Friday, February 17, 2017

Zilla High School in West Godavari

The Zilla Parishath High School in Katakoteswaram Village, in West Godavari District, has 312 students in grades 6 to 10. When we first visited the school in June 2016, we found that there was no electricity in the upper floor of the building--thus no lights or fans in classrooms--including a new computer lab with six computers.

The wiring throughout the building was grim.

In addition, the student desks--really benches for four students with a common desk top--were falling apart. The students in the lower grades had no desks at all and sat on the floor. The teachers had no desks or chairs.

Further, their borewell was not reliable. Sometimes it would provide a dribble of water, sometimes none at all. The submersible pump was damaged and the riser pipe was broken.

The students were enthusiastic and happy, as was their Head Mistress--Mary Augustus, a member of the Rajahmundry Third Ward. 

They were proud of their academic and sports achievements--including Yoga skills.

Here are some of the Yoga moves they showed us.

Sister Newton gave it a try, at their urging.

It is not as easy as it looks...especially when you are old enough to be their grandmother!

When it was time to leave, we told them we would do our best to see what we could do to help the school.

The teachers and staff were happy for the prospect that we may be able to help.

Fast-forward seven months to January 2017 and we are delivering 40 brand new colorful metal desks and 8 new teacher desks and chairs--

all manufactured by the inmates of the Rajahmundry Central Jail.

There were two large lorries filled to the very

top and then some...

The students wasted no time unloading the desks, tables and chairs...

Desks and tables were lined up on the grounds in front of the building.

There was excitement in the air!

Happy faces everywhere.

Time for a group picture after the desks are all lined up after delivery!

Two months later, on 10 Feb 2017 we are celebrating with a Felicitation and Founders Day--

It all  began with a parade of drums, flags and cheers of students.

Some of the older girls in the school performed ethnic Indian dances. This dance shows love and gratitude.

Afterward, the girls wanted a snap of them, us and their leader together.

Then it was time to cut the ribbon on several desk sets, symbolizing a new beginning...

Indians cut ribbons for the beginning of everything!

Then is was off to the computer lab...this time it has power!!

The students showed us their newly acquired computer operation skills.

The school now operates an adult computer lab class in the evenings as well for village parents.

This is what their typical classroom looks like now.

Because it was also Founders Day, the school gave a report to the community and the State Office of Education regarding the school's academic and sports achievements. Here, we had the opportunity of presenting ribbons to students for their successes.

We were also showered with shawls, flower leis, a plaque of appreciation and an original painting by the school art teacher.

It was a day we will remember for a very long time.


  1. What a wonderful gift to the school. I am sure they will be grateful for many years for your service.

  2. That is soooooo awesome and I'm sure so rewarding!! Very exciting when you can do so much for those that have so little!!