Charity Mission for underpriviledged children in Darjeeling tea garden areas
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Underpreviledged children from Pandam Tea Estate, Darjeeling

Grown at an elevation of 750-2000 meters, Darjeeling Tea has created a name for itself and no account is essential or required – just the product name is self explanatory for the Champagne of Teas. Tea connoisseurs world-wide formulate their favorite brew and taste the most exotic Darjeelings, but as every product has its own story to eulogize, Darjeeling Tea also imbeds a story where thousands of hands have worked together to give you ‘the prefect brew.’

If you pause and give a thought of how the tea was processed, you will then realize how harsh and cumbersome it is for the tea laborers to pluck tea while standing on a hilly slope almost vertical to their body. Yes, we are talking about the tea laborers. Some people are misguided about the laborers and their living conditions. Such an incident took place when a visiting tourist from Germany commented during a friendly interaction, “I suppose Darjeeling Tea is a very big industry since we cannot afford to have a single cup back home. It’s very expensive. The tea garden workers here must be one of community’s richest people”. We wish that it was just the case as our friend from Germany conjectured, but on the contrary it is just the opposite. The wages they receive are not sustainable enough to provide their children basic structural education and hence contribute to the overflowing and exhaustive population of illiterates mostly accountable in the tea gardens areas. Thunderbolt Tea aims at helping these poor children by contributing a certain percentage from the sales towards their education. It has laid out several programs where illiterate parents (garden workers) are made conscious about the importance of their child’s education.

Dr. Mahendra P Lama"The problem is the condition of the workers. No one really takes care of them. They are the worst hit lot today. I know it both on personal ground as my grandfather worked in Pankhabari Tea Estate (Makaibari region) and also as a reseacher in the tea industry of Darjeeling. I have raised these issues in many national and international forums including the last Social Summit held in Mumbai. Since a large number of people living in the Darjeeling area live and depend on the tea plantations, this is a real shame. Look they have remained deprived even from the basic development amenities." - Dr. Mahendra P. Lama (extract from "Illumine", a monthly local magazine).

About Dr. Lama
Dr. Mahendra P. Lama is a Professor of South Asian Economics in the School of International Studies in Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He is also Chief Economic Advisor to the Chief Minister of Sikkim with a Cabinet Minister rank. He is presently a Visiting Professor in Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo. He was nominated by the Government of India in the Independent Expert Group set up by the South Asian Association for Regional Co-operation (SAARC) in 1997. He was the prestigious Asia Leadership Fellow in Japan in 2001 and Ford Foundation Fellow in the USA in 1997.

Our quest is to help as many as possible: to spread our wings as far as we can reach, but we know that it will not be adequate for the mass living in a macabre situation. We need hands that come forward to help; to assist; and to make a difference. We extend our benign appeal to anyone interested to help or sponsor a child’s education. Thunderbolt Family WELCOMES ALL!

Come let us light one 'Candle of Hope'; then others will be lit by the same one to dispel the darkness of illiteracy and illuminate the world with radiance of Education

It will unquestionably make a gigantic difference to the child and his family and you can get a tremendous feeling of having done one commendable job. The sponsored child’s info will be put up on our site on relevant “Sponsored Childs” page with sponsor names. The sponsors will be updated on the performance of the child on a regular basis through email and phone. Interested in sponsoring? Click Here!
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