Batlagundu - The New Boarding! - and to give it it's proper name - Savugampatti                                                                                                                                                                                                                  A brand new project!  All we know so far, is that my friend Igna is in charge and there are 50 children.  Igna sent some photos so that we could see the children.  We can also see that they already have school uniforms and books.  In the photo the children are meditating - yoga is one of their school subjects.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    This project has already been adopted by Boughton Primary School.  They have collected lots of pennies and used them to make this map of India, with the star showing where Batlagundu is.                                                                                                                                                                                       How much did you raise? - £218.22!!!                                                                                                        Plus the children made this huge poster for me to take, which everyone has signed.                                                                                                     Boughton School has a very unusual circular hall, which has the most fantastic mural going around it.  There happens to be a piece of the mural left - which I am taking to India and will put up in the Boarding.                                                                                                       So. . . . . . .  first of all, I found out that the new Boarding is not in the Batlagundu campus, but it is only a short distance away.  Here is a photo.  As you can see, it is still being built.  They expect to finish it next March.                                                                                   We went to have a closer  look.  There was a big digger, moving the soil, but all of the other tools being used were very basic.  The ladies were carrying the bricks on their heads and mixing the concrete by hand.  When finished, they will have 200 children there; 50 boys from year 1 to year 5 and 150 girls from year 1 through to 'A' level students.                                                                                                                           The children did a little performance for us - singing and dancing.  It was very good.  I learnt a little about some of the children; some have had quite difficult lives.  At the moment the children are staying in a nearby building.  As well as Sr. Igna, they have a warden and a lady who cooks for them.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The piece of mural will be kept safely until the Boarding is finished and it will then be put up in the hall.                                                                                                                  Everyone thought that the poster you had made was 'Super!'                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              So they have made one for you!  I had taken some paper and crayons and so we tore the paper up into rectangles and all of the children drew a picture and signed their names (both in Tamil and English, if they were able to.)    When I get back, I will stick them all to a big piece of paper with a photo of the Boarding in the centre for you.                                 


Here are some of the girls dancing:- 


Some of the children here have very sad stories to tell.  The little girl in pink on the left was found alone in a nearby town. She had been abandoned.  However, she is very happy here and has made lots of friends.  She is very clever and a very good artist.  She drew a beautiful picture of a peacock, which will be on the poster the children have made for you, Boughton School.  The tall girl in the middle in blue, I met five years ago when she was at Karisalpatti.  She is also doing very well.

We will now call this project by it's correct name - it's at Savugampatti.  It is very near to Batlagundu - the buildings you can see behind the new building are in Batlagundu.  







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