Leena Therese comes from a poor family in the rural village of Elayankanni. Leena, a bright and hard working student, always achieved top marks in her exams. After completing secondary school, she enrolled in a college to study for a Medical Electronic Engineering degree. She managed despite financial difficulties, to successfully complete two years.
She was heartbroken when due to her Dad becoming very ill, she had to leave college to help support her poverty stricken family. Leenas career looked like an impossible dream. Nandri heard of Leenas plight and agreed to pay the next two years of college fees which will enable her to graduate and fulfill her ambition to become a successful Electronic Engineer. With the help of Nandri and the generosity of our donors, Leena Therese will have a secure and successful future and be able to support her family.
In February 2016 we opened our Nandri Centre. This is a training and administration centre for our mothers and children built on 2 acres of land in a rural part of southern India. Previously we had to move every 12 months as our mothers who are members of the Dalit so called low caste community are like travellers in Ireland. They are not welcome anywhere.
They are proud to be members of Nandri. They proudly wear their Nandri saris. They even pay for membership which is helping to make the organisation self sustaining.
We have one large training room with full audiovisual facilities and a computer room with a dozen computers. We run regular training courses. Our large reception area is used for regular cheque presentations for loans.
A few weeks ago we had 200 mothers attend what is called an RPL (recognition of prior learning) course which is funded by the Indian government. This particular course was to teach the mothers how to pack and pick vegetables. The mothers are each paid to encourage them to attend the course and Nandri Foundation are compensated for running the course including providing food for the attendees. These mainly illiterate mothers are proud of the certification and it will be easier for them to get daily work and will also become an important part of our income following our major investment in the centre.
Every day almost 200 children attend English language courses in local villages. They learn spoken English through song. They get help with their homework and are provided with some nutrition before they play games. We now have a playground for them and a cricket training area in the centre and they will be invited there on a regular basis.
We are pleased with the success of the centre which was funded by large donations by Irish donors and directors.