Everest trek, and send their friends across the border back to school. The children from this school in Nepal are currently attending classes in makeshift classrooms, housed in tents.
“We want to give them their school back”
Parikrma Humanity Foundation strives to provide education to the most marginalised children in the society. It runs four schools which educate over 1500 children from 69 slum communities and four orphanages in Bangalore. The Foundation provides innovative learning techniques to its students, enabling them to become well-rounded individuals. When news of the earthquake in Nepal reached the children at Parikrma, they decided on their own to reach out. The children have set up a “Heart for Nepal” box in each of the four schools, in which they contribute as much as they can. Gagan Narayanswamy, a student of Standard V at Parikrma Centre for Learning, Sahakarnagar, says, “I collected Rs. 34 by walking to school instead of taking the bus. My friends have given up eating egg in their meals at school and our teachers have given up tea and coffee, so that all of us can pool in our money and send it to Nepal. I love my school and feel bad that the children of Nepal have lost their school. All of us want to give them their school back.”
Shukla Bose, CEO and Founder of Parikrma, says “At Parikrma, for the last 12 years, we have taught our children skills to live life on equal terms as those in the mainstream. That is why we have been able to transform slum children into engineers, doctors, lawyers, and entrepreneurs. But what I am most happy about is that we have also been able to instill the spirit of compassion and caring for others. That is why when our little children started saving bus money, and notebooks,
to send to the children of Nepal, I felt that we needed to do something. The Parikrma children who themselves possess so little have taught us that you can be compassionate even if you are poor.”
A concert for a cause
Driven by the small but incredibly meaningful gestures of these children, Parikrma is conducting a concert to raise more funds for rebuilding the school in Nepal. The concert, named “Spirit of Sacrifice”, will see renowned Sufi singer, Kavita Seth, perform soul-stirring melodies at Chowdiah Memorial Hall, Bangalore, on Saturday, July 11th 2015. She says, “Music has great power and as an artist, I feel blessed to use my music for the society. It is indeed an honour and I consider it my responsibility to help people who have suffered great losses mentally and otherwise in Nepal.”
With this concert, Parikrma hopes to raise the Rs. 20 lakhs required to rebuild the school for its 360 students, with the help of benefactors like you. Parikrma has also set up a campaign on Milaap to further aid in collecting the required funds.
The school is located at the base of the Mount Everest trek, a remote location; hence, aid doesn't reach the survivors of the earthquake easily. Parikrma realises that it needs help in rebuilding the school and has partnered with Ani Foundation in Nepal for help. With a bit of help from you, the children of Shree Shilakanya Devi Lower Secondary School will be able to go back to school, and continue receiving the education they deserve.