Monthly Archives: May 2011

‘School Day’ in Nittur Primary School

‘School Day’ in Nittur Primary School

Hello, my name is Filiz and since March 2011 I am working in the Nittur Primary School. Right after the beginning of my year, the school celebrated the School Day.

Yet the two weeks before the whole school practiced singing and dancing. All children were excited and very motivated to present the school in a good light! Also the other German volunteer Melanie and me had to practice our speeches..

26th of March 2011: School Day!
My host sister helped me to put on my first Saree in the morning. Wow, what a procedure to put 5 meters of material around the body! Then I went to school. We were sitting on stage as guests of honor next to very important and famous persons and then we had to hold our speeches. Melanie did in Canada – and for that she really has got my whole respect :) After a long time of giving presents to everyone and speeches, the morning program finished.

At home: one Saree out, another on. Flower in the hair, Bindi on the forehead, earrings not to forget, necklaces and..uff, did i forget anything? oh yes, bangles !!! – yes, yes, yes, veeery important for Indian children! 😉 When I arrived at school directly a child told me that I forgot the bangles on the feet 😉

It was a paradise for me! The whole school was decorated with many colors, Indian music was played loudly, all children were running around with glittered and colorful costumes and the program was filled with all dances and songs. Wonderful! Also Melanie and me were enjoying the lively atmosphere … up to one moment… one teacher was coming to tell us that we were the next. WHAT??? Yes, we had really to sing “My heart will go on” without practice before. After 3 minutes we found ourselves on stage and started to sing 😀 ..And suddenly they played an absolutely other melody in the background! Horrible! After 2 minutes we gave up – but well, the children were happy! 😀

It was really on one hand a funny experience but I also have to say that I was very surprised of myself. I never would have sang a song in front of 500 people without practicing it before, in Germany. But here I just did it. Well it was not perfect, but we did it and we were proud of ourselves. :) Now I know, that I am able to do things like that and that it is so unimportant to give so much of your own energy in such banal situations. It was really a great day!
Ah, and two weeks after the School Day we were in the TV. 😉

I am very excited what the year will bring and teach me!

FSL- Work camps in March 2011

FSL- Work camps in March 2011

FSL hosted two work camps in March: Dharamsala in the north and Goa in the south of India.

In Goa, 16 volunteers from 8 different countries took part in the work camp. They taught the children games and English. Volunteers painted the walls of the orphanage building and also did some educational paintings. The volunteers also visited nearby places of cultural interest.


In Dharamsala, 20 volunteers from 9 different countries worked for two weeks in the school and one week was trekking to the beautiful mountain ranges of Dharamkot and Triund. The volunteers taught the children English and drawing, songs and dance etc. They did educational paintings about environment and hygiene, painted blackboards and pillars of the school.  The volunteers worked in a garden and play ground. On international cooking day, they cooked dishes of their country and shared them with each other.


New HBP Staff – Manjula Tallalli

New HBP Staff – Manjula Tallalli

Dear All

I am happy to introduced myself as a new staff member of FSL-India. My name is Manjula Tallalli and i’m from Haveri disrict Bankapur. I have completed B. Com degree from Karnataka Dharwad University. I have also completed my fellowship from Deshpande Fellowship Program (DFP) in Deshpande foundation at Hubli,. DFP helped me a lot by giving me technology skills, communication skills, management skills and social entrepreneurship skills. I am sure that these skills will help in my work place, to contribute to the success of FSL India.

I am very interested in reading, singing, and learning new things. I am also eager to have access to a large network on which I can rely to accomplish my goal. I have field experience like participating in N.S.S. camps. During the course of my degree, I have also worked in villages as a social worker. Now I am working in FSL India at the Kundapur centre as a Home Based Project (HBP) coordinator.

I believe that “Hard / smart working is the only way to reach our goal”.  I joined FSL India because the organization works for inter-culture learning, promoting peace, equality and democracy. By working in home based projects like Sea turtle conservation, Eco-tourism, Tent school, Eco-club and Environmental education – I can learn more about my own country and other countries through working with volunteers, schools and community.



Place: Silver Sand Beach Resort, Malpe

Date: 12th – 13th May

May month get together was held at a beautiful private beach resort at Malpe. The group was very active with 5 staff and 18 volunteers from different projects. The participants were from Bangalore(2 vols), Mangalore (5 vols), North Karnataka (6 vols), Hunsur (2 vols), Udupi(1 vol) and 2 vols from Kundapur.

May Arrivals

May Arrivals

FSL-India has welcomed 7 volunteers from 4 different countries in the first week of May. They been in a week of on-arrival orientation in FSL Guest House in Kundapur. One of the volunteer from Denmark will join a day of orientation on 19th May in Kundapur.

1ItalyCamilla StelltanoDEED, Hunsur
2IsraelShirly ElianManasa Jyothi, Japthi
3PortugalLuis CostaAyurveda Ayurdhama, Sullia
4FranceCindy KaemmerlenTent School, Kundapur
5FranceMarie VironTent School, Kundapur
6FranceJules MichelTent School, Kundapur
7FranceChady YounanTent School, Kundapur
8DenmarkHelen OrsoDEED, Hunsur







Preparatory meeting for health on stage project – Singapore

Preparatory meeting for health on stage project – Singapore

The Asia Europe Foundation (ASEF) and Coordinating Committee for International Voluntary services (CCIVS) have organised the Preparatory meeting for Health on stage project under10th Asia- Europe young volunteers Exchange. The program was organised from 19th -22nd April, 2011, at ASEF premises in Singapore. The program Health on stage will be focussing on Public Health through the use of Forum Theatre as a non-formal education tool.

The program will be hosted by FSL-India and implemented in one location in Tamil Nadu and two locations in Karnataka, focussing on Water related issues. Mr. C.Doreswamy, Joint Director of FSL- India represented the meeting and other participants include representatives from ASEF, CCIVS, Forum theatre experts and Health Experts.

Final Impression

Final Impression


Looking back to your expectations and goals, would you like to comment on your overall experience here?

It is impossible to imagine what will happen when you leave your home country. Despite of that I feel like my expectations are fulfilled. I became a part of the Indian culture, I came close to some very poor people and I saw the country from a non-touristic point of view.

Anne Sofie Høj Nielsen, Denmark, Tent School, Kundapur


Wouldn’t want to miss the experience.

Henriet Koffrie, The Netherlands Relief Foundation, Koppala


It have been a fantastic but challenging experience! Even though it has been hard, it is all worth it.

Karoline Westen Noer, Denmark, De Mercedes Orphanage, Mangalore


As I formerlyexplained I couldn’t expect various facts and events, but I think that my reaction was good.

Andrea, Italy, Infant Jesus Orphanage, Bangalore


My experience has been different respect what were my expectations, because I didn’t expect to teach, I didn’t expect to be in a catholic ambient, in a big city and with sick children. But these changes to my expectations had been not a problem, I felt good in this ambient and all the people we worked with had been really nice and good, FSL, the sisters and the children.

Anna Ciancio, Italian, Infant Jesus Orphanage, Bangalore


I tried not to come with expectations and tried to be as open minded as possible which helped my throughout this whole experience.

Giuseppe Tomarchio, Italian, Paraspara Trust Transit Home, Bangalore

Daya completes 5 years at FSL-India

Daya completes 5 years at FSL-India

Dear Readers – Our staff Mr. Daya Salins has completed 5 years with FSL-India. Over the years we’ve seen him blossom from an Assistant Team Leader to the Coordinator of the Workcamp department. He has played an active role in initiating and carrying forward our Sea Turtle Conservation program in Kundapur. On the occasion of his 5th year with FSL-India, we wish him the best and hope that he will continue to serve as a sincere and dedicated member of this organization. Here’s a few words from Daya, reflecting on his 5 years with FSL-India:













I am Daya Salins and I have completed my 5 years of service for FSL India this month. I joined FSL India on April 2006 as an assistant team leader and my first work camp was in Ponnampet – Coorg.  Since then  I have been the Team Leader for 45-50 work camps which gave me the best opportunity to know many people , learn a lot of good things from volunteers and exploring many places in India. Since 2008 I am coordinating the “sea turtle conservation” project as well as coordinating work camps.

Initially when I joined FSL  India, I found it very hard to communicate and deal with volunteers because I was talking very less. It took me almost 2 years to develop  communication skills for which my seniors and colleagues were very patient and  supportive. By attending many trainings and work shops, I can now handle my tasks and challenges more efficiently. Now I am confident to  independently conduct orientation sessions, school sessions, representing in workshops ,conferences and community events.

The best time of my work camp team leading experience is the camps in rural villages of  Jodhpur- Rajasthan. My best experience of the sea turtle project is  when I got a chance to attend the International sea turtle symposium at Goa  meeting all the people who are working for sea turtle conservation around the world. I am very grateful to  our president and director  for giving me the opportunity to represent FSL India at NVDA general assembly meeting organized by VYA Taiwan at Taisi – Taiwan. It is a memorable moment of my life where I had  great  time meeting and interacting with our Asian partners  and Taiwan students during this 2 week abroad trip.

Apart from attending International sea turtle symposium, I actively participated in TAG (Turtle Action Group) annual meetings.  TAG is a network of all the  NGO’s working for sea turtle conservation  along the west and east coast of India.

Being a staff and a host family of long term volunteers for five years, I am very proud to be a part of FSL India. Looking back to 2006 and now, I see a huge difference in the development of the organization and  people who are associated  with it. Being with international volunteers for so long brought many changes in my life and now I feel more responsible for the society. For instance, i don’t use plastic bags anymore  when I go shopping, I  use horn only in emergency while driving,  I donate my blood once in every 3-4 months for the needy people, helping few children for eduction and developed some hobbies like music and reading books during free time.

I feel these 5 years are the best time of my life though there were a lot of challenges. I have learned a lot of things from these challenges being with FSL India. I am still finding difficulties in developing the habit of saying  “NO” to people which has caused troubles for me on few occasions. I am very  thankful to all my colleagues especially our president Mr. Rakesh Soans and director Mr. Rohan D’ souza for their patience, support during difficult times and various opportunities given during these 5 years.

—-   Daya





Annika in Shanthi Ashram

Annika in Shanthi Ashram

My name is Annika and I am volunteer in Shanthi Ashram for one year. Having stayed in the project for 8 months up to now I try to give you a short overview of my project.

Shanthi Ashram is an orphanage situated in the village Vijayadka midst of the Indian forest. Our village consists of a high school, a primary school, a hospital, a church, a convent, a post office, few shops and the orphanage. Otherwise there are just mountains and lots of palm trees! Reaching this place means traveling two hours by bus from Mangalore.

At the moment there are 45 children in the age of 4 – 15 staying in the orphanage. Some of them have no parents at all anymore but most of the kids have a single parent who is not able to take care of the child on account of different reasons. The orphans are raised by Sister Luciana, having a strict daily schedule which involves several prayers before meals and a long evening prayer as well as duties like gardening and cleaning.

My daily schedule looks like this:
I get up at 7:30 and serve breakfast to the children. They eat rice and Sambaar three times a day. After having breakfast with the staff, I wash clothes and cut vegetables for lunch and dinner. Every day I am looking for work by asking my colleagues. Sometimes we have to harvest vegetables or fruits, weed the garden, cut wood for the fire or a bag full of chillies – there is always something to do!

From 10:30 – 16:00 I am teaching in the Primary School which is nearby. I am teacher of UKG and LKG (Upper and Lower Kindergarten) which momentarily consists of 7 children. Since it is an English Medium class, the kids are used to the English lessons. Nevertheless there are often communication problems because of their limited vocabulary. Although it was challenging I managed to adapt my lessons to their age after some time by involving games and creative tasks.

After school I am opening and grinding coconuts for the next day. Moreover I help to shower the small children which is always a little fight but lots of fun! In the evening there are 1 1/2 hours of study time for all the children. During these hours I am teaching, helping with homework or simply sitting and talking to the kids. Later we serve and have dinner, wash the dishes and clean the kitchen. The day ends about 9pm.

My daily schedule changed from time to time. There were times when I was working from morning to evening without any break and times when there was not enough to do. In general I can say that I learned and did a lot of things I didn`t do ever before. For example milking the cows or cleaning the cow`s stable – by hand!

I also learn a lot of things about nature: Just now I came to know how cashew nuts grow or how a pineapple plant looks like. Moreover I am impressed how we can use our environment without wasting too much – for instance all parts of our banana trees are used for cooking, leftovers feed our cows.

In the orphanage I am part of a team which at the moment consists of three female Indian colleagues, Sistser Luciana and another German volunteer. We come along well although there are sometimes language barriers since not everybody is educated in English and my Kannada is not the best either. But even though I am accommodated in the project, it feels like living in a huge host family because of a very familiar atmosphere.

The other volunteer and me share a nice room which has an attached bathroom and is actually quite new since the orphanage was renovated lately.

Although living here is very nice there are also some difficulties to face. It can be challenging to teach children and create lessons without a lot of material. Most of the kids own just a slate, chalk, a book for notes and a pencil – if you are lucky. That`s why it is helpful to bring some music, pictures, colours, books or material to do handicrafts. Anyway, I experienced that if you make a plan for a lesson, it never works out, so you have to be creative and improvise!

Something I won`t ever accept or get used to is the beating of children in school as well as in the orphanage. In the beginning it was very difficult for me to get to know their method of teaching and especially realizing that there isn`t anything I can do about it which was quite frustrating. I can`t see any good in violence against children but I also came to understand that I can`t change people`s minds.

Despite these difficulties I feel well in Shanthi Ashram! What I like most in my project are the children who I came to see as my little siblings. Although they don`t possess much they are so creative in inventing games and they are always friendly, funny and smiling! I still have 4 months to go but when leaving the project the experience I gained while living and working with these kids is something I`ll always remember.

Lots of greets from

(German volunteer, August 2010 – July 2011)