Big Friendly load of books heading for India

A big consignment of books is now on the way to St Matthews’ (Jhadol) school, Udaipur, India, thanks to a massive effort on behalf of the i-connect charity.

Janet Halford writes... 

It was a great relief to get through the process that we started back in July. 

Twenty two cartons, holding 1260 books, have been sorted, packed, weighed, and made ready for shipment. 

It took nearly three weeks of negotiations on the part of freight services BIFS to gain approval for import to India, but finally, thanks to Dr Finny Philip and the Agent, all was agreed, and the books were collected from my home.

It was raining, but the van driver was very cheerful as he carried the boxes across the road!  Final arrangements were completed by BIFS once the books arrived in Surrey.

They will now be carried by Air India and are due to arrive in Delhi on Sunday (23rd October). From there, they should be delivered directly to the school in Jhadol. Please pray for the safe arrival of the books, and for getting through customs in India.

I’m so pleased with the quality and quantity, and the diversity of the books you donated. Thank you to everyone who asked at schools and amongst friends, or who sorted through their own children’s books.

We have a good range covering Young readers, Junior and Senior fiction and non- fiction…with a fairly even spread of titles across those categories. There are quite a number of excellent subject textbooks, too. At least half the books are in ‘mint condition’, and the rest in very good state, and will last for years to come. They will make a good start to the library collection at the school, enabling St Matthews', Jhadol to gain registration with the CBSE, and then to admit secondary age pupils.

For freight purposes, I had to calculate (roughly) the original purchase value of the books and it was around £9000! Even at second hand value that would be something in the region of £3500. So, the total freight, tax, insurance, carton and tape cost of £750 is well worth it. I have received some donations (£150) towards this cost already, but more would be very welcome. Please give any donations to me, Mark or Elena Speller. Cheques can be made payable to I-connect.

But - most of all - thank you for the books!  We did this once before when St Matthews’ school, Sanjay Park, Udaipur first opened, and Mark and I had the pleasure of sorting and shelving those books in the school on our subsequent visit to India. We know how delighted the teachers, pupils, and school Principal will be, and what a difference it will make to the education offered in Jhadol.