Abbotsford student raises money for school kids in India

Samyta Rai created kits filled with school supplies and distributed them to more than 1,000 kids

Samyta Rai

Samyta Rai

An Abbotsford teenager has raised more than $3,000 to help educate young children in India.

Samyta Rai, a Grade 12 student at Yale Secondary School, created kits filled with school supplies, such as notebooks, pencils, pens, rulers, erasers, and a geometry set, and distributed them to more than 1,000 students at two schools in India last month.

“Seeing the kids’ eyes brighten after receiving the school supplies, made me know I did make a difference in their lives,” said Rai, who added it was upsetting to hear stories of children being held back from school because their parents couldn’t afford the uniforms or supplies.

One student told her his mother was about to sell all her wedding jewelry in order for him to go to school.

“The principal of the schools were very thankful because they say that in India, everyone donates money to the temples and not to poor schools, which are more in need of receiving money or supplies,” said Rai.

It took Rai two years to raise the money in her community from individuals, private companies including Boston Pizza and service groups such as Rotary.