“One is not born into the world to do everything but to do something.”
Last month I shared how Rising Star Outreach got it’s name
, and that this year we are celebrating ten years of being an NGO. We are also celebrating the beginnings of the school that first year with 27 children. It’s exciting to reflect on these years and the tremendous growth that has transpired since then; however, I must backtrack and recognize that there were many years before the school began, where much work was taking place to get us to the place where we could even apply for registration in India as an NGO.
We, at Rising Star, express sincere gratitude to the many many dedicated people who spent hundreds of hours, made personal sacrifices, and served in India—all as volunteers—in making the Rising Star Outreach we know today. Their hands and hearts and dedicated service are an integral and important part of the Rising Star Outreach story, and we extend appreciation to those individuals for the blessing of their service!
Speaking of volunteers and volunteering-We’re looking for a few ordinary people with extraordinary hearts!
Our summer sessions are filling up, and we have also added several new sessions throughout the year. Don’t miss out on this unique life-changing experience!
It’s an incredible opportunity to see firsthand how human suffering is still a challenge for so many in the world and how you can personally
make a difference in individual lives. You can gain new skills, make new friends, benefit from work experience, give something back, and have fun. Above all, it’s an opportunity to do something different to make a real difference in the world.
Ann Herlin, a recent volunteer, shared this:
“Working with the volunteers was a remarkable experience for me…I saw volunteers experience joy and excitement as they taught and played with the students. There was a change in their hearts as they touched and hugged those whose lives are so very hard, but who are also a thankful and happy people. There was magic as I watched volunteers who came to India and Rising Star thinking they would help others, then see the change in their lives as those affected with leprosy graciously gave joy to those serving them. That’s the magic of volunteering!”
Rising Star India
March and April are important months for the students and staff, because it is testing time on the Rising Star Outreach Campus. Everyone is engaged in this process, as it is the culmination of all the hours dedicated to knowledge and learning throughout the year. In 2013, our school, the Peery Matriculation School, received the distinction of being the #1 school in the entire Kancheepuram District out of approximately 563 schools, and our Principal, Mr. Anthony Xavier, received the Honorable Minister of State Award, given to those who work with children. Our school is now recognized as the top-tiered school in that area! We are proud of the students, and especially grateful for our Principal, Mr. Xavier and our dedicated and amazing teachers who continue making education a blessing to these students. Because we know:
Education gives options and opportunities.
Education ends the cycle of poverty.
Education removes the stigma of leprosy.
Education creates hope!
Congratulations to our students and teachers for making education a priority and blessing!
In March I traveled to India for the dedication of the Kikindia Health Center for Rising Stars
, a beautiful new building for the medical and dental care of students and those we serve in the leprosy colonies. Kiki Reijner, from the Netherlands, founded Kikindia
after working with children and witnessing their struggles of surviving in India—hence Kikindia (her name, country, and ‘kind’ in the middle, which means children in Dutch)—an organization helping children!
She heard about Rising Star Outreach, was impressed with the mission of the organization, and offered to assist children at Rising Star. She and many donors from her country raised the funds to build the Kikindia Heath Center for Rising Stars.
The dedication was a beautiful event for the Rising Star administration, management, staff, and students and especially for Kiki and her guests from the Netherlands. Songs, speeches, the lighting of the ceremonial candles, and dances performed by Rising Star Outreach students and choreographed by Kyla Threlfall (Promethean Spark
Coordinator), made it a special day for everyone.
Now Rising Star Outreach has a beautiful, functional, and a much needed medical building on our campus, which will help students who are ill, be quarantined from other students without exposing all students to the flu or to a horrible cold. Students will also receive regular medical and dental check-ups. Our medical team will be able to store records and medical supplies for those in the leprosy colonies, and on Parent’s Visiting Day some of our patients can also be seen. Cheers and much gratitude to you, Kiki, Kikindia, and to happy and healthy children!
It’s humbling to think of all the people who have done ‘something’ in helping Rising Star Outreach, and it’s exciting to see how the mission of Rising Star Outreach goes forward in assisting with medical care, education, and micro-grants.
Many years, many hands, and many hearts collectively lifting those affected by leprosy…so many positive possibilities ahead! Thank you for your continued support. We could not do it without you!