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14th Year: 2012
- Seva Talk at RI

- Stacks in S'pore & Partner Yoga

- Racial Harmony Day at Unity Secondary School

- AOL Adv Course & Grandpa's Gifts

- Family Gathering & Yuki's Wedding in KL

- Tribal School Project, Jharkhand, India
- Children's Garden Home, Nairobi, Kenya
- Shooting Wildlife in Masai Mara Reserve, Kenya
- Rock Climbing at Safra Yishun

- Skiing at Secret Garden + Great Wall of China


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Seva 2012 in India & Kenya

4-9 OCT 2012: Return to Tribal School Project in Jharkhand, India

A warm JGD from the tribal kids at Kalchiti Middle SchoolAlvin embarked on Seva 2012 alone as Robyn was starting her secondary one exam and Jin staying home to mother and support her.

The first stop for Seva 2012 was Tribal School Project in India. Alvin flew in to Kolkata and travelled by train the next morning to Ghatsila with Swapan. Chawla-ji was already in Ghatsila then.

It was just so wonderful to meet all the old friends, teachers and the lovely tribal children in the various schools.


The original faces of humanity's bliss and innocence. They are
that of yours and mine too, if we could still remember...
Tribal children at Kalchiti Middle School

> My inspiration and mentor - Chawla-ji, who founded Tribal School Project in 1999. He is the light who shows me how to live the being of kindness and seva. He's an amazing giant of a man!

Mr Brij Chawla, founder of Tribal School Project in Jharkhand

Alvin speaks to students of SMU on social entrepreneurship

Upon arriving at the Hindoljuri High School, the signage that I helped to design last year greeted me warmly. It was nice to have left a little mark.

And the Teachers' Training Institute is completed and operational! When we left last May, its foundation was just being dug and laid...

My first day of visit coincided with the visit by the second batch of city kids from the Sri Sri Academy in Kolkata. We visited there last year and were impressed with the facilities in that 'rich school'.

It was a experiential excursion for the city kids to befriend and play with the tribal kids in Ghatsila. They certainly come from two different worlds, even though they are physically just 3.5 hours apart by train.

The city kids, accompanied by a few teachers, visited various Tribal Schools, where they were treated to tribal performances - songs, dances and skits. The city kids also performed a variety of songs, dances and poetry for their tribal friends.

Their overnight stay at a no-frill hotel with no aircon and modern facilities, but with power cut, must have been a memorable experience for these city kids.

The city kids helping the tribal kids to look up the dictionary for the definition of English words I dished out as a fun test. The dictionaries are all nicely wrapped up and well preserved. We donated these English-English-Hindi Oxford dictionaries last year under the A-Dictionary-A-Child initiative.

Library at Kalchiti Middle School
Head teacher Krishna and the library
at Kalchiti Middle School.

Life-Science Library at Hindoljuri High School

The donated books that we shipped from Singapore are now all distributed to various tribal schools and neatly kept at each school library that we also set up last year. I was particularly thrilled to see the set of Life Science and Nature series that my father bought for me when I was in primary school, now being used by the kids at Hindoljuri High School.

Kalchiti Middle School new annex

Last May, we were measuring and marking on the farm land and visualizing this new annex at Kalchiti Middle School. It's a reality now!

Alvin sharing ideas on how to use the library books for innovative teaching

Alvin offering ideas to the teachers on how to make full use of the reference books and DVD/VCD for innovative teaching. Mr Tewari helped to do translation.

Projector powered by solar power

John Ong donated 2 sets of solar system and we started the Solar Classroom experiment at Hindoljuri Primary School and Kalchiti Middle School last Sep. Each solar classroom set comprises solar panels, a transformer box, a laptop and a projector.

The solar panels at Hindoljuri Primary SchoolAs many of the Tribal Schools either have no power supply or face unpredictable power outage on a daily basis, the schools are not able to leverage IT for teaching.

With this solar system, teachers are able to use multimedia tools such as DVD/VCD and educational software for teaching.

Kids watching a DVD cartoon on moral education

The experiment was a success! Teachers are empowered and they said the use of movie and projection capture the kids' attention at a high level.

Solar Classroom at Kalchiti Midlle School

Chawla-ji's intention is to extend the Solar Classroom facility to 10 more schools over the next one year to benefit more tribal children.

This is the pioneer high school batch to graduate from Tribal School. A total of 20 youth will be taking the national exam in mid Oct 2012. It is my hope to accompany these kids in their life pursuit. Some are keen to become teachers and staff of Tribal Schools. Perhaps some might walk the path of entrepreneurs and realize the vision of Tribal Enterprise for the long term upliftment of tribal poverty.

Geetha Singh

Geetha Singh, whose portrait I shot and used as the cover of the Tribal School Project brochure last year, is now a year more mature and beautiful.


On 9 Oct, Alvin flew from Kolkata to Nairobi, Kenya.


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