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Dear Surendra and Sanjay,

In return we don't have words to describe our stay with you. We all felt truly welcome and valued in your very special guest house and within your family. We did not expect to get to know you all so well and feel so much part of your community but we did.
The experience in the school touched all of our hearts and we will never forget it.
I know that all of us have returned feeling that we have learnt lots about India but also a great amount about ourselves.
We feel that you are very special people who inspire others and we thank you for that.

We have made a video of our time in India. Please watch and enjoy!

From the leaders, the girls and their parents can I express our heartfelt gratitude once again.
Best wishes always,
Sarah Barlow and team India x
Date of Posting: 15 June 2016
Posted By: Sarah Barlow
Leader Girlguiding North West - UK, UK
Well , Thank you is not quite enough ! It has been an amazing experience to stay at Mandore Guest House and participate in project. Everyone has been so welcoming and helpful.

Thank you so much !!,

Harriot XX

Date of Posting: 14 June 2016
Posted By: Harriot Taylor
North West Girlguiding UK
Thanks you so much for the chance to help the local school !. I felt so welcome at both the village & guest house and will be sad to go !. It is something I will remember & treasure forever.
Thanks you.
Megan x
Date of Posting: 14 June 2016
Posted By: Megan
GirlguidingNorth West -England, England
Thanks so much for giving us the opportunity to work on the project and meet so many wonderful people! I have thoroughly enjoyed myself here, and I am sure every one also has too!
Thanks again,
Holly x
Date of Posting: 14 June 2016
Posted By: Holly
Girlguiding North West England, UK
Thank you so much for making us feel so welcome. I have really enjoyed my stay . The project in the school was amazing and I fell so privileged to have been involved.
Thanks you.
Date of Posting: 14 June 2016
Posted By: Tina
Girlguiding UK, UK

Short summary about first week of volunteering work in Jajival rural school (near Mandore-Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India)

Name: Silke Lohmar (

Date: October 7, 2014

I came to India at the end of September, with the aim of doing volunteering work and to visit this amazing country (which is very far from my world). It was a long journey, but travelling for three days (including lost connection flight) was worth the effort and I am very happy to be here. The reception at the Guesthouse was very cordial and I felt at home after a few days (I have to say that I knew this would happen since the photos of the garden which I saw on the webpage reminds me the guesthouse my parents ran in Southern Chile during more than 15 years).

The first day at Jajival school was very special: The chief of the village came to welcome me, the third eye was drawn on my face and a necklace made of flowers was put around my neck. That was very significant for me.

The teachers (Neelam and Saroj) are very friendly.

My background is not in teaching (I am a geologist and had never taught children), so it has been a challenging experience for me. After being a little nervous at the beginning, I try to make the teaching entertaining for the children (it is easy to notice when they get bored or are not interested). Contents of this first week of teaching have been: ABC, colors, numbers, animals, How are you? What’s your name?, How old are you?, How is the weather? I think the children are enjoying the class. Some of them understand easily, others need a little longer (which is normal), some suffer a little bit (I can tell from their faces and I try to make them laugh), but all are always very motivated, friendly and try to do their best, so I feel very grateful.

Support from Sanjay was crucial to communicate with the children at the beginning (I do not speak Hindi) and is still very important in difficult situations (when we do not understand each other), so a big thank you for them too! My next goal is to improve teaching through playing little games.

Thanks Surendra, I am enjoying already the second week of teaching! 

All the best,


Short summary about second and last week of volunteering work in Jajival rural school (near Mandore-Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India)

Name: Silke Lohmar (

Date: October 26, 2014

The second and last week of volunteering work at Jajival school went by very fast. Since children went off to Diwali holidays, the teaching was over earlier than expected (after 2.5 weeks).

The children and I had a lot of fun during that time and we did more “learning by playing”. This is how I taught them the body parts, the days of the week, little bit about the time (with help of a spectacular wooden watch I found at Mandore Guesthouse) and since they love painting, they learnt the main fruits by filling drawings with colors They also learnt the main verbs (running, cleaning, cooking, dancing, eating etc.) through flashcards and acting. A lot of times we repeated all the learnt expressions and words by little games and acting, so they do not forget them that easily (hopefully!).

The last day was again a very special one. Purka Ba came to say good-bye, my face was painted, I got a flower necklace and an Indian scarf (I looked like an Indian; see attached photo). I was very sad that I had to say good-bye. It was really a great experience for me, I miss the children a lot and am very grateful to the teachers of the school, Surendra and Sanjay and all the people from Mandore Guesthouse who made this possible! Thank you very much and I will miss you!!

Date of Posting: 09 June 2016
Posted By: Silke Lohmar

"My partner and I spent two weeks volunteering at a rural school just outside Jodhpur. We taught English classes and had a wonderful time getting to know the children and helping them improve their conversational English skills. The ethic of this family-run inititiative is about responsible tourism and helping local communities from within. This was evident throughout our time here. We were driven to the school every day in a jeep, accompanied by Sanjay, who showed us some impressive wildlife which included tracking the movement of desert foxes and seeing antelope and peacocks through the eyes of a true wildlife enthusiast. Sanjay also took us to local villages, where we gained an insight into life in rural areas. We really enjoyed staying at Mandore Guest House. Surendra (Sanjay's father) and the family are very welcoming, and the rooms and garden are picturesque and tranquil. We spent Holi at the guesthouse and really enjoyed an authentic Holi experience. We also spent two evenings at the family home, where Sanjay's lovely wife cooked us wonderful food and even let me try on her sari! We found the whole experience rewarding and fun and would recommend it to anyone."
Date of Posting: 09 June 2016
Posted By: Jess Morrish and Liam Proud, London
Volunteers from London.

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