Ashadeep Advent Giving Tree 2021

Giving Tree AshadeepAgain, as in past years during Advent, the Justice and Service Committee focus thoughts and giving on the children of Ashadeep. This year once more, because of the Covid-19 protocols, our only fund raising is the Advent Giving Tree, but as mentioned in the previous update Ashadeep is more in need of our support than ever. 

The request this year is for a roti making machine to help the kitchen staff in their meal preparation for 200 children and staff. To make the chapattis
for morning breakfast, by hand, requires the staff to start cooking at 3:00 AM. There is also a need to purchase books for the school library, which last year we equipped with shelves, furniture, and laptops. 

The tree has been set up at the back of the church and will remain there all of Advent. As usual, it has been decorated with small gifts, including rosaries made by some of the children and priests of Ashadeep. Instead of buying a gift for someone, you can make a donation in their name and take an ornament to give as representative of the gift.

There are envelopes in which you can place your donation, cheque or cash, and these can be placed in the boxes at the back of the church or in the collection during Mass.

THANK YOU for your ongoing generosity in supporting Ashadeep for the last 13 years. The children and priests at Ashadeep are grateful for your support and keep the parishioners of St. Patrick’s continually in their prayers.


Ashadeep Update (Oct. 30, 2021)

Ashadeep Centre for the Disabled and St. Joseph’s School, like all of us, has had its share of problems because of the pandemic. While theAshadeep_Library170 children have been living at the orphanage, the school has been closed for 18 months.  It finally opened early September.  Fortunately, there have been no cases of Covid 19 as the Centre is in such a remote area and all teachers and staff have been vaccinated.

Library3 months ago, the Bore well for their water supply collapsed so there was a shortage of water; the electric transformer burned and there was an electrical shortage; heavy rains caused the boundary wall to collapse and there are the usual problems of transportation.  However, Ashadeep means Island of Hope and the community continues to move ahead with hope ever thankful for the support of St. Patrick’s community. Making Roti

Last year we sent $10,000 which was used to build shelves, furniture and provide laptops for the new library.  This year Fr. Jakson, the Director has asked if we can provide a roti making machine (a little bit like a bread making machine!). The kitchen staff (husband and wife and one helper) make 200 chapattis twice a day for the children.  This means they have to start cooking at 4:00 A.M.  The machine would reduce their hours considerably.  There is also a need to stock the library with more books.

We will once more be having our Giving Tree during Advent and welcome your generous donations.  There will be more information later.

For more information about Ashadeep and Premdham, please contact the Parish Social Justice Committee. If you would like to contribute to this program, you may do so by contacting the parish office.


Ashadeep & Premdham School and Orphanage - An Outreach of Love

For the past several years, St. Patrick's Parish has been supporting the school and orphanage, Ashadeep in Bujnor diocese in North India. Through the parish's Oktoberfest and BBQ and the Advent Giving Tree funds have been raised to buy cows, solar panels, computers, sewing machines, a school bus and money to start a poultry farm.

The idea of the poultry farm is not only to supply a food source for the orphanage but to eventually have an income from selling the eggs and an opportunity to teach older students, particularly the disabled, agricultural skills. The same applies to the dairy farm, which now has a herd of 40 cows providing more than 200 liters of milk every day. Attached to the dairy farm is a biogas unit which converts manure to provide enough fuel for the entire institution.

St. Patrick's also supported another institution in the diocese, Premdham. This is a home for young boys and men, physically and mentally disabled, abandoned by their families and are living in the streets. Some are terminally ill and also bed-ridden. Part of the funds raised by the parish went into buying an auto-ricksaw, which is very cheap to operate, and can be used to transport children and goods.

Video: Ashadeep Scouting Trip Video - January, 2012

The school of Ashadeep, St. Joseph's, integrates the disabled children from the orphanage into the regular classes. This is very rare in India where disabled people are often abandoned and neglected. There are 650 children in the school from 3 to 16 years old and, till now, the main language of instruction has been Hindi. In recent years, some classes were started where the language of instruction is English.

In 2013, the parish was able to raise funds to buy a school bus and school supplies. The school bus allowed young girls to be able to safely attend school and enabled children from the orphanage to seek medical care at the hospital which is 5 hours away.

In January, 2016, Barbara Galbraith made her eight visit to Ashadeep and spent two weeks working with the teachers in the English Medium kindergarten classes. This was rewarding, as the teachers are anxious to learn new strategies and approaches in the classroom. She also took a supply of Math materials to teach Math concepts, but also found that the school lacks any kind of children's books in English.

A small group of parishioners visited Ashadeep in November, 2016 (at their own expense), and established a small English book library in the school as they began to offer the English Medium program to the children. The books have been generously provided for by St. Patrick's parishioners from the Book Drive done over the summer of 2016!

Money collected for Ashadeep were sent directly to the school, without loss to fees to banks, the government or the local diocese. The funds were applied towards the purchase of tools and equipment to be used in teaching the children vocational skills, so that, though disabled and disadvantaged, they will have a hope of surviving, and maintaining a dignified life, when they are too old to remain in school.

On several occasions, Bishop Vadakel, with the priests and nuns who run the school and care for its children, have expressed their profound thanks for the interest St. Patrick's has taken in their school.

We thank the parishioners of St. Patrick's for providing much needed funds (and prayers) to support this cause!

For more information about Ashadeep and Premdham, please contact the Parish Social Justice Committee. If you would like to contribute to this program, you may do so by contacting the parish office.