Tamil Nadu school gets water supply!

Healthy drinking water is obviously worth queuing up for. [See photo above] Boys from the Kottikuppam Primary School in Tamil Nadu, South India, celebrate having healthy water on tap, the result of hard work by the staff from the Pitchandikulam Bio Resource Centre (PBRC).

The supply of reliable and safe drinking water is just one part of the continued support for the region, which includes healthy drinks as a food supplement for those children who are not receiving adequate nutrition for growth and wellbeing, health clinics, training in income-generating ideas for the women in the region who have created women’s self-help groups, and providing kitchen shelters to help the women who prepare the midday meals for the students.

New library for Tamil Nadu high school

For the older students attending the Nadukuppam High School there have also been some exciting developments – they have a new library. This has been created out of a room that was previously only used as a store room. Now, with a coat of paint, some new furniture and the books proudly displayed on bookshelves, they have a great library.

Help for this, in terms of financial support as well as some hard work, has come from the staff at the school and from PBRC, and also from a group of teachers in Victoria who spent their school holidays there recently to give some practical help to the school.

Living Gifts 2010

There is still time to use the Living Gifts catalogue that is in your Meeting House to buy a gift that gives twice – once, for you to give a specific card to your friend or family members; and, second, for you to provide support to a QSA project.

By giving a Living Gift you are also helping our partners in India, Cambodia, Uganda or Indigenous Australia. These Living Gifts have been decided upon with project partners, and will improve access to services, and increase knowledge, skills and community expertise.

This year we have introduced the idea of an electronic card as a means of reducing the amount of paper fibres used. The QSA office is only an email or phone call away, or you can reach us via our website of www.qsa.org.au. The gift will mean so much to so many.

New project in Cambodia

QSA has recently started a new project in Prek Chrey Village in Koh Thom District in Kandal Province. This is with an organisation called Khmer Community Development which was formed in 2002.

Although the organisation is new to us, it has been funded for a few years by American Friends Service Committee. However, a change of policy and circumstances has meant that they are not able to continue that funding support.

Prek Chrey Village is a divided community. The inland part is exclusively inhabited by Khmer, and the outer part alongside the river bank is home to a Vietnamese majority, among whom the Khmer and Khmer-Vietnamese represent only 5% of the population.

The overall goals of the project over several years are to enhance the self-esteem and mutual support of all members of the community as interethnic cooperation is still a problem in the region. QSA will be funding training and support for a cow bank and rice bank to assist with livelihood improvement, and also a savings group to provide small loans to enable them to set up small businesses in the region.

It possibly will be one of many projects that the February 2011 study tour to Cambodia will be visiting. Not heard of the study tour yet? Well, get on the phone (029698 9103) or email to Jackie Perkins (administration@QSA.org.au) and ask for more details.

All photos courtesy of PBRC. Permission granted for all photos to be used.

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