Children in the yard and on the rooftop, with their teachers, their families and their American friends! We celebrated the girls’ dormitory, the older students’ English and the oldest students’ dreams; but it’s the youngest children who are the heralds of a new generation.
THANKS TO EACH OF YOU, by the time the kindergarteners in the bottom row make it to grade 12, a high school education won’t be the exception, it will be the norm.
As you travel the roadways in India, the road signs bid you a “Happy Journey!” And did we ever have a happy journey! From the freeway, I spotted the high school building and thought, “That can’t be our school!” But if I had any doubts about our growth, the rows and rows…and rows of smiling faces waiting to greet us drove the message home.
A large metal door that once marked the end of the campus and led to the beloved Mill Valley field, is now the gateway to the future–the brand new three-story girls’ dorm and the mammoth high school fill most of the space, but there is still more fertile ground waiting to be filled with possibilities.
If the grounds are expansive, the children themselves seem to have grown more spacious. They proudly try out their English wishing us good morning, announcing “my name is…” and even breaking our hearts by saying, “I am sad you are going.” They don’t just tell us they want to be doctors and teachers and engineers, they tell us about how they will save money and feed those who are hungry.
We watched them learn geometry, do their laundry, and wield scary looking tools to cut and clean pumpkins–without complaining or slowing down. They work hard at school and take on their “jobs list” as a way to show care for one another. Their solidarity still stands out as the biggest difference between our culture and theirs. And it is us, the privileged of the first-world, who seem desperately in need of learning.
Their confidence, competence and incredible resilience–is the hope that we’ve been talking about. They are regularly told and often speak of how much we love them–we–that’s all of YOU! They know that there are people half way around the world who are providing for them and believe they can do this school thing–and now they believe it too!
Thank you for believing in Tribe Rising’s vision. Thanks to your support, hearts and minds are growing. And the margins are shrinking. With your help, we’re making room for everyone to thrive and prosper… one hopeful student at a time.
With gratitude, Annette