Monday, 6 July 2015

Week 1: Fail to Prepare = Prepare to… Be Flexible!

I have learnt a number of lessons from my trip to India so far:
  •         Don’t bring 40kg of luggage/baggage
  •         Don’t rely on the kindness of airport staff to turn a blind eye towards an excessive weight allowance
  •          Don’t leave a sharp vegetable knife in rucksack
  •          Don’t make the airport announce for you to board the plane because you were busy telling your family about the knife incident
  •          Don’t let an Indian taxi driver drop you off in a rough location near the destination at night
  •          Don’t get on the back of a motorbike with 40kg of luggage/baggage
  •          Don’t let the motorcyclist drop you at the wrong location and then drive off
  •          DO bump into friendly American travellers who are happy to take you to the hostel and carry your bags

That was all before I arrived!

Since then, I’ve been on an orientation week in Pune with a fun group of interns (Mark, Carlo, Christina, Becky, Isabelle and Selina) and Intern Coordinator (Megan). We travelled by train for 3 hours to reach Pune, going through some amazing forests with waterfalls in the distance.

Our orientation week involved loads of different activities. We were staying at a hostel for volunteers with Deep Griha Society, which is an incredible organization running a wide range of projects in the local area. One day we visited the office of a local charity called Equal Community Foundation, which seeks to challenge gender stereotypes by running educational programmes and employing local men to mentor teenage boys.  
It was such a privilege to meet them and helped to remind me why I love development.We also visited a school for blind children, which had limited resources but was building a new school with vastly improved facilities.

During our free time we went to a few different places: the market, a temple, a church and Jazz Café, which had a live band with a particularly funky pianist. Today I am leaving to start my placement in an orphanage, which will involve teaching English, playing sports and providing tuition, so I'm really looking forward to getting started!

City Streets in Pune

Praise Points
·         I thank God for arriving safely, even though the journey was a bit crazy!
·         There are so many incredible sights in India, from the tranquil forests to the chaotic markets
·         There is a general sense of altruism across towns and cities
·         The majority of Indians are able to practice acts of worship without facing discrimination or hostility from others
·         The rate of extreme poverty is gradually declining

Prayer Points
·     I pray that communities across the region will be resilient to possible flooding during the monsoon season
·     There’s a lack of social support for the poorest in society, who are far more likely to experience malnutrition and poor sanitation

·      The spread of HIV/AIDS is a major concern in India as well as in neighbouring countries


  1. good to hear your news! Many blessings to you and the people you reach out to xxx

  2. good to hear your news! Many blessings to you and the people you reach out to xxx

  3. So glad you and your luggage arrived safely! Praying you settle in quickly at the orphanage and discover all God has for you there.