Sunday, January 31, 2010

January 2010

Our dear Friends, I hope all is well on your side of the world. We all do very fine and hope the same with you, the new year brought friends, nice greeting cards, new opportunities and we hope it will be a blessed year ahead for all. Mumy and Grand ma are fine, Mukta is managing the guest house very well, Pintu and Bunty are the two Managers who are just amazing help to the guest house and also assist me with almost everything. We have given them a pet name, we call them our Mr. Needle -Plane, they can manage almost everything from a needle to a plane
(our friend Nigama gave this name to some friend in Gujarat and i like these words very much and use them for our Managers) .
We are trying to change school from Ayush, it is soo difficult to enroll his name in a private school, the standards of the government school is not upto the mark, We are using all kind of references etc but just too difficult, lots of options available out there and we are trying around.
I would like to share some pictures which will also tell a story. I hope you enjoy the pictures.

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2nd January 2010, Movie with the Jodhpur project Team and Participants, we saw the Movie Three Idiots!
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Medical camp on 2nd January 2010 in Setarwa, we found 95 % of women suffering from Anemia in this camp and made a follow up camp on the 21st of January.
Dr.Usha Bhargawa checking out eldest Patient.
Both the Sheerni Project field workers behind the doctor. In red Ms. Bhagwati Sharma and in Pink Ms. Leela Gupta
Our Sheerni project administrator Ms. Manju Mehta explaining records of Self help groups to our field worker Ms. Bhagwati.
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Friends visiting from Switzerland, Our Dear Nigama, Emil, Rahel and Natalie on 7th of January, we thought of preparing some meal while sitting and chatting on our roof top.
Mrs. Margret Nobs, teaching my friend Virendra dancing.

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My friends visiting Payal Sewing center, our participants performing local dance
Teacher at Payal Sewing center

Guest from Switzerland singing and dancing with our participants in Jodhpur at the Empowerment project of Dalit women and girls

Virendra and Myself were invited by our friends for two days trip to Jaislmer, picture enroute Jaislmer.
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13th of January, My soul grand mother turned 72 in Jodhpur, Mrs. Margret Nobs from Switzerland. Celebrating birthday at On The Rocks Resturant


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Guest visiting Jodhpur Project from Dragmoan group on 23rd January, we play sports together, have lunch and introduce our work and projects we operate.

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Medical Camp in Setrawa in collaboration with Raj Dadiji Veerni project, about 100 women and girls got their check up and received free medicine from us.
Nutritionist Dr. Rashmi Rathore, Physician Dr. Usha Bhargawa, 2 Female Nurses participated with our team and volunteers.




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Guest visit at Setrawa project, on the 29th of January Ms. Nidhi Dabral, General manager of Peirce and Leslie tour company.

29th January, Setrawa Project, i took some pictures of our participants in class 1100am till 1.00pm

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Every alternate Saturday of the month, all the projects running in Jodhpur will get together at the head office based at Durag Niwas and we will have teachers, volunteers and administration meeting of Jodhpur team.Celebrating birthday of Two participants, Monica and Tina


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Volunteers reports!!

Franziska Schmidt

From: Berlin, Germany

Volunteering time: January – March 2010

When I decided to come to India and work almost three moths as a Volunteer for Sambhali Trust I had no idea what might expect me.

When I finally arrived in Jodhpur and in the Durag Niwas Guest House, I was impressed by the beauty of this place and the kindness of the people living there. Because my arrival date was the 10th January, a Sunday, the girls weren’t in the house but Govind and his wife Mukta welcomed me very warmly.

After a short time to relax, Govind shows me the house, the classrooms and explained me the Sambhali Trust Projects in Jodhpur and Setrawa.

In the evening I meet Margrit, a volunteer from switzerland, teaching knetting. She and everyone in the house made me feel very welcome.

The day after I meet the girls the first time. A lot of smiling and laughing faces, a lot of foreign names I thought I could never memorise. On the next day I started teaching English,

by doing it I’m learning, because I never teached English before. But working with the girls is a real pleasure, and actually lots of fun.

The first week was affected by a first insight into a – for me – foreign culture, by collecting experiences as a English teacher and research, that communication can work without a common language.

I learned the names of the girls and with every following day I found out more about their lives, which is so different to mine. It is often filled with violence, the experience of disrespect and oppression, but also full of hope to improve their situation with the help of Sambhali Trust which offers them the chance to learn, to laugh and to develop into selfconfident woman.

Since these first days we talk, laugh and learn together from monday to saturday, they are so cute, lively, curious and smart girls and their smile makes me feel happy every day.


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Name: Natalie Merringer

Age: 25 years old

Living: Amsterdam, Holland. Volunteering time: 1 month

Reflecting on one week of volunteering at Sambhali Trust… where to begin?

Last week when I arrived in Jodhpur I was planning on only staying for two days. On my second day I decided to stay for one month and volunteer as an English teacher. This was a rather spontaneous decision, but it felt so right. I spent only two hours with the girls of the project and it was on a Saturday, the girls spend this day on playing games and sports.

The arts and crafts teacher said to me, “give us one hour and you will want to stay with us”, well she was right. The atmosphere and the positive energy in this group of young women was delightful. If I can help these women with teaching basic English it would give me a chance of learning a bit of their culture and I would maybe get a small peek of their lives.

Two volunteers where already at work, one in teaching English and the other in teaching knitting. I would be the second English teacher and would first be as assistant to see what my role will be. During my first class I just couldn’t keep still and jumped into it and just swam! The girls are so willing to learn English, with their notebooks on their laps and their pencils in their hand, sitting on the ground in a lotus, looking at me so eager to hear me speak… Teaching is a profession, this I have noticed after the first day. I was very tired and really did not have any clue on how to structure the lesson. Especially because all the girls are on different levels and I would like to have all of them participate. But after some brainstorming we came to the result of a structure for the class, where we do one day a workshop about an important subject and the rest of the week we will teach conversation, grammar and reading. The days begin at 11:30 in the classrooms above the guesthouse and at 15:00 the English class takes place at Payal’s sewing center, which is 10 minutes from the guesthouse. I teach the beginners, which is actually a big challenge, not knowing where to begin and how fast to go… The women here are a bit older and I noticed they haven’t been to school in a long time. Some of them had difficulties with holding a pencil and others where so shy to speak that with just a smile they could say enough. We started with ABC’s, 123 and “how are you? I am fine”. The women where so happy that after every sentence they clapped! On the second day one of the ladies stood up and said the ABC’s all by herself, it was amazing to see and when we all clapped for her the tears arrived in her eyes. This was one of the many beautiful moments I have experienced with Sambhali Trust.

I am grateful for staying at the Durag Niwas Guesthouse. It is such a beautiful and warm place, it makes my stay pleasant and peaceful.


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I hope you enjoy the little films where we filmed some singing by our participants with our guest!


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