A Poem for Street Children
A big thank you to HOPE Supporter Tracey Smart for her moving poem about the realities faced by street children on the International Day for Street Children.
Protecting our children, little angels of life,
Abandoned, Orphaned, Kept in awful conditions,
Bad Situations, Confused and Vulnerable,
Looking for answers, No Shelter, No Refuge,
No escaping dangers, Predators, Groomers,
Abusers these monsters stealing their rights,
Of Protection and Chances,
Their Childhood stolen away.
Not encouraged to play, Starving on streets,
In war-torn countries, no shoes on their feet,
Or amongst our addicts and alcoholics
No food on the table and waking up sick,
Search your heart, Search your soul
Let the love start, Rise like the Sunshine
Not fall like the tears
Of Diseased Sick Babies, Full of Fears.
Tiny little feet taking steps into life,
Tiny little hands reaching up to the sky,
Tiny little arms reaching out for a cuddle,
Tiny little legs stepping out into trouble.
With stars in their eyes, but not for long,
Soon to realise, they’ve been born into wrong,
Treated like criminals or rabid dogs,
Misguided not nurtured, Emotionally scarred.
From the outset life is so hard
Never stop worrying, never stop wondering,
Keep on educating ALL the children in the world,
Never stop denying, Love or they’ll be crying,
We are all relying on the Children of this world
Crossing the Pennines for HOPE
HOPE supporter Sarah-Jane Wood is trekking from Manchester to Sheffield over 24 grueling hours as part of the Trans Pennine Challenge on June 22/23. She is also raising money for HOPE as she does so.
Please support Sarah-Jane (and HOPE) for this 50km challenge across the difficult Pennines terrain. You can support her here.
London brothers crossing India in a three-wheel rickshaw for HOPE
London brothers Dan and David Bradshaw are heading off on the adventure of a lifetime - a two-week 3,500km journey across India in a three-wheel, seven horsepower rickshaw. On September 8th 2013, they will set out from Shillong in the mountains of North East India and head west for Jaisalmer by the Pakistan border.
And they are doing it to support The Hope Foundation. 50% of money raised through their Virgin Money account will go to HOPE to further our work with street and slum children in Kolkata (the other 50% going to support another charity).
Make sure you support the Bradshaw brothers, and keep an eye on what is sure to be a very interesting progress across India!
HOPE UK Trustee wins Irish philanthropy award
The Hope Foundation UK would like to extend our warm congratulations to Maireád Sorensen, chairwoman of Butlers Chocolates, has won the Irish International Philanthropist of the Year Award for her work with The Hope Foundation in Kolkata.
The awards were established by The Community Foundation for Ireland to shine a light on the extraordinary generosity and leadership of Irish philanthropists.
Maireád Sorensen epitomises the qualities of both leadership and generosity through her involvement with The Hope Foundation since it’s founding in 1999, now acting as vice chair for the organization and a trustee for HOPE UK.
An active agent of change, Maireád travels to Kolkata with her children annually to visit HOPE’s projects, to meet with the staff and to help promote the cessation of human rights abuses which HOPE challenges on a daily basis.
She now joins other well known Irish philanthropists such as JP Mc Manus, Mark FitzGerald, Declan Ryan and Chantal McCabe in being awarded the accolade of Philanthropist of the Year.
Speaking after the ceremony, she said she was “both very proud and at the same time humbled” to receive such a prestigious award.
“My involvement with The Hope Foundation has been an exciting journey and has really enriched my life in so many ways. It is a wonderful organization and I am proud to have been associated with it for 13 years.
The need in Calcutta is ongoing and great. HOPE works with some of the most disadvantaged children in the world today, children who are exposed to horrendous neglect and abuse on the streets in abject poverty, left to fend for themselves with no one to take care of them.
Hope makes a huge difference in the lives of the children under its care and looks after them with love, kindness and great tenderness. I am always amazed at how wonderful the work and the projects are, every time I visit. It is such an inspiring organization and I am glad that The Hope Foundation is in my life."
Read the full story here.
Hope Kolkata Director wins prestigious award
Hope UK would like to congratulate Hope's Kolkata Director Geeta Venkadakrishnan on winning the prestigious Karmaveer Puraskaar Global Award for her commitment to supporting the developing street communities of India over the past decades. The Karmaveer Puraskaar Global Awards, instituted by iCONGO (the International Confederation of NGOs), seeks to celebrate and inspire individual citizen social responsibility, justice and action initiatives.
Jeroninio Almeida, the founder and chief volunteer of iCONGO, has described the awards as:
“In a country of almost 1.2 billion Indians, we have many awards for movie stars and other achievers but we are yet to recognise the real-life unsung heroes who believe that it is better to light a candle than curse the darkness by leading a change. Karmaveer Puraskaar is given to change dreamers and doers who practice philanthropy for social justice”.
In response to the award, Ms. Venkadakrishnan said:
“I would like to thank my family, my mentor Maureen Forrest (who I was lucky to meet when I was just 24 years old!), Father Godfrey Fernandes who introduced me to Mother Teresa when I was just 15 years old and to Asia’s biggest Leprosy Centre for allowing me to volunteer and reach so far in my life.”
We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Geeta on this fantastic achievement and thank her for the tireless work she does with the HOPE Kolkata Foundation.
HSBC smash target for Hope Cycle
A big 'thank-you' to the HSBC Credit Approvals team who, in locations across Britain and Kolkata, took part in the virtual Cycle for Hope. They virtually cycled all the way across India and half-way back to support Hope (more than 3000 miles), with the money they raised going to support the Kasba Girls Home.
The Kasba Home takes care of more than 70 girls from the streets of Kolkata, and gives them the chance of a brighter future.
A big thank you to everyone who took part or donated to this wonderful event.
Photos from Hope Foundation's 2012 London Lunch
A big thank you to all those who attended, supported or volunteered at the Hope Foundation 2012 London Lunch, held at the Dorchester Hotel on the 4th of October.
The Hope Foundation was able to raise more than £27,000 from the event, which will go to support our Boys Home in Kolkata and provide care, protection, education and love to more than 40 little boys.
HSBC partners with HOPE to support Kasba Girl's Home
The HOPE Foundation is delighted to partner with HSBC in the United Kingdom.
Led by the Canary Wharf Risk Management team, HSBC teams across the United Kingdom and India will work together to raise funds for the Kasba Girl's Home, which protects, feeds and educates more than 70 girls in Kolkata.
These teams will take part in a virtual cycle race across India - more than 1860 miles! Over 50 HSBC staff will take part in this event during early October.
If you want to support the virtual cycle, find the just giving page here.
Mystic India HOPE Kolkata and Darjeeling Tour
_The Hope Foundation is a new charity partner of Mystic India, the India travel specialists.
Mystic India is offering a bespoke tour to Kolkata and Darjeeling, which includes spending a day visiting our projects and learning more about what we are doing to assist street children. We will receive a donation from each HOPE tour, as well as a donation for every customer who finds Mystic India through our website! Find out more here.
Maureen Forrest nominated for the first Street Child Champions Awards
The Honorary Director of the Hope Foundation, Maureen Forrest, has been nominated for the first ever Street Child Champions Awards 2011, run by the Consortium for Street Children.
The awards honour unsung heroes who are making a real difference to street children's lives. Since 1999, when she founded the Hope Foundation, Maureen has dedicated her life to assisting street children in Kolkata. She works tirelessly on a voluntary basis. The organisation has grown to employ over 700 members of staff, almost all of whom are based in India, and currently assists 18,000 street children to access protection, education and healthcare.
If successful, Maureen will donate the £1,000 prize money to our project assisting young girls to move away from the sex industry to safe forms of income generation, in which they are supported by self help groups and their peers.
Daring to Dream - the work of the Hope Foundation in India, by Ethel Crowley
“Amidst the poverty, hope is the one thing that abounds in the slums of Calcutta. Not only in the spirit of the people, but in the remarkable achievements of a small Irish organization, ‘The Hope Foundation’”, (Jennifer May, The Big Issue Ireland).
The book is an Insightful, detailed, written and photographic examination of all of the Hope foundation’s projects in Calcutta. Dr Ethel Crowley writes “You cannot describe India, especially Calcutta, until you see it with your own eyes”.
Daring to Dream is now available to buy from the Hope Office, for £20 plus postage. For more information please email us or call 0844 478 0778.