On 08 September 2019, CRS was greatly honoured by a visit from the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, who was in Kolkata during a tour of India.
After giving a message during the Sunday service at St Paul’s Cathedral, the Archbishop and his wife, Caroline, toured the cathedral grounds where the educational and social service activities of the diocese were on show.
It was a great privilege for the CRS Director, Rig David, to be personally introduced to the Archbishop and his wife.
It was a wonderful opportunity to explain the work of CRS and Nari Dana. He presented them with stoles embroidered by women from Nari Dana.
He was very impressed by the Nari Dana project and has generously made space in Bishop’s House for a sales outlet for Nari Dana.
A small area has been fitted out with shelves where products can be displayed. With many national and international visitors and dignitaries passing through Bishop’s House this is a great way to showcase the skills of the women of Nari Dana.
The annual celebration of Teachers’ Day was held this year at the offices of Larsen & Toubro, the company that supports CRS through its Corporate Social Responsibility programme.
Some of the pupils from the school at Hastings presented teachers with gifts, then there was a lamp-lighting ceremony and speeches, dancing by some of the children, and a play performed by one of the teachers.
We are sorry to announce that, due to unforeseen circumstances, the Canadian Friends of CRS recently dissolved as a group dedicated to supporting CRS.
We are very grateful for a decade of support by Sheila Johnston from Vancouver. After visiting Kolkata in 2010, she was inspired CRS’s work in education, the empowerment of women, and social justice issues.
She established the Canadian Friends of CRS to spread awareness about the needs of poor and marginalised people in India, and to raise funds for CRS.
The Canadian Friends channeled donations large and small from people across the country. The annual Penny Pot Tea, where supporters counted the small change they had collected through the year, was always a highlight.
Over the years they sent many thousands of Canadian dollars to CRS where 100 per cent of it was spent directly on projects.
The Canadian Friends also facilitated visits of the CRS Director and the Bishop from Kolkata to speak to local supporters; likewise individuals from Canada were privileged to visit CRS projects and see the impact of fundraising for themselves.
CRS would like to express thanks and gratitude to Sheila for her dedicated leadership; the other Directors – Sara, Keith, Roma and David – for their commitment over many years; and people across Canada who have given so generously.
Children at CRS schools celebrated Independence Day on 15 August. Buildings were decorated with the Indian tri-colours and each child had a small flag to hold. They sang the national anthem “Jana Mana Gana” and other patriotic songs.