Siddhartha School Project

International Fellowship of Buddhist Youth Ladakh distributes flood relief by tsewangnorbuvivek

IFBYL (INT’L FELLOWSHIP OF BUDDHIST YOUTH LADAKH) today, 22nd August, 2010, visited three of the most affected remote far flung villages of ladakh. We met with all the people who were affected by the flood. We distributed 49 nine set of com…plete beddings (one double sized bed quilt, one mattress, one blanket, one pillow and Rs. 2000 cash to all those people who were badly affected. This is our first phase of the RELIEF WORK. Our next phase of relief work will be to visit the hospital on Tuesday, and talk to all the patients and distribute a small packet of fruits and bread, and also pray for their speedy recovery. Third phase will be to visit more remote villages which are currently cut off as the roads are washed away. The army is fixing the road and once it is ready we will immediately rush to the affected areas with our relief goods and cash.

— Tsering Norbu Vivek, Siddhartha SchoolIFBYL team


Quick Update from Ladakh by scottcronenweth
August 19, 2010, 2:35 pm
Filed under: School News

Lisa Blake, a Siddhartha School Project board member who is in Ladakh, was finally able to get a phone call out this morning (August 19) US time. She is well and staying in Stok. School has reopened and, along with the children, Lisa is busy taking part in the digging-out. Those who know him will not be surprised to hear that Khen Rinpoche has been right in there with a shovel himself. One place where they helped out was the hospital in Leh, where mud fills many rooms to a depth of 4 feet. Lisa said the people are just digging the buildings out, by hand, bit by bit, all over the area.

Lisa described the devastation as “unimaginable and horrific” but said things were improving now that the Manali Road is mostly open and food, fuel, etc. can once again be trucked in. The Indian Army has been hard at work on the roads and bridges. Yet many areas are still cut-off from services. Communications are also slowly improving so we hope to have more news to share soon. From across the valley in Stok, Lisa watched the nighttime storm that caused the flood. She said it was “like a demon eating the mountains” — a supernatural force.

Rinpoche’s nephew Vivek is right on the front lines of aid coordination and distribution. Local groups are cooperating to make sure that all needs are covered. Vivek has received about 200,000 rupees (approximately $6,500) from the US, Switzerland and elsewhere. Thank you, everyone, for your prayers and support. We’ll do our best to keep you informed.

How to Send Humanitarian Aid to Ladakh by scottcronenweth
August 12, 2010, 3:23 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

Hi again, everyone — Joli Greene, President of Siddhartha School Project, has come up with a great way to make it easy to send money to Ladakh — and save the $35 fee per transaction.

Joli will act as the contact person for wiring money. She’ll record and acknowledge each donation and send them to Vivek weekly. To don…ate, send checks made out to “Joli Greene” or “cash.” Please note on your check that it’s for “Ladakh Aid.” Mail to: Joli Greene, 9 Frost Brook Lane, Freeport, ME 04032-6601. E-mail questions to

Every donation counts and no donation is too small. Thank you so much for your support!

These donations are not tax-deductible in the US no matter how you send them, so you’re not losing anything by going through Joli, and you’re saving considerable money and time.

For information from Vivek, including a description of his efforts and funds raised to date, copy this link into your browser:

Floods Devastate Ladakh by tsewangnorbuvivek
August 7, 2010, 10:20 pm
Filed under: School News

On 5th August around 12 mid night the whole Ladakh was rocked by a devastating mudslide due to cloudburst. The most affected areas are lower Leh and Choglamsar areas [just a few miles from the school]. Apart from these two places many other villages were badly affected by the flood. Many… lost their lives and hundreds still missing. The army was put into action for the rescue operation. Both the civilians and the army are actively working to rescue all those stuck under the debris. Many tourists are also volunteering in the rescue operation.

Our school is fine. The school is closed for the summer vacation from the 1st to the 10 of august 2010. All our children are at home and some of them probably lost their relatives but we will have to wait and see… we don’t know anything yet. Hopefully all our children are safe.

So far around 120 died and about 800 missing. The situation is still not under control. People are desperately searching for their lost loved ones with a hope to see them alive. The hospitals are crowded with people either with injuries or …coming to find their relatives or friends and some coming to identity the dead bodies. Many people are homeless. Many lost their family and relatives. We have lost so much its hard to imagine theĀ  loss.

Mrs. Dechen, our Hindi teacher at Siddhartha High School was among the worst affected. She was in her house and didn’t know the situation will be such a night mare. Around mid night Dechen was awakened by a strong thunder and lighting and heavy rain fall. When she woke up she saw muddy water seeping in her kitchen and before she could even think she quickly grabbed her baby and a mountain of mudslide just pushed her away along with her house. In an instant she was separated from her one year old baby.
For about 20 metres both of them were washed away by the mudslide before she ended up in a house debris under a staircase. She thought her baby was dead and just as she came to senses she heard her baby scream in a distance. She just ran and grabbed her baby who was completely covered in mud and ran back to the only shelter. She spend the whole night sitting in of the half damaged house hoping and prayer for her life. By morning the rescue people rescued her and her baby. Both ended up in the hospital for couple of hours. They got a few stitches and now they are recovering. I was happy to see both of smile and grateful for a new life. But she lost everything. She is happy to be reunited with her baby at least.

Second Term Exams by tsewangnorbuvivek
July 26, 2010, 3:23 pm
Filed under: School News

From 11 – 17, July the children had their second term exams, which is an important exams as whatever marks they gets added to their marks in the final or the third term exams.

All the children did well in their exams and are hoping to pass with good marks and percentage. Now Teachers are busy preparing the results which will be declared on Thursday, 22nd July. The school is closed on Monday as the teachers need time to prepare their result sheets.

On 22nd July, all the parents will come to take their children’s results and also take time to talk to the teachers regarding their child’s performances, etc.

Siddhartha School Picnic by tsewangnorbuvivek
July 18, 2010, 9:52 pm
Filed under: School News

On 19th June the school went on a picnic to a small village called Phuktse, along with the new bus — which was quite exciting for the children. We had a wonderful picnic. All the children danced, sang and splashing water to each other, getting completely drenched, and also had a lot of fun exploring the new village.

New School Bus! by tsewangnorbuvivek
July 5, 2010, 3:16 pm
Filed under: School News

This news just came from Vivek at the school:

On 13th June, 2010, Siddhartha School got its new school bus. All the members of Siddhartha School, staff, students and the parents were very happy and grateful to all the sponsors and supporters for their kind generosity. All of us here at Siddhartha school and all our members of the Siddhartha Welfare Society [the local organization that oversees Siddhartha School] express our sincere heartfelt thanks and gratitude to all those who helped fund the school bus. We are indeed very thankful to all our well-wishers, sponsors and supporters.

With the coming of the new bus now the children can come to school on time without having to wait long in the cold weather and without being crowded. All the formalities are done to get the new bus registered. All the process is underway for the bus to get all the insurance done. It will soon be done in a couple of days.

Our total strength of the school today is 272 students, 17 teachers, and 8 non teaching staff. So the strength comes to 297. When 297 members are divided into 4 buses, on an average each bus carries 74 students and staff which still is quite crowded but far better than just three buses.

Siddhartha School's new bus

Siddhartha School's new bus

On 14th Monday, June, 2010, our new driver Mr. Rigzen Pamper joined our family to take care of the new bus. He comes from Stok and is a good member of our school family. He has a lot of experience working as a school bus driver in the past.