At the time of writing this blog post, we are about 6 hours away from our departure time from Hyderabad, India. It’s hard to believe we have been here for two weeks already. Although we have really enjoyed our time here, we are looking forward to getting home to our children.
While we were here, I spent most of my time working with the Digital Media students on their practicum assignments. Lynn worked with OM India at the schools and with some of the Dalit women, teaching art classes to children and helping the women with their sewing work. The rest of the team, made up of nursing students and instructors, spent their time in the OM clinic and providing basic health education. The medical team will stay and continue with their work until July 9.
Today we visited an OM school in a slum in Hyderabad. While we were there, I talked with the OM Community Development Officer and asked about the effectiveness of the school. He said the school has been operating for 18 years, and they have seen students go on to graduate from university and now have good paying jobs, something that normally does not happen among Dalit people. However, there are over 35,000 people who live in that slum community, and the school can only educate a relatively small amount of the children, so there is still a great need for more schools and more educators.
The CDO thanked us for the work we are doing. Raising awareness is one of the most important tasks in this effort to provide freedom to Dalit people. This conversation gave me confidence that what we are doing at Prairie is really valuable. By training up Christian media professionals who have a heart for the poor and oppressed, we are providing Christian ministries with people to help raise awareness for their cause.
If you are not doing so already, please start following Prairie on Facebook or Twitter, and watch for videos from our visit to India. If you know anyone who might be interested in the Media Program at Prairie, share our videos with them and encourage them to consider enrolling. We would love to send more and more students to work with organizations all over the world to help give a voice to those who have none.