Sophia Packs for a Purpose in India

 

My name is Sophia Dhupar and I am ten years old.  I am a fifth grader at Frontier Academy Elementary School in Greeley, Colorado.  Last year, my family decided to travel to India, the birthplace of my paternal grandmother and grandfather. Prior to our trip, I got the idea to collect school supplies for students who could use them, but not necessarily afford them.

I met with my principal several times during, before, and after school to discuss how to collect the supplies. I sent out fliers and made announcements that helped spread the word of my collection to parents, teachers, and students. The fliers gave suggestions of what to donate, and I was so happy with all the donations we received. I collected all of the school supplies at the end of our 2016 to 2017 school year. The end of the school year was a good time to collect since students were throwing away all of their old items that they had used that year.

I set out boxes at each of the entrances of my school where kids could deposit their old school supplies.  My parents and I decorated each of the boxes.  The containers said “DONATE SCHOOL SUPPLIES”.  Every day, I went to each of the entrances with my parents and collected what had been placed as donations in the decorated boxes. We received donations of crayons, pencils, pens, glue sticks, liquid glue, pencil boxes, pencil sharpeners, markers, lined paper, notebooks, scissors, and even a backpack.

We traveled to India over Thanksgiving break during the following school year. This was six months after I had collected the school supplies.  The plane ride to India took 22 hours. On our journey to India, we took 300 pounds of school supplies in six suitcases. Once we arrived in India, I was so excited to take the materials to Reality Tours and Travel – Delhi for the project they support, the Sanjay Colony Community Center. I found them on the Pack for a Purpose website. The staff at Reality Tours and Travel – Delhi were very accommodating to our hectic travel schedule.  Unfortunately, my family and I dropped off the school supplies on a Saturday, so we were not able to meet the children.

 

In New Delhi, the materials were distributed at the Sanjay Colony Educational Community Center.  In fact, there were enough items that a second needy school outside of New Delhi also received some of our donations.

There is a tremendous need in India for food, shelter, and materials of all sorts.  It made me feel good to know that I was helping an area in such need.  If you would like to help people in need you can just provide a small amount, and it will make a gigantic change to others’ lives.

The local students, teachers, and parents played an important part of my project.  If I didn’t have such generous people in my home community, then I definitely would not have been able to provide what I did for the children in India.  Also, I want to thank Pack for a Purpose for providing such an important service for the people of the world.

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