Many of you support the HOPE House unconditionally which I truly respect but there are some who choose to do the same in ways that are simple yet out of the box . To us at the HOPE House, that is inspirational so we thought to share some of their stories with you. As we all know, ‘giving’ is all about one’s heart. It’s a humbling experience to know that the work of the HOPE House has touched the hearts of so many of you and especially those that have gone out of their way to support. Sometimes I wonder why some people do what they do including in philanthropy which many of us seem to miss. I believe that their conviction to make a difference is so strong that they have no second thoughts about the means with which they want to achieve. We have learnt a great deal from these individuals and even we have been trying to emulate some of their ways and means. Please be assured that this is not an exercise to make you an advocate of the work of the HOPE House but believing in your self to make a difference. If that conviction draws you closer to the HOPE House, we would be glad to work with you but otherwise also we would rejoice in you that you’re making a difference somewhere in someone’s life. On the last slide, we have included an audio track for you to listen to. If you listen to the lyrics, I can assure you that it’ll touch your heart. May you be a blessing to many. R uby Nakka Dear Friends, Unlike our regular newsletter (“Voice of HOPE”), we want to do something different this time and that is to tell the stories of others that have chosen to partner with the HOPE House to make a difference in others lives so we thought it is appropriate to call this special edition “Voice Of Change”.
Saying ‘I do’ differently <ul><li>It was the peak of Summer in India in 2009, temperatures touching 40 degrees. I was conducting ‘Community Outreach Program’ (COP) at a local hospital to the families that are affected with HIV/ AIDS. A doctor friend of mine brought two American medical students to learn about the COP. </li></ul><ul><li>After exchanging pleasantries, we got down to learn about COP and they asked plenty of questions. At conclusion, they were ready to board a public bus which are normally very crowded and the heat could make such a journey unbearable. So, I offered to drop them off in my car. During our drive, they learnt about the work of the HOPE House. Before parting, we exchanged our emails. We included them in our database to send our newsletters but we never heard from them again…..well….that’s what we thought. </li></ul><ul><li>In October, we got an email from one of them for the first time saying that she is getting married and she want to assign her wedding gifts to the HOPE House. So she wanted us to write a small write up about the HOPE House that she could include along with the invitation. In amazement and gratitude we wrote half a page write up. </li></ul><ul><li>Our dear friend got married in December and we got a confirmation from the office in the US acknowledging receipt of her gift. </li></ul>
Giving when going gets tough <ul><li>In 2008, for the first time, I had the privilege of visiting a home of a Caucasian friend – Lynda, a home maker and a mother of four in the country-side of Iowa. Fifth child was adopted from India and that’s how we became friends since 2004. I couldn’t believe the beauty of the country-side that the next door neighbor doesn’t even live in the visible horizon. </li></ul><ul><li>When HOPE House (HH) started operations in 2006, she was only the second one to have come forward to agree to sponsor a child. </li></ul><ul><li>For her family, the only source of income is her husband’s salary. What she told me - about how she supports this little girl at the HH is what took me by surprise. She makes Indian rag dolls and sells it online. For every doll she sells, she sets aside a dollar. She even saved adequate amount of money to visit the child at HH in India in 2008. </li></ul><ul><li>She often writes to the child and encourages her to stay strong to study hard. She never forgets other HH children whenever she sends gifts to her sponsoring child. </li></ul>
Experience of a lifetime <ul><li>We had three young volunteers (Kate, Gaby and Delia) come to the HOPE House from the US last year….. Well…for three months. They never expected what they were in for. We wanted them to experience the life of an ordinary Indian. They went through the grind and accomplished some of the most amazing things for children. </li></ul><ul><li>Kate was asked to help us set up a library at the boys home. She literally had to clean the unused books, catalogued them, and set up guidelines to use them etc. She was overwhelmed by the need that she not only set up the library but a resource center with computers (and an internet). </li></ul><ul><li>Delia was asked to help us set up a Kitchen garden. She didn’t mind getting down to the ground with a spade to till it. At the end Delia saw the garden bloom. Would you be surprised if we tell you that Delia’s work had fetched 100 lb’s of produce last year for the boys home? </li></ul><ul><li>Gaby was asked to help us out set up recreational facilities for boys. She was so moved that she bought sneakers for all the boys and bought lot of sports equipment for them. For most boys, it was the first experience to own sneakers. </li></ul><ul><li>When they left, we couldn’t help but have heart full of respect for their commitment . </li></ul>
Forever in love with India <ul><li>My wife visited the US in October of 2006 on a personal visit. After the church service, she was approached by a young college graduate - Sarah asking her about visiting the HOPE House. She gave my email address to Sarah to contact me. </li></ul><ul><li>There we went communicating and she landed in India on December 1 st , 2006 all alone. She struggled with the food, crowded streets and many other things. But what she enjoyed the most was the work of the HOPE House (HH). Although language was a huge barrier, she would get down to the level of children to play, sing along and dance with them. She is fondly remembered as ‘Sarah Aunty’ by the HH girls. </li></ul><ul><li>When she left after two weeks, we had a hunch that she won’t be back to India again. She certainly proved us wrong. Since then she has visited the HH twice including leading a group of 10 college friends in 2008. </li></ul><ul><li>Now, Sarah also serves as our board of director in the US. </li></ul>
‘ Time’ value of money <ul><li> A 13 year old Grace (name changed) was admitted to the HOPE House (HH) as a ‘Semi-Orphan’ by the grand mother. Her father is remarried and wants to have nothing to do with the child. I had personally witnessed the child’s desire for her father’s love but for some reason he has distanced himself from the child. </li></ul><ul><li>Almost all the children at the HH gets visitors from time to time but Grace keeps all her emotions to herself when she gets none. She was sponsored by a very kind Indian lady in the US (Dr. Shiela). But the sponsorship to have good amenities didn’t quench Grace’s thirst for love. </li></ul><ul><li>Regularly we get visited by a lady doctor Dr. Nylla in Christian Medical College (CMC) in Vellore who is a specialist in Nuclear Medicine. Dr. Nylla also happens to be Grace’s sponsor’s good friend. When I shared about Grace’s story, Dr. Nylla assumed the role of a mentor for Grace. Every month she takes Grace home for a half a day. Grace tells us that they talk, they play, watch TV, and eat outside etc. Dr. Nylla encourages Grace to bring a friend along and she loves it because she gets to choose who goes with her. Recently when none of her family seem to have remembered her birthday, Dr. Nylla and Dr. Shiela remembered. They bought her a dress and sent greetings. That meant a world to Grace and to us. Dr. Shiela visited Grace twice already. </li></ul><ul><li>Dr. Nylla and Dr. Shiela invest Rs. 500/- every month in Grace’s name in a recurrent deposit in the post office account. </li></ul>
Blessed to be a blessing <ul><li>Three HOPE House girls joined Junior Red Cross last year. So they were given a small project – Each one collect money in a small earthen pot from our visitors to be given away to someone more disadvantaged than themselves. This was done to help them to learn to ‘give’. </li></ul><ul><li>They read newspapers everyday and when they found out about the devastating earthquake in Haiti, they volunteered to donate the entire amount to Haiti. </li></ul><ul><li>We invited the local red cross representative and broke the pots in front of her to donate more than 2000 rupees for this cause. They never did this for recognition but they received the same from the district administration (from the collector) and India Red Cross Society. </li></ul>
The Queen’s visit <ul><li>Through a mutual friend we received an email from a healthcare professional in Britain. She wanted to come to the HOPE House for a month. We really didn’t know how to respond because we have never hosted anyone from there before. </li></ul><ul><li>When she landed, she really found the place to be very different and difficult to adjust but with time she got herself into the groove. We also had difficulty understanding her strong accent in the beginning. </li></ul><ul><li>She would travel by crowded buses and autos (taxis) and engage in activities that were assigned to her with no complaints. She personally painted three classrooms in the boys home and help set up a beautiful library for the girls home. She personally took the girls to the books store to buy a large collection of English and Tamil books, catalogued them, and shelved them etc. </li></ul><ul><li>In spite of language barrier, evenings she used to spend at the girls home helping them with their home work. Occasionally we used to chat at the dinner table and learnt that her heart is pure that she just want to give. When that day came for Becky to say good bye, we could tell that her heart was heavy. We still keep in touch and thank God for this friendship. Long live the queen. </li></ul>
“ You need these more than I do” <ul><li>In the month of April this year, I had the opportunity to share about the work of HOPE House (HH) at a local engineering institute called “Vellore Institute of Technology University (VIT) . Many students showed interest by obtaining our tracts. </li></ul><ul><li>Next day, I received an email from a VIT student expressing her interest to visit the HH. Well…as we always encourage visitors to come by, we encouraged Tanya too to come by. Days passed and there was no visit. </li></ul><ul><li>One Sunday afternoon I got a call from our staff saying that there are three ladies from VIT had come to visit the HH. By the time I reached the HH, Tanya and her friends already started talking and playing with the girls. They spent the whole afternoon with the girls and towards the end they gave them what they brought - two bags full of gently used clothes, stationary, and eatables etc. </li></ul><ul><li>By evening, they all gelled so well they were talking to each other like they knew each other for a long time. One incident that really touched me that afternoon was this: One VIT student noticed a HH girl not having ear rings so she removed her ear rings and put on the little girl and said “I think you need these more than I do”. I can’t describe in words the glow on that little girl’s face that day. They left with a promise that they’ll bring more friends along. </li></ul>
OUR MOMENT OF TRUTH <ul><li>When the HOPE House began it’s work, our desire was to help children at least till they complete 12 th grade so that they can move on from that point on. Our thought process was that these children may not go beyond 12 th grade……well….we’ve been proved wrong. </li></ul><ul><li>This year, our boys home had 9 boys appeared for 12 th grade exams and we were surprised that all of the boys cleared their exams and some with very high marks. We only did the easy part – hire a tuition master for mathematics who took special classes at the home three times a week for most part of the last year. They showed that they too have dreams. </li></ul><ul><li>Looking at these boys success, we couldn’t turn our back on them so we counseled them and helped them get placed in higher educational institutions and for 100% of them, they are the first generation college goers. We have agreed to pay the tuition provided they’ll work their way to pay for their lodging and boarding. This showed us the way that if we can give an opportunity, these so called disadvantaged children can excel so we are starting a campaign in our own creative way for you to join in (see the next slide) . </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
<ul><li>We are looking for 1235 volunteers who can say ‘I CAN’ skip one can of soda/ day for one year to support ‘Higher Education Scholarship Fund’ . Math is that if you skip one can of soda a day (that costs $ 0.50), you can contribute $ 15 dollars (Rs. 675/-) each month. </li></ul><ul><li>1235 Volunteers X $ 15 X 12 Months = $ 222300 (or about one crore Indian rupees) . </li></ul><ul><li>Corpus will be invested in a fixed deposit and 75% of the interest will be distributed as an yearly scholarship to the most deserving children while the remaining will be reinvested into the corpus. </li></ul><ul><li>Your giving could have profound impact as many are first time college goers and that could mean an entire generation might be pulled out of poverty for ever. </li></ul><ul><li>So, please join in this campaign by saying “I CAN” and become a change agent. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
<ul><li>If the ‘Voice Of Change” had touched your heart and would like to be a part of HOPE House work on a continuous basis, you can consider underwriting one or more projects mentioned below: </li></ul><ul><li>At the girls home, underwrite the cost of vegetables for a week for Rs. 500/- or $12/- </li></ul><ul><li>Underwrite the cost of supporting one family under Community Outreach Program (COP) for one month for Rs. 800/- or $18/- </li></ul><ul><li>At the girls home, underwrite the cost of non-vegetarian meal twice a week for Rs. 1 200/- or $28/- </li></ul><ul><li>At the girls home, underwrite the cost of milk for a month for Rs. 1200/- or $28/- </li></ul><ul><li>For girls, underwrite an excursion (to be taken once in a year) for Rs. 10,000/- or $ 220/- </li></ul><ul><li>Underwrite purchasing of musical instruments (Trumpet, Clarinet, Saxophone and a Bugle) for the boys home for Rs. 14,470 or $322/- </li></ul><ul><li>Underwrite purchasing of 75 rain coats for the boys home for Rs. 15,675/- or $348/- </li></ul>If you’re in India, you can make your payment addressed to ‘The HOPE House’ and send to: The HOPE House 16/28, 25 th East Cross Road Gandhinagar Vellore – 632006 Tamilnadu ( Contributions are eligible for tax deduction allowed by the Indian tax code under 80 G) If you’re in the US, you can make payment addressed to ‘HOPE House International’ and send to: Hope House International PO Box 7438 Chico, CA 95927-7438 (Contributions are eligible for tax deduction allowed by the IRS under 501c3) If you live in any other country, write to [email_address] to learn about how you can partner with us.