In Pushkar, India, I met Trine Obel, a 21 years old girl from Denmark who built up a school to provide education to 15 children of a gipsy community.
After having a tea in a small shop, she took me to see the cruel reality that affects more than 300 people who belong to the same gipsy community. Most of them endure inhuman life conditions. The community lives on an empty land surrounded by garbage without public services or facilities.
“Life is hard here. I wake up every morning at four o’clock to collect plastic bottles. I go to the market at that time since police does not allow us to walk on the main tourist area during the day. For a workday I make around 200R (3,19USD). I have children and a family to feed. I do not even have access to a bank to borrow some money and start my own business” A woman confessed to me.
Trine was shocked by the situation and decided, along with Jeetu, a young man who belongs to the gipsy community, to build a school for these children. After constructing a small house, they pay every month a teacher to give class to 15 children. Three children from the gipsy community are attending private schools thanks to the financial support offered by some foreigners. The rest of the children go to Trine’s school.
It is not difficult to understand why this project started: children usually are on the streets begging for money. Others have to work and do what the elders ask them to do. Most of the children still live with poor hygienic and have grown under difficult conditions. There are no opportunities for a change in their life and development. Trine’s school give the chance to learn from the basic. Numbers, letters, writing on paper, using a pen and practising the Hindi alphabet. In other words, it offers a chance to break free of ignorance and poverty that characterises the life of those communities for entire generations.
The school is 5 minutes from the main stadium of the city where the camp also is based. In the mornings Trine buys some food for the kids: vegetables, rice and chapatti. There is not too much money, so every cent has to be carefully spent. Children come back to their homes after having lunch and start running up and down the streets of Pushkar looking for money.
The school always welcomes volunteers! It is a small project with a huge real impact though. For this reason they need people who can advise them to take this project to a second level. The goal is to build up an NGO that can offer education to poor children in Pushkar in a larger scale.
Books, pens, and pedagogic material are needed and donations welcome!
If you are interested and would like to have more information, please visit “Pushkar Project” on Facebook.
Written by Andy VC
“Made in the Earth!”