Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Pardada Pardadi

Back in March, I was contacted by Shaista Chaudhry from Virginia. She wrote:
I have recently become involved in a charity near New Delhi and had an opportunity to spend two short weeks there during the 2008-09 winter break. The charity called Pardada Pardadi is a K-12 school for 1000 rural girls from the most underprivileged section of society, located in Anupshehr in the Bulandshehr district in UP. Since my return to the U.S. I have dedicated an hour each day to explore ways of enhancing the charity's mission.

That got me where my heart sat, in more than one way. Pardada Pardadi is a Hindi term that translates directly into English as "great-grandparents". The term is used as an analogy to the ancient Indian wisdom that knowledge and education from your family contributes to the full blossoming of an individual. And when your family doesn't have enough, anyone and everyone who can, ought to step in.

And then that other point Shaista made: an hour a day. What a thought. What if we all spent an hour a day to think about others, to think about the planet, to think of doing good in small, practical ways?

I sent a box of books and here they are two months later, in the girls' hands.


  1. Uma,

    Bunlandshehar! My mother's family is from that part of U.P. I was born in Meerut (where my Nani lived) as were all my sisters. I have to, HAVE TO, look into this charity. Thanks for all you are doing for them, and for blogging about it, so I could come to know of it too!


  2. I haven't done all that much, Nandini, but every small action helps.

  3. Wonderful picture, Uma. Yes, an hour can be golden.

  4. What a beautiful thought : one hour a day to think about others than ourselves, one hour a day to help the world in some way. And that picture ! When a book travels that way, it gives me shivers, and it doesn't matter whether it's my own or someone else's. Thank for sharing, Uma.

  5. Hi Uma,

    As always, I'm behind in reading blogs but I found this article quite gripping. Can you share contact information with this charity? I would love to send books or something too.

  6. me again - scratch that - I realized the name of the charity was a link so I just followed that. Thanks for posting about it.