On Thursday the 17th of October, a festival marking the beginning of the auspicious month of Kartik took place during the morning time on the main stage at SMS and it was attended mostly by school children, staff members, volunteers and invited guests. Local newspaper journalists were present to document the event by taking photos and writing their impressions.
It was a cultural presentation based on a variety of plays and performances which managed to both entertain and inspire the young audience present.
Some of the plays were based on Krishna’s pastimes which elicited much laughter and emotion, devotional songs and dancing all in the spirit of the Kartik season and very much based on the local customs.
A martial art performance by the students of Gyan Prakash, where the kids showed their fighting and defensive skills with a few somersaults in between and two dance performances in both Egyptian and Russian gipsy style were amongst the highlights of the festival, while an Odissi dance performance in honour of Lord Jagannath and another of a more local Vrajabhasi type concluded the event which lasted approximately one and a half hour.
A sumptuous feast of rice, subji, puri and boondi was served to everyone and once the children left the school holiday started.
We are pleased to share with you that the Trek to Stok Kangri was a great success. Out of 20 trekkers, 12 made it to base camp at 5,100 meter and 8 made it to the summit. It was really difficult, they began the climb at 12 in the night and reached the summit at 8:30 am, the temperature was minus 8 degrees and less.
It was also really difficult to come back down to the base camp. After one more night at the base camp they made it to Leh and next morning travelled to Delhi and Agra where they visited the Taj Mahal and had a very long hot shower.
The next morning the trekkers visited the school they have been collecting for and enjoyed serving the children feast with gifts. The kids welcomed the trekkers and presented a lot of beautiful dances on their arrival. The trekkers are now back home in the UK. Thanks to all those who participated and to their families for allowing them to take leave for so long.
A total of 80.000 US$ was raised and more is trickling in. This was made possible only by these 21 brave souls and hundreds of helping hands like you all who donated generously for this cause. You can still spread the word and send in your contribution at http://www.fflvrindavan.org/en/donate.html , https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/rupa OR http://www.youcaring.com/nonprofits/trek-challenge-for-a-new-school/71318
You will be glad to know that Rupa and his trek mates have reached the base camp which is at 5000 meters from the sea level.They are all set to their summit attempt which starts tonight. Please send in your prayers for their success. Please share this with your friends and you can send in your donations at Donate here(USA) OR Donate here (UK).
Please send in your contributions and make this trek a success. The money raised will go towards building the third Sandipani Muni school in Vrindavan.
Below are some latest pictures from the base camp. Smilingly they are continuing this enormous task only to bring smiles to the unprivileged girls of Vrindavan.
A group of 21 individuals from United Kingdom started to trek Stok Kangri (Leh Ladhak) today. They aim to reach the summit at 6,150 meters on 17th of September. Here are some latest photos of the trek from today:
For those of you who do not know, they are doing this on their own expense to raise funds for Food for Life Vrindavan Society (FFLV), the raised amount would go for the construction of the third wing of Sandipani Muni School in Vrindavan.
The group aims to raise 50,000 pounds/80,000 USD or more to enable FFLV to continue with the construction of a school building. FFLV aims to provide absolutely free qualitative education to street children. You can send in your good wishes, tell your friends and also send help by visiting our donation page: Donate Here
The trek finishes on the 19th September.
Rupa Raghunath (Pietro Paolinelli), the founder of FFLV is also trekking with the group. Here is what he said before leaving, ‘I chose to be a part of this trek because every step up there brings one more brick on the school construction’s wall, It is a tough challenge but it is rewarding to know that the group is raising funds to help and support more than five hundred girls living in villages nearby Vrindavan to get education which still remains inaccessible to them’.
The bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi had come to a press conference organized on the 7th of September, 2013 in Delhi. To enthuse the trekkers Vivek said, ‘Everyone says that I am a hero but I believe that people like Rupa and those supporting this cause are the heros in real sense.’
On the 8th of September, 2013, 5 girls from our school got selected in the first round of auditions of a reality show Super Dancing Stars that will be broadcasted on Disha TV. The children were preparing for this from a long time and this success gave them so much confidence. Our girls performed Bharatnatyam, Kathak and contemporary dances which were all really appreciated by the Judges. 5 out of 6 girls were selected and asked to appear for the 2nd round. The girls however, choose not to appear for the round because it was late in the night and they had a test in school next morning(They were being asked to stay back entire night). We agreed with the girls decision as there were not adequate arrangements from the audition team in terms of the comfort of kids.