One time a year Rising Star Outreach has the opportunity to host the BYU Nursing Program in India. These nurses are here for three weeks to learn, teach and assist those in need that are affected by leprosy. They are put to work in the colonies and on campus and they travel to far away leprosy colonies to deliver aid and education.
Here is the group with the addition of some special guests from Texas and President Sally Read and guests.
Everyday they spent here was a marathon of duties. From vaccinations, medical trips, hospital visits and tours to student physicals.
These nurses have talent! They are able to administer the majority of immunizations and other testing that involve finger pricking, without tears or unnecessary fear.
I think one of their tricks were Spiderman Band-Aids... they love superheroes!
Education for the Rising Star children included: First Aid, CPR, Snake Bite Care, Personal Hygiene and many more.
Thank you to the BYU Nursing group for your expertise, knowledge, care and most of all time. We are very grateful for your service to keep our patients healthy and our student. You spent many hours in the care of others and we appreciate the work you have done here.
Villivakkam is a colony that is located in a neighborhood in Chennai. This is a larger colony that usually hosts the meetings of the colony leaders from the surrounding areas.
After fixing the well at Vandalur we went directly up to this well as we heard that they had a problem with one working, again for over a 2 year period. We had some supplies and hope that we could fix it that afternoon ...
When we arrived we were greeted with happy faces and a group of kids and LOTS of rain. It rained for almost the entire time we were lifting out the pipes. When we started to pull everything out of the hole we noticed that the pipe was disintegrating under our touch. The pipe was so rusted and we were unable to separate the pipes and we started sawing them apart. Piece by piece we pulled out until we got to the cylinder at the bottom, which as you can see... was a mess.
We had pipes, that was no problem. We had all the supplies but we did not have another cylinder, so the team went off to purchase another while others remained behind and separated and cleaned up what we could to speed up the assembly process as night was quickly approaching.
This time also gave us an opportunity to get to know the colony we were working in. We met artists, mothers, preachers, students, family members of our Students, Presidents and more. This colony welcomed us to their home and it was a blessing to us as we continued to spend most of the day and night with them.
The women were waiting for the city to deliver drinking water to the colony. They wait with their containers for the morning and night delivery. They have one tank for each. These tanks supply drinking water for hundreds. The well we are fixing will allow more of that drinking water to be used for drinking rather than other household needs. It will be another source if there is ever a delay or interruption in their water delivery. They were anxiously waiting for us to be finished so they could start using it.
Once the group returned looking for the cylinder we found that they could not find the one that we needed... this means that we needed to use the old one if possible. Disassembly took place and all the grime and materials on the outside and inside were removed. When finished, it looked just like new. Assembly was done quickly, except for adding on the pump head. It needed to screw on but the threads were worn and had to be done with care.
When it got time for the handle we put it together with the items that were on it and the handle was really shaky. The handle was missing bearings that will keep the handle stable and easy to move. So to make sure that the well was properly done, and wouldn't break right after we left we sent another team out to get bearings.
In the mean time we spent time with the locals. We had a dance party with the kids, had tours of homes and churches, we were given drinks and were able to sit and talk. It didn't take long for Cody from People Water to be re-named John Cena from the WWE. You could hear all the kids yelling John Cena throughout the neighborhoods.
When the group buying supplies returned we found that the bearings didn't fit! One of the old rings from the last bearing was left inside. Cody tried everything from hammers to chisels to remove. That's when a local welder came in and saved the day. He removed the inside ring and fit the new bearings. Once those were added in the final adjustments were made and the pump was active and working. Cheers when up all over the colony when the colony President pumped the first drops of water.
After hours of work, play, rain and continual problems the well was functioning. The smiles and pure gratitude that we saw on their faces made every moment worth it. Thank you to People Water's Cody Barker, Jeremy Cannon (Photographer), people in the Villkivakkam Colony and all the Rising Star Employees and Volunteers that made this moment possible. Hundreds of people will benefit from this work and more will benefit from the training that we all received.
If you want to hear more about this adventure from Mr. Cody Barker pease visit the People Water Blog by clicking HERE.
If you want to hear more about this adventure from Mr. Cody Barker pease visit the People Water Blog by clicking HERE.
This well started off as a scouting trip. We heard that they were having a well problem and when we showed up they had two hand pump wells. One was the governments well that was broken, and then there was this one. Another NGO had placed this well but it has sat broken for years.
After talking with them we got access to the old materials and assessed the situation. We couldn't have done it with out the Rising Star Outreach Social Worker Vincent. He was essential to our success.
|Cody talking with Vincent so he can translate for the colony President.|
|Cody is checking the depth of the well.|
From here we purchased the items needed for the project in a local hardware shop, where again Vincent was a major help. We returned on Tuesday to finish the job.
This out of the three projects that we completed was the simplest... and that's not saying too much. It seems that not matter what project there is there is always something that needs adjusting.
We outfitted this well with a new cylinder, pipes, rods and kept the original pump stand, handle and pump head.
Sankar is one of the Rising Star Outreach Drivers, today he doubled as a master plumber. He was in charge of re-setting the pipe clamp for each section.
We got the colony leaders involved. Above is a picture of the Colony President who came out to help. He and the Secretary were willing and helpful each step of the way.
Cody, from People Water said that one of the main reasons that these pumps break is because the pump chain doesn't stay greased. He had the President apply a generous amount to make sure that this one lasts.
After a little bit of work and time, we were able to complete the well and now the colony has a working well. After a few days of pumping and use the water will be fresh and clean.
Here is our group of helpers. If you look close you can see some kids from Rising Star. They were home for the day taking family pictures. It made the day even more special.
|Jeremy Cannon and Naveen. People Water's Photographer for the trip.|
The first well project with Rising Star Outreach and People Water was located in the leprosy colony of Walajabad. This is a small colony started in 1972 with a population of about 54 people, 12 of which have leprosy, leaving 42 others without. There are 14 total families who live without proper water, toilet and electrical facilities. We are here to help with their water issues, with the assistance of People Water's Cody Barker.
The day started off with high hopes of fixing this well in just a few hours. This feeling changed when we did not have access to the tools needed. Each step of this well was challenging! From removing the rusted bolts by saw, no clamp to hold the pipe we were raising to a lack of wrenches or spinners as the Indian's call it.
We decided to use the wrenches to lift and hold the well pipes while the other part of the team went looking for a clamp option. With a lot of faith in our wrenches we lifted the pipe and leveraged it with the wrenches.
Soon help arrived from a local plumber working down the road. He brought a clamp to hold the pipe and we proceeded to lift out the old pipes until we reached the one with the problem. The problem was a long thin crack that kept the water from reaching the top of the well.
From here things went a little smoother. Together the pipes were welded, replaced and lowered back into place.
Our Construction Coordinator, Nery was in the tree helping to stabilize the pipe and to keep it from getting caught on the branches.
After everything was lowered into place, the parts were assembled into the pump for the final test... would it work?
Success! The Walajabad Colony now has a working pump that will soon be supplying the colony with clean water, whenever they need it.
Thank you to People Water, Cody Barker, Rising Star and their team as well as the colony and locals that came to our aid. Without all involved this project would not have been possible.
What a great first day of school we had! The students were very excited to begin classes at the Peery Matriculation School, and the day began with a few words from Principal Xavier.
Principal Xavier welcomed the students back, and congratulated the entire school for doing so well on their end of the final exams, especially the 10thstandard girls who passed their exams with 90% or higher. He also emphasized that this year the whole school would focus on speaking English properly, and more frequently by having all of the classes and announcements in English. Finally Steel, our Chief Operations Officer, said a word to the students about how promising their future can be through their personal dedication to education and commitment to always doing their best. The students excitedly ran off to their classrooms, where they became acclimated with their new teachers, classrooms, and several new students.
Each standard passed out books and materials need for the upcoming year, went over the schedule, and discussed several new programs that would be implemented. Some of the students had the chance to stop by the library on their first day where over 10,000 books are categorized and logged into the computer system.
Finally many of the classes were able to have the once a week dance class on the first day of school, it was so much fun. The UKG, 1st , 3rd , and 5th , standards did a wonderful job and many look forward to being part of the life dance team.
We are very much looking forward to what the 2013-2014 school year has in store for us. Through education one can take hold of their future and achieve their dreams. We are so proud of our Rising Stars!
-- Rosie Tempka (Summer 2013 Education Coordinator)
More from the First Day of School
|Opening words from Mr. Xavier|
|8th Standard Boys Line|
|Mr. Xavier welcoming the new Rising Star students.|
|Introduction to the Computer Lab for the new students.|
|Doing their duties.|
|PT Time for the older girls.|
|6th Standard in class|
|Motto for the year from Sally Read|
Rising Star Outreach was represented once again at the Youthjamz 4th Annual Concert event! This was definitely their biggest and best concert yet! The event was held at the famous Del Mar Fairgrounds. It was truly a spectacle complete with five amazing and energetic bands, tasty food, raffles, prizes and cheese on a stick! Over 500 tickets were sold and the place was packed with people. Dedicated sponsors, volunteers and an energetic crowd came to support Rising Star Outreach and enjoy good music, crazy antics and delicious licks from The Maine, The Ready Set, Night Riots, Tomorrows Bad Seeds and the Mid-Summer Classic. Erin Moore and Amy Humphrey were in attendance to show support and provide information about Rising Star Outreach.
This incredible event was organized by two amazing teens, Jenna and Noah Lizerbram. Jenna and Noah love good music and believe that music is the universal language with the power to heal. The past three years they have supplied instruments, materials and instructional books to bring Music Education to Rising Star! They personally visited our campus recently to see the grateful faces of the children and, of course, fell in love instantly!
Thank you to the Lizerbram family for providing the gift of music and to all the people who came out to see the show. Youthjamz is getting a lot of attention. Jenna and Noah are invited guests to the Roger Hedgecock show!!! Next… Jay Leno? Ellen? Please visit their Facebook page and show your support!
If by chance you are in Southern CA in May 2014, make plans to attend next year’s concert – you don’t want to miss this!
Rising Star is very excited to have the help from People Water to restore water pumps to our leprosy colonies here in Southern India. Here is just a piece of what Cody Barker (Chief Water Giver) has to say about his first day in the field.
"The first colony has an open well which is about 40 feet deep and 30 feet across, which basically means this thing is massive. Second, there is a pipe that the government put in, but it is regulated so that they are only able to use that pump for two hours a day. Thirdly the colony has a well that hasn't been working for two years. We figured that the smartest thing to do would be to fix the pump that is broken."
To read more about Cody's adventure and see what Rising Star Outreach and People Water are doing together CLICK HERE
Here are some of the people in the Wallajabad Colony that we are helping get clean water.