Tag: boys

Spring festival of Holi

After Saraswati Puja everyone looks forward to Holi, the spring festival of colours. All the flowering trees are in full bloom, colour is everywhere and spring has truly arrived.

Holi is probably one of the few festivals that needs no explanation because around the world photos are shared of people young and old throwing coloured powder and eventually covered in a rainbow of colours.

Here are just a few photos and videos of the fun at shuktara

Adam and his son visit shuktara

Adam Thompson first visited shuktara back in 2001. After that visit he was committed to supporting the work of shuktara in whatever way he could and when Shuktara Trust UK was registered he naturally became a Trustee.

On the 18th February Adam returned to shuktara with his son Frankie. Being able to show them around Anna Bari, Lula Bari and Shuktara Cakes was a thrill for all of us.

In Adam’s words…

“I know it sounds like just the ridiculous talk of a cosseted north London liberal (which I am!), but everything felt likeโ€ฆ home. This is what I remember feeling a decade and a half ago and it was amazing to feel it, perhaps even more strongly, on this visit.”

“The great privilege for both of us was to feel like we were welcomed into this zany, slightly chaotic, incredibly warm family. It just felt so special.”

To read the full transcript of what Adam wrote about his visit to shuktara please click here: https://us7.campaign-archive.com/?u=19bfe4a278e40a10e7e00286b&id=f79a2a8073

Saraswati Puja at Anna Bari

Saraswati Puja is an annual event at shuktara and everyone is invited. Shuktara has a history of celebrating Saraswati Puja going back to the early days in Jubilee Park when our first boys attended REACH school.
Even though they have finished, Aakash has just started! Now that our girls are coming to the end of their studies at the same school, this Puja has a special place in the story of shuktara and this year we remembered Anna and kept his photo next to the goddess.

Here are some photos of the festivities – many thanks to Marci Radin and Sarah Annay for their fantastic images.

shuktara home for young people with disability

Shuktara welcomes Bappa Singh

At the end of January we took a new boy into Anna Bari.

Pappu was contacted by an agency who had found a boy with cerebral palsy in the centre of Kolkata. Initially he was wary of taking this young boy in case his family came to claim him. Soon it became clear that no one would come looking for him as his mother had left him on Park Street, a really busy area, outside a hotel on a street corner – we are sure she did this knowing that he would be taken into care.

So after a couple of days, Pappu said yes!

Bappa Singh is verbal and hearing David, loves to repeat “How Are You” in a what sounds like a London accent! Heโ€™s a bright little boy and even though his legs and one arm donโ€™t work very well he is very mobile.
He has a bright future at shuktara. And with all that has happened to him – he hasn’t stopped smiling.

shuktara home for young people with disabilities

Aakash assessment at REACH

Over the years most of our young people have attended REACH school. Pappu took Aakash to REACH for his assessment and as you can see from the photo below in the car he could hardly contain his excitement. He completely won them over not only with his ability to put vegetable pieces in the right place but also with his winning smile.

Aakash starts school next week - for the first time ever! We couldn't be more proud of him.

To read more about Aakash please click here.

shuktara boys home for young people with disabilities - Anna Bari

Anna Bari

Although the shuktara girls home is called Lula Bari we've never had a name for the boys home - until now. We think the very best way to honour Anna's memory is to name the boys home after him.

First we had our expert sign maker draw up a design. The photos above show the design and it's creation and installation.

The boys home will always be known as Anna Bari.

shuktara homes for young people with disabilities

Getting ready for Kali

In West Bengal we are very lucky because we celebrate two festivals of light - first Kali Puja (dedicated to the goddess of Kolkata, Kali) and on the following night, Diwali (Hindu New Year).

On both nights pradeep (shallow clay vessels with oil) and candles are placed all around the house. The short videos and photos below show preparations for lighting up the house on Kali Puja.

shuktara homes for young people with disabilities

Shuktara documentary update

In October Phoebe Brown and the film crew from Atlanta will be headed back to Kolkata to continue shooting the new documentary. From Phoebe's GoFundMe page:

"As I've been working on this edit - I had the chance to pull up some great field photos and was reminded again (as if I needed reminding!) how special everyone at shuktara is. I want to give a special shout out to Pappu - whose spirit just shines in these images. Not only is he just a genuinely wonderful human being, but he puts up with our 1 million questions, translates both Bengali and sign language, helps us lug gear, gets us places we need to go....all while making sure the day to day of running shuktara is smooth. I hate that we have to work you overtime when we visit but I can't wait to do it again!"

Pappu is an extraordinary and inspiring person - his deep commitment to shuktara is obvious in these photos. To see the latest news about the documentary or to help support this amazing film please click here:

www.gofundme.com/shuktarafilm