Krishnanagar Vidyapeeth High School was established in 1986 to the south-east of Guwahati in Assam. The school originally had 3 classrooms housed in one long brick building, and a further 2 bamboo classrooms that became unusable during wet weather. The school had a shortage of furniture, toilet facilities, teaching materials, library books and until recently electricity.
The 400 students at the school all come from poor families who cannot afford to enrol their children in the established school due to their poverty. The school receives no state funding, and the qualified teachers give of their services for free.
A joint project between the Rotary clubs of Guwahati East and Sittingbourne Invicta to build a library for the school, complete with furniture and books was approved in 2007. The project was managed by the Guwahati East club who also supplied 10% of the required funding. The remaining 90% of the required project costs was met by Sittingbourne Invicta with support from the Rotary Clubs of Sittingbourne & Milton and The Isle of Sheppey.
After long planning delays, a meeting was held at the School on 21st December 2008 to celebrate the start of construction. As per Indian tradition, a "Puja" (worship to the Gods) was held to invoke blessings of the Almighty for the activity, and the first post was erected.
At one point, the slab casting for the roof was delayed owing to a shortage of water.The logistics of getting 8000 litres of water up the hill to mix with the cement became a problem. This was overcome by drawing water from a well, and then storing it in hired tanks before pumping it to site. The concrete roof was eventually cast at the end of March 2009.
Another logistics problem with bricks and other construction materials occurred during the monsoons, but was resolved when handcarts were used by the local community to carry the materials uphill. Building the brick was completed by early July 2009.
An electricity supply was connected to the school for the first time, and now supplies ceiling fans in the library and two computers.
Three years after starting the project, five club members flew to India to see the finished library, and PP Rob Fenton was given the honour of opening the completed library on 6th April 2010.
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