Today you will get to know two more girls of our school: Janki and Shashi. They are fourteen and twelve years old and live together with their sister, brother and parents in one rented room in walking distance of the school.
We walked a part of Janki and Shashi’s way home from school with them and noticed already that it is getting quite hot these days. When entering their home, however, relief is only short: after coming into a covered entry hall, we turn to a set of stairs, walk up and stand in front of their room, again in the blazing sun. They invite us in and so we are sitting, in the end, six of us crammed into the one room that the family of six is renting. Their bedroom, living room, kitchen and kid’s room all in one. There is a hand pump in the entry hall for getting water and washing themselves. For going to toilet, they have to go out in the fields.
The monthly rent for this room is about 16 US-Dollars, a fifth of Shashi’s father’s income. He is from Vrindavan and a simple worker. He was driving rickshaws before but is now working has a gatekeeper in Vrindavan’s main temple. Shashi’s elder brother is 18 years old and is learning work as a painter. He sometimes earns a little money but not much to speak of.
That’s how, when five years ago the mother of another child of our school told them about the possibility to send their three girls to us, they happily took it. The girls started learning at our school. Both Janki and Shashi stayed but Krishna, their now thirteen-year-old sister stopped coming after a few weeks already, saying she didn’t want to learn anymore. They tried sending her to another school, which is why we didn’t insist on her coming to us. Now however we got to know that she did not go to school anymore at all! So we convinced her to come back to ours again in the next year!
Both girls are jolly and outspoken, have friends in their classes and enjoy coming to school. They are average students – but they are more than average for us. Just like every child in our school, they have a story, a family and a background. They are individuals and we love each of them, enjoying to see them grow up and learn more and more!