Our 2022 Year in Review
The Opening of the Newly-Renovated
Priyanka Singh Dormitory for Girls
at the Shanti Bhavan School
Priyanka Singh was a girl who we sponsored through our Children’s Fund but was suddenly taken from us in 2020 and found dead at her home in an impoverished area of New Delhi, India. We met Priyanka when she was about five years old, attending a slum school which had almost no resources to help the children there in their educational pursuits. When we met her, she was one of the only students who had no school uniform or even shoes. We quickly purchased a uniform for her and took some photos of all the children attending there. She was so happy to have a uniform that she quickly pushed many boys aside to get in the photograph (pictured left).
It was then that we recognized her spirit, her smile, and her tenacity and decided to send her to a better school so that she might have a chance to no longer live in poverty. That hope was snuffed out when she was 17. The dormitory we just renovated at the Shanti Bhavan School (pictured right) will house some 85 girls much like Priyanka who are striving to acquire a good education and eventually live out their dreams. This is something that Priyanka never got a chance to do, but at least now she is helping to benefit other girls along their way to success at a dormitory that bears her name.
A School Where One Never Existed
The Daystar School in Namalemba, Uganda, has been a dream for Dr. Irene Ganiriza. Namalemba was the village where she grew up and, although orphaned at a young age, with the help of some friends and a love for education, she went on to become a doctor and today runs a medical clinic in her community. Recently, we learned that as a child she had to travel many miles to go to school because her village had no school for the hundreds of children who lived there.
Today, with Dr. Irene’s help and guidance, we have built a school for 275 children in her village (ages four to eight) who finally have a school to go to every morning and maybe, like Dr. Irene, will become doctors or anything they wish. Dreams, after all, can come true. The school opened in the spring of 2023.
An Example of Giving Back:
The Grand Opening of the Zilla Parishad High School
Mr. Bobba Venkatadri (who sits on the Board of TFI) grew up in a small village in Southern India, where he attended a public grammar school with few resources. Nevertheless he was a stellar student who went on to college and came to America and became a successful business entrepreneur.
Some eight years go, when nearing retirement, Bobba decided to return to India and visit that little school he attended, which in many ways gave him his start in life. After seeing the crumbling school and the children who were yearning for so much more, Bobba, with the help of TFI, embarked on an effort to build these children a new school. It opened in June of 2022, and today these children have a state-of-the-art school, thanks to one man’s willingness to share his good fortune and give back.
The old school building is pictured on the left, while the brand new school is on the right.
Visiting Some of Our Children's Fund Students
as They Get Ready to Graduate
With some travel restrictions easing up over the past year, we took the opportunity to begin to travel again. In June, our Director of Operations, Jennifer Zahgkuni, traveled to Ghana (West Africa) to visit with four of our Children’s Fund students. We have been sponsoring them since we found them working in an E-waste dumpsite nearly ten years ago during the making of our book, Living on a Dollar a Day. Today, two have graduated from high school and are working toward their future careers and two are graduating next year.
Solomon (left) and Fatima (right) are pictured working at the dumpsite as children, as well as today with Jennifer (middle) as they prepare to take exams to continue their education. Solomon wishes to become an engineer, while Fatima is still considering her options. But working at a dumpsite is no longer their only future.
TFI Sponsors a New Program in Peru
Kantaya means “enlightened” in the Peruvian indigenous language of Aymara.
Kantaya provides an after-school education enrichment program for 400 children at three locations in one of the poorest areas of rural Peru. At these centers, the children (ages six to sixteen) work on their reading, math, and language skills, as well as take art, dance, and computer classes. They also develop their social-emotional skills while learning about matters outside of their local community. The program helps build up the children’s self-esteem and the confidence they will need to successfully advance in school and hopefully go on to college and leave the poverty they were born into.
It is an amazing program which, after nearly 20 years of service, seems to have developed a formula that works. Tom Nazario visited this organization on a recent field visit to Peru.
Please consider making a tax-deductible gift to TFI
so we can continue serving impoverished women
and children in 2023.
The Forgotten International
P.O. Box 192066, San Francisco, CA 94119 • 415-517-6942
The Forgotten International is 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Tax ID 26-1484826.
All donations are deductible to the fullest extent of the law.