With only 18 days to fit it all in, we are having a busy time galloping from one amazing experience to the next. 

The trip started with 10 days in Sangam where we met with Girl Guides and Girl Scouts from all over the world – making new friends from Argentina, Madagascar, Ghana, America and of course the UK.

We have whizzed round Pune in tuk tuks, which beats any theme park for white knuckle riding, although after only a few days we became so chilled out that going the wrong way down a four lane carriageway, across oncoming traffic and up pavements no longer merited gasps and clenched buttocks. It’s just India!

The highlight of our time at Sangam has been our community action projects, part of the Discover Your Potential programme.  We went to Tara Mobile Crèche, which is an organisation that provides care and education for the children of the labourers on construction sites, Anand Gram which is a school on a leper colony, BKS which is a centre for children with disabilities and Maher which provides care for women who have various difficulties.  Each group had a brilliant time at their project, even though it was hard work and emotionally challenging throughout. Whilst we knew that we would be encountering poverty, interacting with individuals, especially the children, made it very real.

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We hope that we have made a small difference to the lives of the children and women, as they have certainly made a difference to ours

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Back at Sangam we went mad for chai tea, cooled off in the pool, learnt about Indian culture, tried out yoga and laughing yoga (which was especially mirthful) and our course shopped till we dropped in the local market. We went all giddy in the sari shop, with fabric flying everywhere as we searched for our perfect palette and patterns among the array of colours and sparkles.

It was sad to leave Sangam and our sisters there, but the next adventure was beckoning so we flew off to the bright lights of Delhi.  Here we went all touristy and posed at every snaportunity in front of mosques, temples and random rickshaws. We were also a hit with the locals, as we posed for so many selfies that we now know what it is like to be famous!

The next stop was the elephant sanctuary where we learnt about how the elephants had been rescued from captivity and saw some of the beautiful animals at close quarters. We presented the ‘elephant blanket’ we had made as part of our fundraising, so a piece of 1st Somercotes will stay in India.

Then on to Agra and the selfie fest of the Taj Mahal. Everyone perfected their next profile picture amidst the awe of such a stunning building. We’re off there again tomorrow to watch the sun rise and to renew our promises. This trip has been and still is an amazing experience where we have utilised and reflected upon every part of our promise. It has challenged us and rewarded us. We will certainly never be the same again now that we are carrying India, and especially Sangam, in our hearts and minds.

 

Tuk Tuk Rides in India!
1st Somercote Guides
The Elephant Blanket!
Flaunting our Sari's
Learning some local skills
The Taj Mahal! Getting our profile pictures sorted!
Forever Colourful in India
We're naturals now in a Tuk Tuk
Elephant sanctuary with some incredible creatures.
Cooling off with a dip in the pool!
1st Somercote Guides are in India

 

Discover more about out Inspiring Guide Trips to India