I would like to introduce you to one existing student and one new student of our school today: Varsha, ten years old, and Kajal, seven years old.
Varsha’s father makes malas and other devotional items which he sells on a small stand by the side of the road. It is a business that depends very much on religious holidays, the amount of pilgrims that come to the town and his luck of being at the right place at the right time. We know that this profession does not make you wealthy but asking his wife for an approximate amount of how much her husband earns did not bring any result: she just didn’t know. She has nothing to do with money. She is just at home and takes care of the children.
Their home is one room of a house in which Varsha’s father and his three brothers live, all with their families. This means that the house, although spacy, gets crowded when everyone is at home. Each of the families has one room and they earn, cook and eat separately. While this shows us that the Indian tradition of a joint family is slowly vanishing, we are treated upon entrance with the endearing picture of a mother showering her already thirteen-year-old.
The funny thing is that Varsha has last year passed the Upper Kindergarten, the second pre-school class of our school while Kajal was in the second class of a cheap private school nearby. In this school year however, Kajal started from beginning again, in our pre-school class. Why? Because she has spent years in her previous school without really learning much. In just two years with us, Varsha has learned so much that the parents have made sure to be among the first at the admissions for this school year, so that their little girl gets a place at our school, too.
They are everything else but wealthy and that’s how only their eldest child and only son is studying at a private school with a little bit better standard. Both girls were frequenting a private school but with the family’s low income, they went to a cheap school. It was still a burden on their budget and when they heard of our school, they first admitted Varsha. Now at our school, both girls will get an even better education than their son and we hope that this will make them turn their life in a different, better direction.