Hope is a feeling that keeps us humans sane in our darkest of times. It can come from ourselves, from others, God, inanimate objects…anything.
I would like to narrate a story of a couple that is worth knowing and spreading.
As my work would have it, this time I found myself in Tamei one of the slightly more developed Naga settlements in Manipur. I was dreading this 4 hour journey from Imphal to Tamei as the roads are in pretty bad shape, but I had my playlist and the amazing landscape to keep me company. I got onto one of the army trucks heading to Tamei and the bumpy road began.
I was sitting next 3 Sikh soldiers who continuously made me laugh and kept asking me why I am doing what ever I am doing. Anyway, cutting the long journey short I finally arrived at the 14 Sikh Camp where I was put up for the night. My agenda was to visit a couple who started a school called “Hope Foundation” and see how Sunbird can help them. So as I arrived, I changed and set out immediately to see the institution.
I was quite tired after the long truck journey but all my weariness and fatigue vanished as I was greeted with the sight of many children playing and laughing (hope not at me).
WHAT A SIGHT !!
Once I met the couple and got to know their story and how they started Hope Foundation, I couldn’t help but feel for them and yet be inspired by their come up.
Namthanbou and Judith are both well educated individuals who have now dedicated their lives towards development of their village and local community through education. They wanted to have children of their own but God had other plans for them. They took this sign as a blessing when most would have cursed and instead adopted 10 orphan children and began educating them and taking care of them. With this they embarked on the journey of officially starting a school and giving something to the community, something others were not willing to do. Now they have a 120 kids in their school and providing them with quality education, but unfortunately they are barely getting by, this is why Sunbird is here. Sunbird Trust is now sponsoring 120 children studying in Hope Foundation and funding the construction of a new hostel for them.
The couple themselves built the school with their own hands.. no masons and no labour. The school building, classrooms everything done by themselves!
To me this couple is a manifestation of an unbreakable spirit and a symbol of hope. Despite all their problems and hurdles that they faced they still kept going. No support from the government what so ever. They would teach in morning and go to their fields in the evening, which means no breathing space for them whatsoever.
I spent both my days taking lectures for the kids and playing football and badminton with them. Easily one of the highlights of 2017.