Sunday, December 20, 2009

Doing Homework

And here she is studying hard:

Daily Routines

More pictures of Meher:

Posing with her school bag


Using the computer

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Next Step

Meher is now fully recovered and studying hard everyday for her entrance exams to boarding school! She needs one more operation to on her left hand before she starts school, and we are preparing to have that operation next month. She is doing wonderfully; as you can see, she is as happy and healthy as ever. Here she is wrapped up against the cold as classes at the Women Centre are on the roof and semi-exposed year round.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Another Successful Chess Tournament

On Saturday, November 7th, a chess tournament was held at Grove Avenue Elementary School by Yury Shulman's Chess Without Borders. There were 150 children competing in the tournament, and countless other volunteers, parents, and helpers who made this possible. Proceeds from the tournament will go towards Meher's next surgery. Special thanks go to Eleanor, our student project director, and all of our volunteers!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Studying Hard

Meher's hands are completely healed now, and she is using them to do school work. She still goes for physiotherapy twice a week, but is actively using both her hands and doing very well. She will need another operation to finish straightening her left hand, so we are planning to do that in December, after which she will be all set to start formal school!

(Belated) Happy Diwali!

Meher celebrated Diwali on October 17th with her friends at the Women's Centre. All of the children enjoyed the festivities and even did some sparklers on their own! Meher was especially happy as her good friend Utpal was home from school for the holiday! Here are some pictures from the party (you can see Meher is dressed up for the occasion.)

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Back at Home

Meher is back at home with her mother and new baby brother! She is very excited to see her mother again and have a new brother. She is staying with them and is no longer at the Women's Centre during the night.
Her bandages have been taken off as her hands are healing quickly, but she is still wearing small braces on both hands and will need physiotherapy for some time now.

As you can see from the picture below, she is much freer now without the huge bandages!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Congratulations to Yury Shulman's Chess Without Borders!

Yury Shulman's Chess Without Borders is a Finalist for the 2009 Chicago Innovation Award! On Monday, September 14th, a reception honoring the nominees was held. GM Yury Shulman and his co-author, Rishi Sethi, are pictured above. They have decided to donate proceeds from the sale of their book, Chess Lessons From a Grandmaster, towards the additional surgeries Meher will need in a few months (her hands still need another procedure). Thank you to Yury and Rishi for all of your support!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Meher is in high spirits and doing well. As you can see, both of her hands are bandaged (please excuse her attire- its still quite hot and sticky in New Delhi, and with two big casts on her arms, she is feeling the humidity!), so she requires a lot of care and help these days. But she is feeling fine and probably enjoying the attention!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Successful Operation Yesterday

Dr. Khazanchi operated on both of Meher's hands yesterday, fixing the already operated on left hand to avoid more contracture, and straightening two fingers on her right hand. He took some skin grafts from her leg, but as it is a shallow wound, her leg will heal quite quickly. She is at home now and is doing well. Everyone is relieved as all the surgeries are finally over!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Operation on Right Hand

Dr. Khazanchi is operating on Meher's right hand today! She is recovering well from her last surgery and already went in to have the drain removed, and yesterday went in to have her stitches taken out. She is happy and in high spirits as usual.

Also, Meher has decided that she wants to marry Utpal! He is the little boy who also recovered from severe burns as an infant. He is in boarding school, but often stays at the Women's Centre during his vacations. He is currently away from at boarding school, so she must be missing his company. She declared she wants to marry him as he is kind to her, gives her sweets, and lets her watch TV!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Home and Well

Meher is back at home and resting, she is awake and well, although still recovering. Here are some photos of her after surgery and back at the Women's Centre.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Before and After Pictures!

Here are some before and after pictures taken by Dr. Khazanchi before her initial surgery (so pre-expanders) and after her second surgery.

I heard from Dr. Khazanchi so now I have first hand details about Meher's surgery yesterday: it went well, they were able to reconstruct almost the entire scalp. Meher was kept overnight in the hospital, but already returned to the Women's Centre today (Wednesday). She is resting, but is otherwise fine. They were only able to operate on her scalp yesterday due to respiration complications with the anesthesia, so Meher will return to the hospital in about six weeks for the surgery on her right hand.

Successful Surgery!

Meher's surgery took place this morning at Ganga Ram Hospital. The surgery went well, and she is now recovering in the inpatient ward.

Here are some pictures of her from a few days ago, being intellectual!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Surgery Date

The date for Meher's second surgery is set for next Tuesday, August 25th. She will go to the hospital for pre-operation procedures on Monday. The date is later than expected due to concerns about infection, but now she is perfectly healthy and everyone is ready to go ahead.

As you can see, she is as active as ever and in good spirits!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Enjoying the Visitors

Meher is really enjoying herself with all the volunteers at the Women's Centre!

Here she is playing with one of the teachers there.

And here she is with some of her classmates!

She is doing well and her surgery will take place later this month!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Last day of Expansion!

Meher's last day of expansion was Friday, July 31st. She is completely ready for her second surgery. This time around she is better prepared in terms of knowing what to expect, and her recovery time will be much shorter as the surgery needed for her right hand is far simpler than the complete reconstruction that was done on her left hand.
Some Project Why volunteers are staying at the Women Centre, and Meher is really enjoying their company. She is also keeping them constantly amused, as you can see by this video of her dancing!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Utpal's Leaving Party

Utpal is heading back to boarding school, so for his last dinner the menu included ice cream and kebabs! Meher will miss him as he was her constant companion and playmate, and looked after her like an older brother.

Meher is doing well, especially as the weather has improved after the rains finally came so things cooled down a little bit! Her expansion will continue until the end of the month and her second surgery is now scheduled for mid-August.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Goodbye Party and Gifts..

On my last day at Project Why, we had a lunch party at the Women Centre. Lots of going away presents were opened, and I had small gifts for Meher and Utpal (her friend who is currently staying at the Women's Centre while he is on vacation from boarding school). Here are some images from the day: