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Total donated in India: $263,492
Partner since: 2007

"The visits to schools were a delight. The emphasis on providing education for all—girls and boys—is admirable."

Anne & Nicholas Phillips
Carbondale, Illinois

Venkateswara Orphanage and School

We've been supporting the Venkateswara Orphanage and School since 2011 and the children who live and study here have benefited greatly from Grand Circle Foundation – donations have thus far provided ten new bathrooms and toilets, paint for the girls' dormitories, an area for contained waste disposal, and improvements to the orphanage garden. Spending time with the children and their teachers will open a door to local culture which most travelers to this region never experience.

Adarsh Bal Vidhya Mandir

We've been supporting the Adarsh Bal Vidhya Mandir Primary School since the beginning of 2009, and the students who attend have benefited greatly from Grand Circle Foundation—donations have thus far provided three new classrooms, separate boys and girls lavatories, a fresh coat of paint, computers, desks, benches, classroom fans, and a library. After spending time with the children and their teachers, we take a walking tour of the village before we are invited into local homes to share tea—and conversation—with some of the students and their families.

Saini Adarsh Vidhya Mandir

In Ramsinghpura, around 125 students attend the Saini Adarsh Vidhya Mandir Primary School—where Grand Circle Foundation has donated money for books, electric fans, three new classrooms, and lavatory facilities. Witnessing lessons here, travelers can learn a lot about how religious traditions in India have become secularized—like the morning prayers, for example, which aren't so much prayers as they are pledges to make the world a better place. Similarly, India's modern attitude toward teachers evolved from a Hindu tradition that teachers were to be worshiped second only to the gods. "Today, it's not a religious belief, but a cultural one," says OAT's Regional General Manager in India. "Yet children still remove their shoes upon entering a school, just as they would at a temple."

School in session:

Late July through early May; closed periodically throughout the year for Hindu and national holidays

Gifts to bring if you're visiting:

  • Sports equipment, such as deflated soccer balls and basketballs
  • Educational books with pictures for the school library
  • Maps of the world and U.S.
  • Games that are both educational and fun
  • Board games for playing indoors
  • Crayons
  • Coloring books
  • Pads of drawing paper