Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Rising Star Outreach


Rising Star Outreach (RSO) focuses on a variety of areas, but, from our observations thus far, everything revolves around the 180 children that are cared for at RSO and attend the Peery Matriculation School.  Most of these children come from leprosy affected parents and have been given the chance to come to RSO and attend this school to break the cycle of poverty and begging that their families and ancestors have had to live with.  

Just as an FYI here are some facts on leprosy:
- Leprosy is an ancient deforming disease caused by a bacteria and exists to this day in many parts of the world.
- It is commonly believed that any exposure to leprosy affected people can cause transmission. This is not true because the overwhelming majority of people are not susceptible to leprosy and will not develop the disease even after extended exposure. Much is being done worldwide to educate the general public on this fallacy.
- A multi-drug treatment, which stops but does not cure leprosy, has been introduced over the past three decades. This development has not eliminated leprosy, but has drastically reduced the effects of the disease.
- For more information on leprosy in India please visit:

In the below picture Anita is with Nary and Agnas Mary, two of the many adorable girls at RSO. These children, boys and girls alike, are the highlight of our day. We cannot resist their beautiful dark brown eyes and their most amazing smiles. There is happiness written all over their faces, even though their lives outside of RSO do not always reflect that. We feel immensely loved by them and enjoy being in their company.


Below is Tal’s mother in front of the children's dorms.


A regular dinner scene. These little boys eat twice as much as we do and you would never be able to tell.


Below is the daily morning assembly, which is held at the school.  The wing on the right is completed and RSO is building another wing on the left.


This is a math class that we were able to attend and observe from the back row…


Linda teaching a class to the 1st graders.  Don’t they look so well behaved? That can be very deceiving and we have increased respect for any teacher that can discipline and teach any group of children.


Tal’s parents taught a class while they were here for a week… The children loved Rick telling them stories about animals and their behaviors. I (Anita) was spellbound as well.


Below Rick performs his hugely popular “take off the thumb” trick…

Dad with RSO kids

A beautiful computer lab…


This is a common view that we often see as we go running in the morning…


There are two families that direct the work at RSO. They live on campus with the kids and teachers.  We have really enjoyed being around both of them and are so inspired by the sense of adventure and just taking off and living in India with their families.

Steele and Sara Fam

Greg and Rachael Fam

In order to keep with Indian custom, Anita gets to wear this cool outfit called a Salwar.  It is mandatory for all women at RSO to wear either a Salwar or a Sari and Anita isn’t complaining because it is comfortable and cool.


This will be our home for the next few months.  We were blown away by how nice our accommodations are.  The volunteer house was completed in December of last year so we are among the first occupants!


It was so nice to walk into a very clean volunteer Hostel, which has to be some of the best accommodations in the volunteer world.


We went to a leprosy colony last week and here are some pictures from what we experienced… 


The streets were paved and every house had been donated by a Christian church.  It is hard to explain the experience so we will just show you some of the pictures…


Dr. Kumar is a wonderful doctor that visits hundreds of Leprosy affected people every week.  Fortunately, he had the help of two nurses for the past week which gave him time to explain each patient’s story.The stories were fascinating and inspiring.  My mom documented some of the stories in her blog.  If you would like to read more about our visit to this colony, please visit: http://eyrealm.blogspot.com/2010/02/incredible-feet-and-faces-of-leprosy.html






In our next blog we will tell you more about what our responsibilities are while here at RSO.


  1. It has been so much fun following your adventures. Thanks for sharing! I would love to do something like this with my 11 year old or at least when he gets a little older. He is a little spoiled as you mentioned in your previous post, and I think an experience like this would really help appreciate the life he has. I am keeping my eyes out and heart open for just the right opportunity.

  2. How fun to see this and know exactly where you are and what you're doing! It's so great to have this documented!