Thursday, October 11, 2012

Happy International Day of the Girl!

Today, Thursday, October 11th, has been designated as the "International Day of the Girl" by the United Nations. The campaign to establish the day through the United Nations was led in the United States by School Girls Unite, an organization of students and women leaders. Cities all across the country are participating in a Day of the Girl Proclamation Project in honor of the day and to spread awareness about human rights issues such as gender equality and access to universal basic education. 

Meher's story and ongoing journey is a triumph to celebrate on International Day of the Girl- she is now granted access to education that would most likely have been unavailable to her before, and as she gets older and continues to excel in school, her leadership capabilities are becoming more and more apparent. She is an example of how one opportunity can transform a life. Unfortunately, there are still so many children- both boys and girls- who never receive their opportunity.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

School Visit

Anou recently visited everyone at school. They had a lovely time together and all of the children are happy, healthy, and doing extremely well. Meher is as lively as ever and continues to excel academically and socially.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Adult Volunteer Delivers Donation to New Delhi

Sudha, an adult volunteer, will be travelling to India later this month. She graciously offered to personally deliver a donation to Project Why that will go towards a technology center at the Women's Center, allowing the women and children there to take computer classes and develop marketable skills. This donation was made possible by Sudha and fund-raising through Chess Without Borders. Thank you to everyone who supported this cause, but especially Sudha for her generosity and willingness to help.
Photograph of Sudha volunteering at a recent chess tournament.

Sujit Travels to New Delhi

Last month, Sujit, a long time volunteer and supporter of Chess Without Borders and the Meher fund, traveled to India with his mother (who is also a longtime volunteer and supporter of ours). After over four years of volunteering and fund-raising for her cause, Sujit was able to meet Meher in New Delhi at the Women's Centre of Project Why! They were both delighted to meet each other and Meher gave Sujit a tour of the center, showing off the excellent English she has learned at school. Sujit also made a donation to Project Why (as shown in the photograph above). Thank you Sujit for all of your support and hard work! None of this would have ever been possible without the generous spirit of volunteers and supporters like you.

Special Thanks to Ethan

Ethan, a 2nd grader from Barrington, IL, was so moved by Meher's story that he chose to donate his own money towards her education fund. He has been involved with Chess Without Borders and felt inspired to take action. We are very grateful to him for his generosity and support.
Photo of Ethan explaining his desire to donate at a recent chess tournament.

Friday, March 30, 2012

4th Annual Hough Street School Chess Tournament Fundraiser is a Success

On Saturday, February 25th, Hough Street School Chess Club held its 4th annual chess tournament fund-raiser to raise money for Meher's education. The tournament was a huge success, with over ninety competitors, as well as lots of volunteers and supporters all helping to raise over five thousand dollars. I was able to be in town for the tournament and witness all the support and effort and it was very exciting. Special thanks to Maggie Gruber, Hough Street School, Zein Bertacchi (who made and served her delicious falafel and hummus!), CEO Dominic Oetinger, and our countless other volunteers.

Also, thanks to Joe Ridgway, who took photographs of the tournament, which you can view here.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Happy Birthday Meher!

Today is Meher's 7th birthday. She was 3 years old when I met her, and we started arrangements for her first surgery on her 4th birthday. I always specially remember her birthday since it is on Valentine's Day, which fits her as she is especially lovable.

While Meher is doing amazingly well and continues to excel in school, she is unfortunately spending today in her family's village as her father is seriously ill, as described in more detail on Anou's blog:
Project Why: Say a little prayer for her

It is an extremely difficult time for her and her family.

In other more positive news, the Hough Street Chess Club in Barrington, IL is teaming up with Chess Without Borders to organize the 4th Annual Hough Street School Chess Tournament on Feburary 25th to raise money for Meher.