Monthly Archives

June 2023

Mr. Sathish

By Featured, Project Stories

Following Through.

Sometimes our job titles can become simply that—just a title. But when Mr. Sathish Kumar tells you he is a principal of a primary government school in Doddahejjuru village in India, he embraces all that it is to be a principal. Out of everything that comes with his job, caring for his students is priority number one for him. Many of the students in his school come from families that don’t have much…they live in the Nagarahole forest area of India, and they face an interesting economic issue. There are many efforts in place to preserve the forest and wildlife within it, which is a good thing, but because of this preservation, there is little economic activity. Little economic activity leads to financial difficulties for communities and families, which is then felt among the children who aren’t able to get school supplies and a quality education, because their families simply don’t have the money.

Mr. Sathish Kumar sees the need his students have and wants to help because he longs for them to succeed, to achieve things they never thought possible. However, it seemed like not everyone longed for that same success for the students. Over time many people had visited the school and promised to help the children, but when they would leave, they never followed through on their word. This happened over and over until our partner, Sam, stepped in and followed through.

On June 5, 2023, Sam and his team followed through and distributed backpacks to 125 students at Mr. Sathish Kumar’s school! Getting to see the kids’ own excitement from this great gift, Mr. Sathish Kumar was overwhelmed and so, SO grateful. He had been waiting to see his students receive help for years, although he had no idea who would actually help them. The help was finally delivered in the form of backpacks!

Getting a backpack distribution to happen is no small task. Our partners loaded all the backpacks and supplies into a van and drove six hours one way to the village to distribute them to these kids! It’s encouraging to us, to know that our partners are full of integrity and grit, and are being the hands and feet of Jesus to the local people. They know the needs of these communities, they see it, and they want to do something to help—so they do.

There was incredible excitement buzzing among the kids, which also excited Mr. Sathish Kumar. He wanted to remember this incredible moment for his students, for himself. He asked our partners to plant a tree sapling on the school grounds to help remember the moment! It’s a sweet symbol…the tree will grow bigger and stronger with time, producing fruit, just like these kids will grow in their education since they can attend with all the supplies they need in these backpacks.

To impact more students like Mr. Sathish’s, donate to our Backpack Project today!



By Featured, Project Stories

A Mom’s Hope to See Her Daughters Succeed.

As a parent, you want to see your kids succeed. I mean, you wouldn’t want to see them fail and struggle, especially if you felt the setbacks were because of you. Sometimes, this is how Sharma felt as a mom. She has two daughters—Avantika, a second-grader, and Anamika, a first-grader—and they attend a state-run school a mile and a half from their home in Sowlore, India. Their school performance wasn’t great… their teachers would scold them because the girls didn’t do their homework correctly, but that was because they didn’t have anyone to help them with it. Sharma desperately wanted to be able to help, but her work schedule made it practically impossible for her to give her daughters the time and attention they needed. She works late into the evenings as a manual worker in the fields, and she has to if she wants to make ends meet for her family. She has a husband, but he’s a daily wage worker and he also has another wife with kids, so he splits his time between the two households. Even when he is around Sharma and the girls, he doesn’t really care for their needs. This basically leaves Sharma on her own to provide for herself and her daughters.

Sharma was feeling the weight of it all for quite some time, and she felt the weight of her daughters’ struggles in school. She was sad there was no one around for them after school—sad she wasn’t around. She felt helpless in helping them. What could she do? She couldn’t decrease her work hours because that would put them in an even worse financial situation, and they already were struggling to make ends meet. But she also couldn’t let things continue in the same way they were going—her inner mama bear wouldn’t stand for it.

So when Sharma heard about The Hope Venture’s tuition center, she quickly signed her daughters up. They could go to the Jack Norman Memorial Hope Center in Sowlore after school in the evenings, where they could get homework help—for free!

Their grades at school began to improve and they were no longer getting in trouble for poor performance on homework assignments. Sharma found comfort in knowing her daughters were being cared for after school in a safe place, and took joy in knowing this was setting them up for success in their education. She’s so thankful for caring people at the center that support her daughters, and herself, in a way. Gone are the days of Sharma feeling guilty for her daughters’ poor performance in school. Instead, she’s hopeful and excited for their futures. Her big mama bear heart cheers them on as they pursue their dreams.


By Featured, Project Stories

Finding Dignity in the Process.

There’s always a soothing process that comes with creating something new. Maybe it’s dipping your paintbrush in the paint, then lifting your arm to drag the bristles across the page; listening to the rough scratch of a pencil on paper as you scribble out your thoughts; or for some, busting out the sewing machine, pumping the pedal until you’ve reached the end of the thread. It’s in these processes that we can often find relief, comfort, or can simply take a deep breath. The creative process has a certain sort of cathartic release, providing an avenue to overcome the challenges of life or a way to let out your emotions. Sneha is a girl who knows this process well, and holds it dearly, especially as she faced obstacles in her life.

Sneha has physical disabilities in her arms and legs, limiting her capacity to work in manual labor, which is a common career path for people from Perumpally, the village she’s from in the Jawadhu Hills region of India. This wouldn’t have been a terrible problem for her because she was in school and could aim for a career outside of manual labor. However, this was quickly no longer an option since she would have to leave Perumpally to pursue higher education, and her parents didn’t want to send her away because of her physical disabilities. Life would be difficult to navigate in a new place on her own with her disabilities, and they wanted to protect her. So Sneha stopped going to school after 10th grade, which left her feeling extremely disappointed. She felt as if she couldn’t contribute to anything, and her disabilities were blocking her from new opportunities.

But Sneha had a friend who told her about a free tailoring course provided by The Hope Venture. Sneha gladly attended the classes and learned the skills, and now she can stitch clothes for herself and for her parents. Her family used to hire someone to stitch all their clothes for them, but now Sneha can do it herself—how dignifying! Not only can she help her family, but she can also turn it into a career for herself. She thought there were no options for something like this—that she was stuck being limited by her disabilities—but attending the tailoring class showed her differently.

So Sneha gladly takes her seat in front of her sewing machine—because it’s dignifying to work and provide a source of income for her family—but also because it’s joyous to use her hands and feet, which had always been a limiting obstacle in her life but now are used to bring hope and dignity to her life. She gets to engage in the creative process, giving her an avenue to find an outlet of release, using the very parts of her that once caused her so much grief. It’s a way to work the anger and frustration of her disability out, and in the process, create a new life for herself as she creates new garments.

To impact more people like Sneha, donate to our Jawadhu Hills Project today!



By Featured, Project Stories

The Dignity of a Garment.

The soft whirring of a sewing machine floats throughout a small home in a slum in one of India’s largest cities, Bangalore. Vaideeshwari faithfully spends hours at her sewing table, dutifully stitching intricate details into the garments of clothing she is working on by piecing sections of fabric together, or tailoring the garment to be the perfect fit for the wearer. She toils on… but not aimlessly. No, Vaideeshwari has a real sense of purpose and dignity in her work. She doesn’t see each piece of clothing she completes as just a garment, but as something dignifying. It’s dignifying for the person who gets to call it their own and wear it, yes, but it’s also dignifying for herself.

You see, Vaideeshwari comes from a family that doesn’t have a lot. She and her husband are trying to raise two boys—one in kindergarten and one in third grade—but there was a time when they were struggling to make ends meet. Her husband welds for daily wages, but that means there’s no guarantee of work every day, and at the time, that was the family’s only source of income. The inconsistency was stressful for Vaideeshwari because she wanted to be able to provide for her family. She wanted to help, but she had no education, wasn’t trained, and therefore, couldn’t find any work. Her family was stuck in a cycle, scraping the bottom of the tank just to get by from wage to wage from her husband’s welding.

That was until Vaideeshwari heard about The Hope Venture’s Vocational Training Center where sewing and tailoring skills are taught to many women who are often in situations similar to her own. She eagerly began attending the classes and learned the tailoring skills she needed. Now she can sew, stitch, bind, cut, hem, line, and press! She often makes dresses for women and children, and because of her work, she is able to get income for her family.

Some day, Vaideeshwari dreams of opening her own tailoring shop where she can continue to put her newly learned skills to use as she sews and alters clothing. For now though, even without her own shop, the income she is earning from her handiwork is steady and supplements the income her husband may earn. They can better meet the needs of their family and work towards making sure their sons have an opportunity to complete their education. And this—the ability to work and provide for her family—is what makes the garments Vaideeshwari creates so dignifying as she stitches them together. They represent her opportunity to engage in the act of working to honorably support her family.

To impact more women like Vaideeshwari, donate to our India Tailoring & Computers Project today!