Raleigh India

India ICS Blog

Welcome to the official Raleigh International blog for Raleigh ICS India! Here you will find regular updates, stories and photos of our life on expedition, the challenges and the impact of our sustainability projects on communities. Keep up to date with us and stay in touch by posting your comments below!

Namaskara for what I believe to be the penultimate blog post of this year’s India Yankee 2...!!

It is a few days into Phase 2 and all of our materials for construction have arrived! All of the foundations for the 15 participants of the toilets have been prepared and we are well on the way with our building!!

Phase 1 saw the establishment of a very solid and beneficial relationship with the local government, who will most likely be managing the long term upkeep of the toilets we build and kitchen gardens we are hoping to put in place before we leave. They are hopefully providing employment cards for the villagers, entitling them to better pay, and are aiming to aid the implementation of a government scheme whereby rural households can apply for money to build a toilet for themselves- a scheme that was yet to be seen in any of the villages in the Venkatagiri Colony area. As an extension of this relationship with the local government, a small team of both UKVs and ICVs visited the District Office when we visited Mysore for a few hours in Mid-phase Review. Amidst the excitement of there being a KFC in Mysore, and the opportunity to buy gifts for those at home, the meeting was a success and procured Yankee 2 the support that we were hoping for in order to sustain the work that we do before our time in the Venkatagiri Colony, and India, is up.

Read More

Namaskara to you, I’ll see you in a while. I’m sure time will fly so remember to smile....

After 5 days of reflection and training at Field Base, we travelled back, taking a detour alongside India Yankee 2 to Nanjangud and Chikkadevan Betta to visit their respective temples. We were met at Nanjangud temple by an elephant that blessed us with its trunk! The temple was typically Indian and reminded us of what a vibrant, diverse and beautiful country we are in, which is sometimes forgotten in the peaceful bubble of village life. The temple we visited was over 400 years old and offered a place of worship to many gods. As you walked towards a statue, the ritual was followed: a blessing followed by a bindi added to your forehead and a drink of holy water. It was a really great opportunity to experience Indian culture.

Read More

IR9 Celebrates Indian Independence Day

Friday 15th August marked the 68th year since India gained independence and IR9 team members enjoyed commemorating the day with villagers in Kottadai. The day begun early with team members decorating the local primary school grounds in coloured bunting, balloons and a Rangoli ground-mural of India, using colours of the Indian flag, all in readiness for the school celebrations, commencing at 9am. The children had excitedly informed us of the celebrations they had prepared for the day so as to ensure our prompt attendance at the school. There was a real air of excitement in the morning amongst village children and volunteers alike as everyone dressed in their best clothes (and pinned on the essential Indian flag) and appreciated the bright decorations, a real spectacle in the morning sunshine.

Read More

India Romeo 4 - Phase 2

After a few eventful days in fieldbase catching up with the other teams, hearing about their projects and a trip to Mysore, we returned to C.K.Palayam. With a warm welcome back and quickly unpacking, we set up the plans for the evening for the ICVs and villagers to share with the UKVs their traditional wedding ceremony. Following this, we all put our heads down and got a good night’s sleep before heading for our first day of construction.

Read More

India Romeo 3 - Phase 2

After a busy time at field base for phase review reflecting on our progress and preparing for our activities in phase two, we were very excited to return as a team to our village. With our primary and secondary projects finally confirmed we were keen to get going on construction and our awareness raising activities. Our primary project is focused on the tribal area of our village where we will build a community toilet and shower and an area for washing clothes. Part of our secondary project involves building a water tank for this area which will mean they have enough water to flush the toilet regularly – something which is very important for its maintenance. We have started working on the primary project by digging the foundations however progress has been slow due to delays in moving materials and the mason’s availability.

Read More