8 February 2005

After eating a substantial breakfast at the hotel, we set off for Udayan. It took just over an hour to travel through the mayhem of Kolkata, with the anticipation of our arrival building throughout the journey. We were not disappointed when we pulled into the welcoming gates and were greeted warmly by some of the older girls with garlands of flowers.

Sinead serving lunch

Arrival at Udayan

James Stevens took us on a tour of Udayan and we were immediately struck by its beauty. We were shown the dormitories as well as the library and other rooms that are used by the children for sewing and embroidery. The girls had created some beautiful handkerchiefs that were on sale.


Lunch was served with the children in the main dining hall, after which we had a chance to walk over the nearly completed medical unit. It was particulary interesting to see this building as most of our money has gone towards its construction. One of the fastinating features of it is a bamboo scaffolding that is used by Indian builders. We half expected a panda to appear around the corner!

The children had prepared a short show for us which included some older girls dancing and boys showing their flexiblilty at yoga. Musically, we were entertained by two solo violinists. The final act was a very energetic dance performed by seven enthusiastic little boys!

Girls dancing

We are spending Wednesday and Thursday at Udayan helping to set up the computers that St Joan’s have donated and a train set that has also been given to the children.

James Stevens giving assembly


Thelma & Kathy

@ 5189 days ago

Have just come across the photos on the website - they are wonderful. It all looks very exciting and different. Hope everyone is well and we look forward to hearing all about it when you return.
Will check the website daily from now on.

Marian & Joe Harrison

@ 5189 days ago

It must be amazing to be actually at Udayan now. They seem to have given you a terrific welcome. Thanks so much Dodds for the excellent photos. Love the garland of flowers Sinead. Got everyone at school now following your travels. Millie sends her love Sinead!!

jan ridley

@ 5188 days ago

Pleased to hear that you have arrived safely in Kolkata. I hope the mice weren't too fightened to find you sharing their train. My class will all be logged on to your web site tomorrow in their I.T. lesson. Love as always, Mum and Dad. P.S. Great picture of the photographer!

Anthony Sheridan

@ 5188 days ago

I have really enjoyed the pictures and the commentary on your trip. I hope you are keeping well. Be careful crossing the road!!


@ 5188 days ago

Dear All,
This website is amazing. What a great opportunity to see and share in all the places and adventures you are having. I have told all of the staff to have a look at the website and encouraged them to join the Udayan experience. We are keeping you all in our thoughts and I cannot wait to hear your individual stories.
Love Sinead

Lara Weldon

@ 5188 days ago

Wow. Just discovered the diary and am in awe. What an experience. Very impressed by the photographs - they really give an insight into India, good thing perhaps though that we are saved from the smells! Love the comments - impromptu history lesson this morning. Hope the rest of the trip goes well - will be checking the diary.


@ 5188 days ago

Hey guys! Looks like you're having a brilliant time! Well done Tom for creating this website and spending so much time getting it to work. All those hours have paid off now! Well done! Photos are great, can't wait to see them all when you get back. Keep having fun!

Sophie and Lucy Tighe

@ 5188 days ago

hey guys! well done with the mice, i dont think we could have dealt with them! dodds, take more pics of the guys in action! hope the computers are working ok. be good xxx

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