Sponsoring Children in India
- One of our Lion members is the founder and Chairman of Children's Homes in Kerala State (Chiks), India.
- Through him, Farnham Lions Club sponsors three children at the Chiks' orphanages in Kerala, situated in South West India. They are Gopika Rethesh and Priya Raju, both at the Little Flower home. Priya's brother Unni, formerly sponsored by the club, has returned to the wider family to offer his support. The third child is a young man called Sachin who has been at Chiks' Carmel Martha home for some years.
- Little is known of the children's past, other than something of the miserable conditions endured at their respective family homes which were rustic shelters in forested land with no basic facilities. However, good food and health care, plus schooling and friendships have brought them contentment after much misery in their lives.
- Sachin was believed to be aged about 9 years old when he was taken by his mother to the Chiks' Home when she could no longer endure the cruelty meted out by Sachin's jobless and drunken father. The family poverty had caused severe malnourishment in both mother and son. A career training programme is now being planned for Sachin.
- Printed below is a letter from to Chiks from a child at one of the orphanages; as with most in care she is rapidly gaining in health and her education. A confident young teenager:
I am Blessy writing to you. We are so happy when you and friends from UK come to see us and thank you to all Chiks there for making our lives more better and fun. My friends here and me thank you and the Lions for good place to live and now a medical centre here. Every day was great worry in my family before I come to this Home.
Please come again to see us soon with your friends. It is so happy time. Varsha who you know* is now gone from here and with her mother again and she wants to be here for your next time coming. So I will tell. Thank you for writing to us and I hope you get this letter soon.
Your loving Blessy x
Sisters Harsha and Varsha, sponsored by the club during much of their time at the orphanage are now back with their mother and using their education through Chiks to help the family out of poverty.