Fundraising for this challenge has ended so we're no longer accepting donations. Thanks to everyone who supported this challenge.
Total raised so far£0.00
Total plus Gift Aid: £0.00
Raised offline: £0.00
[p]Wherever you are reading this, I hope you feel safe! If you go to school, I bet you feel safe - I know that school can be difficult and people unkind, but I'm sure you're not worried about the walls falling down or someone taking you away. If you have kids at school, most of us don't worry about their safety. Most of us live and sleep in homes that feel secure, where danger is kept outside.[/p][p]In February 2019 students and staff from St Joan of Arc Catholic School visited Calcutta, India. Whilst there we spent time at various centres supported by the City of Joy Aid. At one home, the Asha Bhavan Centre (ABC), we met some young girls who had been trafficked - taken from their homes at a young age and forced to do unspeakable things. These girls now 16, 17 and 18 are getting the help and rehabilitation they need to go on to live fulfilling lives. Unfortunately they cannot be returned home as they were taken at such a young age that they don't know where they are from. These girls were beautiful and full of life - they taught us how to have hope and we taught them how to 'floss'! They were now living the childhood they deserved, in a loving home, getting an education.[/p][p]The other centre where we spent most of our time is a home for over 300 children from all over West Bengal. All these children are homed here at Udayan so that they too can have a safe childhood, get educated, and break free from the poverty that living 'at home' would trap them in. The children who live at Udayan go on to become nurses, mechanics, police officers and a range of other vocations and professions that enable them to support their whole family, even whole communities, attain a better quality of life. They all want to make a difference and help others![/p][p]On the whole, the children of Udayan are safe. However, in the last monsoon season a large section of their perimeter wall surrounding the girls accommodation collapsed. During the visit we also noticed that other sections of the wall are unlikely to survive another monsoon season. This is not good for the children of Udayan. Despite increased security, stray dogs are able to get in and an unsupervised child, some as young as three-years-old, could wander-off site if it wasn't for the diligent care of the staff at Udayan. There is also the added risk of other sections collapsing, as well as the reality that we live in a world where some people see children as something to be exploited.[/p][p]The girls we met at the ABC had experienced things that no human being ever should. Despite the love and care they now receive, the scars of their mistreatment run deep. Please help me and the students of St Joan of Arc Catholic School, protect other children from such tragedy. Help us rebuild the wall. The centre could put money aside for these repairs (as they have already begun to), and keeping the children safe, however this means that they would not be able to support as many children as they can whilst they divert funds towards a maintenance project instead of the mission of freeing children from a life of poverty.[/p][p]The pupils of St Joan of Arc School will be fundraising in a range of ways. Please check the indvidual pages below.[/p][p]Please help if you can, however much you can give is greatly appreciated.[/p]