S'porean does his bit in Nepal

S'porean does his bit in Nepal

The not-for-profit society Children of Mother Earth (CoME) founded by Singaporean Ravi Rai did its bit to help the quake-stricken victims in Nepal.

Along with six of his "children", as Mr Rai likes to call the underprivileged children living in the homes he has set up in India, he spent a week on the outskirts of Kathmandu. The six helped him to build a community centre in a rural village.

"We built a community centre and a children's play area using bamboo and tarpaulin sheets. The children who were sad after the earthquake were excited after seeing all the toys we brought for them.

It changed the mood of the entire village when the children started playing. The adults looked happier watching them. Some of the children had lost their parents. It was a huge disaster," said Mr Rai, 52, while on a short break in Singapore.

CoME was founded by Mr Rai when he was 35. He was working as a civil engineer here when he left his job and moved to India to fulfil his childhood dream of helping underprivileged children.

From one home with seven children in a small village, CoME is currently running five residential homes and educational centres in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh in north India. About 200 children live in these homes.

This is not the first time that Mr Rai has extended his efforts to relief work in earthquake-affected areas.

"In 2002, I was involved in the Gujarat earthquake relief work. I have learnt from my experience that the relief materials do not reach the rural villages. So this time we decided to help in a rural village which is 30km away from Kathmandu," he added.

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