1 week to go!
East Tuddenham, UK
Its just 1 week to go until I leave for a whole year in India! This time next week I will be in Abu Dhabi airport waiting for my connecting flight to Hyderabad, which lands at 3:25am India time, where along with the other India volunteers I will be met by our Overseas Rep, Bharavi.
When we arrive we will spend a few days staying in a guesthouse in Hyderabad, where we will have a small induction course into indian life! And hopefully Bharavi's wife Sugathi will take all us girls shopping for sari's! Then me and my partner Katie will be leaving the other volunteers and travelling on to our specific Project.
Our school is called the Sri Chaitanya (Geetanjali) School and is situated in the small, rural village of Tangutur, about half an hour away from the town of Ongole, in Andhra Pradesh. Here Katie and I will be teaching English, maths and general knowledge in the Primary School, but may also get a chance to volunteer at the High School if we want to as well. Our classes will include nursery, lower and upper kindergarten and 1st class up to 5th class...so the age range will be 3-11 years old. After this the children move up to the High School.
We will be living in a small room in the Headmistress's house opposite the school. The facilities are very basic...however we do get the luxury of a western toilet and some form of shower which is a bonus! We will eat with our host family, which consists of Mr Ramana and his wife, as well as some children which eat here too and then sleep in the school. Whilst away I will hopefully learn to speak a bit of the local language Telugu as well!
The school itself is one of the most basic of projects that volunteers from Project Trust are sent to; the resourses there are very limited. A few of the classrooms have plastic chairs to sit on, but very few have any form of desks or tables and the children write on blackboards. The only teaching equipment I will have available to me is a blackboard at the front of the class, along with some textbooks which allow me to teach the state syllabus which the children follow. I am really looking forward to this challenge and am going to take plenty of reward stickers as well as coloured chalk, flashcards and small, simple games out with me.
I would like to say thank you to everyone who has supported me and helped me raise the £5,100 I needed to take this amazing opportunity and hopefully some of you can send me some letters whilst I'm gone (post takes about 10 days between India and England). If you do want to contact me you can write to me at:
Sri Chaitanya High School, Tangutur 523274, Prakasam District, Andhra Pradesh, India.
Or you can also email me at [email protected] or skype me (abi.collard) if I manage to get good enough internet and a webcam that is...which I have a feeling will be much more difficult than overcoming the 5.5 hours ahead India is.
However before I leave, first I need to pack the next year of my life into a rucksack weighing a maximum of 23kg...which I think is going to be very difficult! So just 1 week to go and I am definitely very scared right now! But definitely so excited too!