Emily, our Rose Queen, visits shuktara
When Emily Howling became Mellor Rose Queen in the UK in 2012 she chose shuktara as her charity and raised funds to help support our homes.
Emily wanted to visit shuktara and here's what she says on her GoFundMe page:
"Shuktara means a lot to me as it was my Rose Queen charity back in 2012, when my team and I raised over £13000 for them. Having the chance to visit would be incredible!"
This week she finally arrived in Kolkata with her mum Rachel. Every day both of them have been working with the girls at Lula Bari.
We want to send a huge thank you to everyone who supported Emily when she was Rose Queen and also on her GoFundMe page that helped her come visit us.
Saraswati Puja on the roof
Every year Saraswati Puja is celebrated on the roof of the shuktara boys' home. All of the young people at shuktara eagerly anticipate wearing new clothes and having kedgeree and prasad. Friends and family are invited to this puja and as you can see, there is always quite a crowd of people having a wonderful time.
Old friends visit shuktara
In 1999, the very beginning of shuktara, Alison and Bryan stayed in an upstairs flat in the first shuktara home. Their door was almost always open to the first five boys - Anna, Sunil, Shantara, Bapi and Sanjay.
For the next few years they taught computer skills downstairs in David's flat, shared meals with everyone at shuktara, and even went on vacations to Goa and Puri with the boys. While they lived in Kolkata they were frequent visitors to the shuktara homes.
They recently returned to Kolkata for a visit and absolutely loved being back with the young people of shuktara. They took dozens of photos - here are a few of the best.
Lula Bari awaits water delivery
While the girls were waiting for the water delivery donation from Dhiman Chowdhury (see Fresh water from a new friend) David took some photos we think you'll enjoy.
Fabric + fans at Lula Bari
Pizza party with Belinda
When Belinda is in Kolkata she always visits shuktara. Usually it's a night out at Fire and Ice to have the best pizza in Kolkata. This time the party included some of the young people from shuktara and a small group of friends. Thank you Belinda!
Day of the Dead at Lula Bari
Our friend Sunnie Nicklaus came back to Kolkata this weekend and she decided that celebrating the Day of the Dead at Lula Bari with the girls would be great fun. First she started off with a couple of hundred photos that she has taken over her previous visits and the girls pasted them all in photo albums and are able to keep their own copies.
Sunnie also brought Day of the Dead masks that everyone decorated. They all decorated each other with paper flowers and the day ended up with some of the biggest balloons we have ever seen.
Thank you Sunnie for coming back to Kolkata!