It amazes me that I am back to do a blog post in such quick succession! #proudmoment ! So I recently went on a 10 day trip to Europe and I did it with a just a carry on and like all bloggers do, I had to be extra and blog about it! So here we are!
About the My Name Is Kumar Foundation
When Renee Schreurs and Tim Loonen came to Chennai in 2012 little did they know their life was going to turn upside down. Being associated with the CARE foundation, Netherlands born couple Renee and Time came for a six months visit to Ozhalur which is a small village near Chennai. When it was time to leave they realised they had created such lasting bonds with the children there that they knew they had to do something in order to provide better quality of living and education for these kids, (their kids almost!), and that is how the MyNameIsKumar Foundation was set up.
This voluntary, social organisation, supports the CARE foundation in providing all the resources required to lead a complete nutritious and a well educated and balanced life for 37 children who if not for this foundation would have to resort to begging to fend for themselves coming from the abject poverty they live in and cannot even think about education.
Story behind the Funny Name
One day Renee and Tim were taking around a few kids who were old enough to join schools to all the local schools so that it could be decided which school they wanted to join and this one kid called Sathish had a lisp and was finding it difficult to spell his name without stammering. This earned him some amount of teasing by the other kids. So when the Principal of the next school asked for his name he was quick to say “My Name is Kumar” which had everyone rolling in laughter. It was this quick witted moment which gave this foundation its name! Let’s meet some of Kumar’s friends who are now part of the 37 kids. Find more such pictures at www.mynameiskumar.org
For four months every year, this couple are in India looking after the needs of the foundation, meeting people, crowdfunding and spending time with their 37 kids and the in house volunteers who actually take care of these kids
The main source of raising funds by this Organisation is through the http://www.buyriceback.org/ movement. The entire South India uses and reuses its Rice Bags as rice bags at first and they as mattresses and carpets because they retain warmth. This recyclability of rice bags got this couple thinking about the fun ways of reusing them, and just like that the spark to recreate them into useful things like totes, big shoppers, makeup kits and laptop sleeves was born! Proceeds from sale of these articles beyond the basic cost goes fully to support the needs of the My Name is Kumar Foundation.
It was a few months ago that I happened to meet this inspiring couple through a mutual friend (Hi Jaydeep! 😋) and we decided to do a mini photoshoot featuring these bags and laptop sleeves (and Renee and Tim in Indian clothes which they looked adorable in!) which by the way are so colorful that they are such a fashion statement and we had so much fun doing it. Here are the pictures!
For a long time the BuyRiceBack initiative was carried out in several countries through local agents and stockists and now finally they are in Indian ❤️😍 If you are feeling generous and you want to touch and change the lives of 37 beautiful children all you got to do is log onto http://www.buyriceback.org/shop to purchase these colorful and super useful and sturdy bags. Incase you are from India and the website does not accept your purchase, all you got to do is shoot an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and place your order there. (The team is working on setting up a webshop in India, so fret not! :D) You can also choose from their wide range of laptop sleeves, makeup kits and pillow cushions through the same site. Also, for donations, contributions and collaborations please head over to http://www.mynameiskumar.org/donate-now/ and show these kids the love they truely deserve!
Tim and Renee I think you are so inspiring. Keep touching these lives and know that we are always rooting for you! ❤️