Pennies for Partnerships Distribution in McLeod ganj, India

Tashi Delek! Thanks to the Tibetan Women’s Association (TWA) and the 6th graders who attend Holy Trinity Interparochial School in Westfield, NJ who generously contributed the funds for the distribution in McLeod ganj, India. I would also like to apologize to the 6th grade class for the extended delay in finalizing the project. As well I want to express the wonderful gratitude and appreciation of those in the Tibetan community who received the gift of rice and also a copy of the lovely card you made.

The distribution in Mcleod ganj was focused on distributing to Tibetan refugees in need. TWA’s General Secretary Tsering Yangzom Oshoe and staff member Tenzin Deckyi administered the needs assessment to determine the beneficiaries in the community. Without their hardwork and effective research the project would have proven to be extremely difficult. They listed those most in need, located their homes, and contacted each beneficiary to let them know when we were planning to arrive. Also Dickyi was invaluable to the project as she knew how to reach all the homes in the most efficient time and she did all the translating.

The beneficiaries consisted of five families and four individuals. The families received a 55 pound bag of rice each with a copy of the card and the individuals received a 25 pound bag of rice and a card.

Due to the timely nature of completing the distribution before Holy Trinity school breaks for summer and wanting to provide an outcome for the students we changed the distribution to purchase rice from local Himachal Pradesh Indian farmers (purchased through the nice man at the market by my home) and we distributed to Tibetan refugees. Although this distribution was smaller than past rice distributions the logistics were much more complicated and took substantial time in planning, hence the delay.

The distribution found us getting a lot of good exercise as we made our way to the various homes up and down the Himalaya Mountain town. I discovered places in McLeod I had never been to as well we discovered some additional areas of concern that will be discussed with TWA to try to address the needs of one particular recipient.

Our final location took us to one Tibetan Nuns home; she had waited for several hours as the distribution was taking a great deal more time than we thought. She was very patient and very appreciative. She asked I write my name on the card as she expressed she wanted to pray for longlife for us. Thanks to TWA staff member Deckyi, she wrote down in Tibetan my name and the 6th grade class.

The Anni la (that’s how the Tibetans refer to the nuns) profusely thanked us, prayed over us and gave each of us a traditional Tibetan blessing with a khata scarf (white scare). She additionally gave one to me for the children of the 6th grade class of Holy Trinity while praying each time for longlife.

I think this was also a special moment in the day for the young Indian man Raju who labored for us. This is part of the community inclusion that the project offers.

Thank you to the students of Holy Trinity as this distribution was wonderful and very memorable. The Tibetan people are such an amazing community and I hope for you students someday you may experience the Tibetan culture yourself if you have not already. I know there is a large population in New York City so maybe you have been to some events.

I sincerely appreciate being your ambassador of giving and the messenger of your compassion and generosity.

May you each be blessed and have a wonderful summer break. Feel free to e-mail me at anytime.

As the Tibetans would say Thujeeche (Thank you).