In classrooms across the country, CBS’ Channel One News aired a segment about She’s the First for Women’s History Month! Tammy Tibbetts talked about how students who don’t have dollars to donate can still make an impact by corresponding with the girls we sponsor. Emails are pouring in from students asking where they can begin…it starts here!
To refresh your memory, here is the segment, framed by Jancy’s story and how education transformed her life:
Now here is part of an essay Jancy wrote about her life in India. It was published in The Huffington Post today! This is your task, Channel One viewers! Read Jancy’s story and then in the comments of this blog post, write back with a question, and tell her what your dream is, what your school day is like, or what your family is like. We will send her your notes, publish her response, and then email you when you can leave your next round of comments. Maybe a new friendship will form!
My name is Jancy. I am 16. My mom is a single parent and I have two older brothers. I was born in a small village in the Hassan district of the Karnataka state, in India.
When I was three and a half, I joined Shanti Bhavan, a non-secular residential school for socially and economically disadvantaged children. Shanti Bhavan is a unique institution, where we are given not only a quality education, but taught globally shared values, such as humility, generosity, and acceptance. Joining Shanti Bhavan was perhaps the most significant, life-changing event in my life.
I have stayed at Shanti Bhavan for almost 13 years now, and it is like my second home. Here, I have the biggest family ever; we are all bound by our love for one another. There is something about Shanti Bhavan that is special — almost divine — and difficult to express in words.
Shanti Bhavan is a part of me. Sometimes, I wonder how I am going to handle it when I wake up one morning and realize I have graduated.
After all, it is here that I have learned everything from the alphabets in the English language to the literature of Shakespeare. It is here that I received my first toothbrush, my first warm bed, and my first shampoo. It is where I tasted pancakes for the first time.
All of the students at school are taken care of by our housemothers. Our teaching staff is comprised of Indian teachers, as well as volunteers from various parts of the world and all walks of life, who greatly enrich our education and broaden our perspectives.
We are taught from a very early age not to discriminate against one another. We respect all religions and are free to practice our own. We have the freedom to voice our own opinions. And, furthermore, we are asked to have opinions on world issues.
I am almost a senior now, and grateful to everyone at Shanti Bhavan who continues to inspire me each day to move forward. I am studying Accounting, Economics, and Commerce and preparing to take the ISC exam next year, considered among the most challenging in India.
To me, education is the key to the many doors I want to open. I want to be the first girl in my family to go to college. I want to get my Master’s degree. I want to combine the fields of business and fashion someday. I want to find success to improve the status of my family. I want to continue the Shanti Bhavan dream.
Ready, set, comment!