|Would you like to do something different this year? Why not come and help out at the small orphanage run by Didi Gaotami, a very remarkable woman. Do something for the underprivileged in Jaipur in the heart of Rajasthan.|
Currently home to 25 orphans, this project really has an incredible history. It is the story of one woman’s struggle against all odds to do something for the underprivileged.
This project started in 2005 as a piece of land with a tiny tin shed, 8 orphans and Didi, a yoga nun. When Didi left the orphanage and school she had been running to strike out on her own, she was only assisted by a single volunteer, who had helped her buy a piece of land for the new project. Eight of the orphans from the original home decided to go with her to live in the tin shed with no water and no toilet. In the space of only 4 years, the building was transformed into a two-storey building with marble flooring, thanks to the courage and determination of Didi.
Who can volunteer
We prefer female volunteers. You must have a good moral character and respect the local culture.
When you come to stay with us, you join our family for the time you are there, sharing our joys and sorrows, learning from our culture and teaching us about yours. And most of all, you will gain a place in our hearts...when you leave, our children will never forget you and will request you to come back again and again.
What to expect
Now that the construction of the two lower floors is complete, and Didi has started the construction of another two floors upstairs, so she can move the orphans up there and also keep paying hostel children there and hopefully gradually make the project completely self sufficient for all its needs. We would like our volunteers to help with fundraising for this huge task, as well as teach the children spoken English.
In India rote learning is the norm and hundreds of bored pupils stream out of schools every day, burdened with books and with hours of homework ahead of them.
Many also spend a lot of money on tutors in an effort to make up for the defects in the teaching system. As we cannot afford tutors for our orphans, we would like you to help us teach the children their other subjects as and when they need help.
We would love it if you teach them songs, games, dance, sports, drama or share with them any other skills you have. If you wish, you can learn to cook Indian style and help out in the kitchen when you are free or take the children out on an occasional excursion...they would love that!
What is most remarkable about Didi is that she is severely handicapped.
She has a very painful form of rheumatoid arthritis and cannot even stand up without assistance. Yet in spite of her handicap, she is cheerful and loves the children as their own mother, taking pride in all their small achievements. Yet it is very difficult for her to manage alone. She desperately needs a volunteer to help her with the
Malati is originally from England, but has been working in India for over 15 years, learning about the culture, the languages and about the people. Ten years ago she started a programme to help provide infrastructure to struggling village schools and has since arranged funds for many schools to help them to become self-sufficient.
The orphanage has a medium sized room where a volunteer can stay. The electric supply is good.
There is running water in the bathroom.
Volunteers will receive training in Indian style bathing!
You will be provided with vegetarian food but can eat other food
outside the compound.
Accommodation & Food cost
First month Rs.20,000 (approx Eur 300 / USD 400)
Subsequent months Rs.6.000 (approx Eur 100)
The orphanage is situated in a newly constructed housing colony in a green area of Jaipur. Jaipur, also known as the pink city due to the pink rock from which its walls are built, is a popular tourist centre in Rajasthan. It is famous for its cloth and silver markets, as well as for its beautiful temples and castles which are still inhabited by rajas. Although the town is prosperous, there are plenty of slum areas and pockets of need.
Just recently our project opened an embroidery class for local poor women and already has a regular attendance of 25 women.
Right now we only need a volunteer to help take care of the children, but in the future we will also start a slum school and will ask our volunteer to help with that too.
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