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Hope Connect Dec 2009

December 03, 2009 By: dev Category: Newsletters No Comments →

   Hope Connect 


DECEMBER 2009  update of the Hope Home  Calcutta


  Dev writes


Beloved friends:


The focus of this month: TOGETHER WE BOND




  The Hope Home Calcutta was initiated with a couple of young volunteers from the U.S. who bonded with a few of us, some 9 years back.


On December 5, India and the rest of the world celebrates volunteerism and its contribution to communities and to development.
Volunteerism is recognized as a  powerful resource to engage people in the pursuit of peace and development.

The United Nations General Assembly declared December 5th as the International Volunteer Day in 1985. This provides an annual opportunity for volunteers and volunteer organizations worldwide to showcase their invaluable contributions to development. Every year, millions of  volunteers contribute their invaluable time in various forms of supports.

The Hope Home Calcutta would like to place on record its tribute to millions of people around the world who contribute their time and efforts to help tackle some of the world's most pressing challenges, from reducing poverty to addressing climate change, and whose efforts often go unrecognized. 

Volunteerism is a feature of all cultures and societies, and a fundamental source of community strength, resilience, solidarity and social cohesion. "It can help effect positive social change by fostering inclusive societies that respect diversity, equality and the participation of all," according to U.N.

Secretary-General Ban.

Today, all of us can see the  extraordinary contributions made by volunteers across the world, from responding to disasters, to efforts to tackle major development challenges such as climate change, peace, human health, as well as the encouragement and engagement in society of youth and marginalized groups. Volunteers are critical partners for development and deserve every support and recognition for their contribution to development efforts around the world.


We, at the Hope Home Calcutta want to thank God for every one of you who have volunteered your time, resources, skills and talents over the years with us, especially for the children of the city.  We appreciate all of you. As a tribute to all of you, I have selected this poem:




These are the ones who give so much

To soothe our fears with a tender touch.

They arrive each week with a smile so dear

And help to wipe away the most awful fear.

They come in all colors, shapes and ages

And give of their time without any wages.

Each has a talent they are willing to share

With people who know how much they care.

They come in all weather, rain or shine,

To work at the Home from nine to nine.

From answering phones to mopping floors,

They find great joy in doing chores.


We are very lucky, there is no doubt,

For Volunteers we can't do without.

To each one we'd like to say

Thanks for putting sunshine in each day.

-author unknown




(A Hope Home Calcutta Initiative)

Rescue Relocation Rehabilitation



We, at the Hope Home Calcutta (through this initiative —HOCEP, are seeing to work  towards the transformation and empowerment of individuals and communities – ESPECIALLY CHILDREN (CHILD LABORERS)  through initiatives based on advocacy, crisis intervention, education, rehabilitation, training and resourcing.


This is the life-changing life story of Ruth at the Hope Home Calcutta:

  RUTH (Birthday – September 28, 1993)


Ruth came to us when she was 8 years old. Her brother Cephas (13) and Martha (10) are also at the Hope Home .


A few months prior to coming to the Hope Home , Ruth’s father – he worked as a building mason’s help earning about $2 a day – was shot dead over the ear in broad daylight. People, related with him by marriage engaged hired killers to shoot him dead. While his body lay in an open field with parts of the head strewn all over, Ruth was made to go over to the body to retrieve some money left in her father’s shirt pocket. Such was the trauma that she had to face that it left a deep emotional and psychological scar in her young mind. And then came the aftermath…


Ruth’s mother was not equipped to neither support her three small children nor take care of the mud-walled room (without electricity and sanitation) where they lived. Ruth had to discontinue her studies in a small, government-run vernacular school and look after her siblings. In a few weeks time food ran out and the children were forced to literally beg for food from their neighbors and relatives. Most of the time they were turned out of their homes and spent the day roaming the neighborhood, asking people for food.


When we first met the children, the three of them were in tattered clothes, malnourished and Ruth in particular, had sores all over her body. It was a very challenging time for us to take in Ruth and Cephas. They were taken in first by one of our caregivers in her rented apartment, cleaned, looked after and taught right from scratch (I mean A, B, C…) and put on nutrition-based diet and pediatric care.


What has happened in the last 8 years that Ruth has been with us is nothing short of a great miracle. Ruth is now in Grade 8, learning programming (C++), doing Grade 4 in violin of the Royal Schools of Music, is a gifted painter and has a strong motivation to stand strong in life against all odds. She wants to be engaged with music as a career in the days ahead.


This then is the story of Ruth – a story  of transformed and empowered life, which is the story of the Hope Home Calcutta! And we would never have been able to achieve any of this, but for your participation in the lives of the children here.



Most of you are aware of the building project we embarked upon in 2006 to provide proper facilities to children who are part of the Hope Home Calcutta. We had a soccer drive (each soccer ball representing 5%of the estimated costs). Later on we added the girls dorm (as an afterthought!). While we were able to meet our budget needs for the girls dorm (stand-along budget) last December, we are still in a deficit regarding our original building project.


While I do acknowledge that this is probably not the right time (nor PC – politically correct), especially in the light of the global recession and the  DD (Dubai Debacle!!), I would nonetheless request you to consider participating in this critical need as a gift for the children of the Hope Home Calcutta during this Holiday Season! (3 Soccer ‘balls’ yet to be filled in)



Dr. Gary and Rebecca Strobl from Georgia have been VOLUNTEERING and spending their Christmas at the Hope Home Calcutta for the past four years on an average of 3 weeks every year. It has been a life-changing experience for them (and the Hope Home Calcutta family is excited every-time they are here). This year, we are also having our dear friends from Colorado Springs to enrich our experience. It would be wonderful if there were others who would like to drop by for this truly amazing experience of spending Christmas at the Hope Home Calcutta.


You are also welcome to write to us regarding opportunities of physical involvement with the work here. We do need volunteers especially in the area of counseling, administration, teaching, accounts, and nursing.




Some of you have enquired about possibilities of sponsoring children in 2010 (Peter, for one, doesn’t have any sponsor).  A few of our friends who have been involved in the past supporting the children on a regular basis and no longer involved. Some have also expressed interest in the Back-Pack program. Please write to me for details.




Ordinary people can do extraordinary things

Bikram Dasgupta, Founder of Globsyn Technologies, India





December  15 - Ranjit

December  17 – Kezia

December  25 - Sarban


Regards and Blessings,


Dev and all of us at the Hope Home Calcutta



Support for the Hope Home Calcutta should be sent to/checks made out to:



(Please  designate your gift  for Hope Home Calcutta clearly)




P.O. JOKA, CALCUTTA 700 104, INDIA , Tel: +91-33-6534 1083/ 6520 9995

(all contributions are tax deductible under Section 80G of the I.T. Act, 1961)