India Kilo 5 a Warm Welcome in Averagunda

6th March 2014

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We have had such a warm welcome to Averagunda from not only the village leader "Big Boss" but the whole village. The welcome ceremony included flower garlands, and blessings from the women of the village. We have been very touched by the friendliness of the community as we have visited the houses completing surveys. We have really enjoyed our first week integrating with the community and the kindergarten children. We are sleeping in "Big Boss'" house, who also provides us with delicious food.

During this first phase of our two month stay in Averagunda, we have been swarmed by local press and television crews interested in what we are doing and what we aim to achieve. This has brought attention to local issues, including the government's slow progress in bringing electricity to the village.
Life in the village is very simple, with no electricity or water pumps. To get our water supply we have had to walk to a local well and pull up water. This has made us very aware of our water consumption, with the water rapidly falling over the week. We have had to adapt to using less water for washing ourselves and our clothes, something we all hope we will take home, as we change our habits.

Our aims include cross cultural learning, peer education and the construction of a new community hall for the village. We have already had some successes, including visits to the local primary school to teach about hand-washing, and for a sports day. The children really loved it, and so did we; it was good to see the children using the hand-washing technique we had previously taught.

Keyon, Liam, Emily, Tania, Fiona, Josh, Hanaman, Meenakshi, Shivu and Gowtham

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