Saturday, March 30, 2013

iPads? iPads!

Several generous friends donated two iPads to Karunya Mane -- one for the boys and one for the girls. The kids just love their iPads!

Surya with Mohan (left) and Darshan (right)

Even our house mothers are addicted... they've discovered the Internet and are able to help the older kids with homework projects by looking up information using Google.

In general, the girls like to browse and learn about different places and Indian holidays. The boys are obsessed with picture of tigers, snakes, and creepy crawly creatures.

During the summer holiday (April and May), the kids are enjoying daily time on the iPads, which have opened up a whole world to them -- safely, of course, through a child-safe browser!

If you have recommendations for great educational apps that we could download, let us know!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Sisters and brothers at Karunya Mane

We're well into the final exam period for the kids -- school is out at the end of March -- so they aren't doing a whole lot except studying. Night and day. The exams are going well so far, no major hiccups and they return from school each day and say, "oh that test was easy!" We'll see how their report cards turn out --  more on that on April 10!

In the meantime, we thought we'd share with you the brother and sister combinations at Karunya Mane. We have a few siblings, making for a nice family environment.

Arabia, Sadiq, Razak. Dad Rafiq suffers from health issues. Mom Azeez passed away a few years ago. 
Not related but just like siblings! From top clockwise: Shanti, Mamatha, Venkatesh, Thanmaye, Divya. 
Latha and Jyothi. Mom Lakshmi and Dad Lakshman lived on the streets for many years. The girls have never lived in a house. Mom and Dad now rent a small house. 
Devaraj and Harish. Mom Padma passed away in 2009. Dad Dorai Raj passed away many years ago, which put the kids and mom on the streets. 
Prema, Sumitra, and Mohan. Dad Gangadhara passed away a few years ago. Mom Kumari and the kids lived on the streets for many years. Mom now rents a small house. They are Latha's and Jyothi's cousins.
Not related but like brothers. From top: Raju, Adarsh, Venkatesh (again 'cuz he's so cute). 
Sharath, Pooja, Shwetha. Mom Manjula and Dad Raju, both from a slum, are separated. 
Shilpa, small Vishnu, Jeevan. Dad Mani passed away in December 2012. Mom Kamala continues to live in a gudisalu (sweeper's slum) in Mysore. 
Suma, Manjula, Renuka, Manu. Mom Shanti passed away a couple of years ago. They lived on the streets after dad abandoned them.
From top: Surya, Sowmya, Darshan. Mom Girija took good care of the kids even when they had no house. Dad Jayaram sometimes disappeared for months on end.  
Vinod, Netra, Swarana, Lalitha. Mom Uma and Dad Raju live in a slum and could barely feed their kids. 
Vijayalakshmi and Vinuta. Single mom Lakshmi lost her husband Satyanarana a few years ago and had difficulty raising her two very smart girls. 
Darshan and Umesh. Mom Kavita and Dad Rudra are separated, and used to live on the streets. The boys have never lived in a house. Mom now rents a house in a nearby village and works for us.
Pallavi and Vishnu. They lived with Mom Sushila and Dad Gururaj on the streets since birth. They are cousins of Darshan and Umesh and have never lived in a house. Mom and Dad now rent a small house.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Girls and karate

The girls had a karate test on the 24th of February, and did just great! Check out the photos from the event --

Manjula getting her orange belt; she started karate lessons at KM in 2010.
The girls (Arabia, Netra, Mamatha, Shweta, and Renuka) who got yellow belts. 
The KM girl's gang!
Pooja, promoted to a maroon belt.
Break time: Shwetha, Vijayalakshmi, Suma, Divya. 
Prema (front), the most advanced with a brown belt.
Shwetha, Renuka, and Vijayalakshmi going from white to yellow belts.
We are very proud that the girls enjoy their twice-weekly karate lessons and are learning the value of self-defense, particularly in India where violence against females is a major issue faced by women of all socio-economic classes.

Go girls!

If you're interested in supporting our girls with karate lessons, their lessons cost approximately Rs.800 or US$16 per week. Thank you!