On Republic Day (January 26th) my brother Herbert – one of our main donors and visiting India the very first time – was a special guest of the school. He had the opportunity to hoist the flag and to distribute sweets to the students. We took photos of the students in their new school uniforms all stitched by two of our teachers, Raja Sekhar und Munemma!
My brother Herbert hoisting the flag of India
Teachers and students with their new school uniforms in front of the school
On January 12th the third Cultural Presentation of the Shanti Ananda School had taken place. In the presence of 15 special guests, for example the Mandal Education Officer (M.E.O) – who spoke very positively about the school in his speech – as well as the Surpanch (mayor) – and the Chief of the Police in Mudigubba, our students had the opportunity to prove their skills and talents. A big variety of dances, small theatre plays and songs inspired the auditorium. Before, speeches had been held, presents been given and the school uniforms had been distributed.
From l. to r.: Herbert, me, M. E. O., Gabriele, Klaus, Sheila, Surpanch
Saraswathi Dance (Saraswathi is the Goddess of Arts and of Education)
Rajesh, a student of the 3rd class, danced very nicely and received as a reward two bank notes: one 50 Rupee bank note and one 100 Rupee bank note were fixed at the reverse of his jacket. Immediately after the completion of the dance he ran to the headmaster and donated the 100 Rupees for our Shanti Ananda Society! Everybody was very fond of this behaviour which seems to be a very good example. I had mentioned in my initial speech that the school project now exists more than three years by donations only and that they are very necessary for the further existence of the school. I told the following story to the people as well:
“When Sathya Sai Baba planned the building of the big Super Speciality Hospital outside of Puttaparthy (it was built within seven months only – a real miracle) the students of the Sathya Sai Baba University knew about this plan. One day Sai Baba received a letter of one of the students including a 100 Rupee bank note.
In the text the student wrote that he was very inspired by the vision of this Super Speciality Hospital and that he wanted to give a donation. He had thought very deeply – but he was a poor student and had no financial means he could give. At last an idea came to him: he washed his laundry by himself for two months and saved 100 Rupees by doing like this. He was writing that he wanted to give this amount for the building of the Super Speciality Hospital.
All present people were deeply touched. Sai Baba said that this donation was worth more than one crow of Rupees – because it came directly from the heart…
This true story seems to have touched the heart of our Rajesh very deeply…
How much are 100 Rupees for a child, especially for a child from a poor Indian family! (For 100 Rupees you can buy 50 to 60 bananas or several flower chains or 8 to 10 packages of biscuits!) For me it was very touching as well that two school children gave a flower chain to me – it was their own idea, and they had bought this flower chain from their own money!