From Sweden with love

MUCH-NEEDED: The Swedish nationals with the students. PHOTO: R.M. RAJARATHINAM

MUCH-NEEDED: The Swedish nationals with the students. PHOTO: R.M. RAJARATHINAM  

M. Balaganessin

TIRUCHI: Their cheer was deafening. The excitement of several poor students studying high and higher secondary classes of Maruthankakurichi village near here knew no bounds on Tuesday after a group of students of Orebro and Umea Universities, Sweden, commissioned a refurbished `Night School' in the village. Every day, it lights up between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. as a free tuition centre.

The 34 Swedish students considered their gesture a `Children's Day' gift to the village. Infusion of infrastructure into the `Night School,' functioning under the `Swedish International Field Study Project,' would henceforth mean accommodation of nearly 75 village students. Two volunteers, Azhagu Karpagam and R. Vidya, have been entrusted with the task of clarifying the doubts of students right from standard I to X.

"I am confident of improving my academic performance by joining the free tuitions," says M. Devaraj, a Standard VII student of Bishop Heber Higher Secondary School, Puthur. "It seems a dream come true. The coaching sessions will enhance my academic performance," says R. Dhanasekaran, a Standard IX student of National College Higher Secondary School.

Inaugurating the new facility, Shankari, Vice-Principal of the Cauvery College, where the Swedish students are into an academic schedule under the aegis of an exchange programme, observed that the aim of the project was to fulfil long-term needs of the village students.

Helena, a student of Umea University, eagerly endorsed her view, and was hopeful of sustained community support to the initiative.

Henceforth, more students will be admitted to the school, says the Co-ordinator of the project, A. Santhanam.

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