Welcome to the official blog for Raleigh India 12I | July - August 2012

Welcome to the Official Blog for Raleigh India 12J September - December 2012.

Thursday 17 November 2011

The latest from Charlie 1

Hannah and I have just got back from a whirlwind tour of Charlie 1 and, as ever, I’m pleased to report that the group are all doing well.

We arrived in Malligalli just after lunch on Tuesday and found everyone chilling out in the sun after a delicious lunch. The monsoon is certainly over in Malligalli as there wasn’t a cloud in the sky and, looking at everyone’s tans, it seemed to have been that way for a while!
Charlie 1 chilling at camp

After a quick cup of tea, everyone went back to work, while Kim and Lucy gave us a tour of the village and the eco-sanitation units the group had been building. Charlie 1 had been hard at it so they just had three more to complete before they got to the fun part of painting them.

Everyone hard at work!

We then popped into one of the local families home to say hello and have a cup chai, before heading back to camp to find some special surprise decorations put up to celebrate Kim’s third wedding anniversary!

Celebrations for Kim's anniversary 

Next stop was to a house in the village where the group have supper. They’re cooked for by local chef, Ganesh, and we were treated to a special anniversary supper of potato curry, chicken, chapattis and popadoms which was delicious.

We then headed back to camp where Charlie 1 had invited the local band and some villagers for a special party to celebrate Kim’s anniversary! She was in shock when she arrived and saw that pretty much all the village had turned out to help celebrate with us and was delighted when Charlie brought out the chocolate cake that Hannah and I had bought with us for the celebrations. After lots of dancing everyone went home and left us to sit around the fire and enjoy an evening of star gazing. 
Surprise anniversary cake
Fire dancing 

The next morning, Hannah and I cooked porridge for the group and then waved them all off to work. As ever we had to head back to Fieldbase earlier than we would have liked, so spent a few hours with the groups at work before jumping back in the Bravo to head home.

Back at Fieldbase we’ve been busy preparing for change over and can’t quite believe how quickly phase two is going – everyone’s back on Monday! Yikes! We’re planning lots of exciting things to keep everyone entertained and very much looking forward to the premier of the music video!
Make sure you keep your blog comments and post coming as everyone loves getting them and we’ll be handing them out to everyone on Monday.

In the meantime, here are a few replies to some of the messages you’ve sent:

From Lukas – Echo 3
Hi Mama and Papa,
Mir geht es gut. Ich habe eure Nachricht en behommen. Nachste Woche ist Phase 2 schon zu Ende und wir gehen wardern. Das Wetter ist super und wir sehen die besten sonnen aufgange. Ich hoffe es geht euch gut.

From Steph – Charlie 2  
Famalams, how art thou? Thanks for all the messages. They’ve kept me entertained. Tony dude, stop getting sucked into her game. By the sounds of things she’s playing a very good one, (smh). Did you get the carmex? Have you chilled out? And Caz, well done to Broy. He’s growing up so fast. Give him a big kiss from me. Also, tell my Godson to hang on a while longer. I’ll be back soon, so ease up on the spicy food. And to Sab, thanks for the message. I don’t remember 4shire, but I’ll be sure to catch up when I’m back. Loll Kim K? Shocker! Shocker! So predictable.
Look after each other, love and miss you all, Steph xxx

From Lisa Marshall, Charlie 2
Hi Bernie it’s Lisa,
Miss you loads and can’t wait to come home and catch up, only five weeks now. Can’t believe how much Robyn’s doing now, give her a big hug and kiss off me xxx. I’m going to wait till I get your letter and then will write back to you and tell you about everything. Xxxxxxxx

From Lucy Coleman, Charlie 1
To Mom, Dad, Clea, Greta, Marina, Nick, Mary, Stu and Sissy,
I miss you all so much! Everything is going well and time is just flying by. I can’t wait to see you all at Christmas time! Keep reading the blog and sending messages, they make me smile. Love you all so much, can’t wait to hear what’s going on at home. All my love, Lucy
From Anne Schouten, Charlie 1

Message to Melanie Verdam
Lieve mellie, wat leuk am van je te horen! How zijn je tamens gegaran? Over 6 dagen ben ik klaar met de eco-sanitation en ga ik aan m’n laatste project beginnen, het is hirecht super maar mis je wel hoor! Hoop data alles goes gaat! Dikke kus.

Messages to Familie Schouten
Lieve papa, mama en Robin,
Super bedankt voor al het nievlus en lekkers van thuis! Ben nu nog bezig met het eco-sanitation project maar over ongeveer een week ga ik aan de laatste fase beginnen. Hoop dat alles goed gaat thuis. Love you, dike kus Anne

From Charlotte Ali, Charlie 1
Message for Mariah
Hiya sis, thanks for your blog message. Glad you’re getting your kitchen; I’m so excited to see Travis when I get back. Well sis, it’s 8.15am and it’s boiling hot. Just gonna get ready for work after a session of yoga. We’ve got three more toilets to plaster and then that’s all ten done – then it’s a bit of painting. The Charlie 1 group are great we work hard and play hard. We had a fire last night and did dancing around the fire with the community. It’s an amazing village and community. Anyway sis, I’ll give you a ring when I’m back at Fieldbase – love you loads, your twiny twin twin J

Message for John Nicholson
WATP? How’s it going? Hope you’re well, suppose, you’ve been following the blog – Phase 2’s going well. Charlie 1 is a great group, lots of banta going on. We have three more toilets to plaster then all ten are done, we just have to paint them. Sat with me are these boys from the village who are playing a gambling game – it’s great out here! Anyways, chat soon. Love you loads, Charlie

Message for the family
Mum, Dad, Fran, Al, Jenny and gang, Leanne and gang, Gareth and gang and anyone else reading. All good with me, the second phase is going great. Build all ten eco-sanitation units with Charlie 1. The group is amazing, some good banta going on. I’m off on Demon Trek next – wish me luck! Been doing some yoga – Jenny would love it. I hope everything is good at home and I don’t miss the snow. Hope Buster’s OK and you’re not feeding him too much – well Hilda lol.
Love you all and miss you sooo much, doing it for the Ali family. Got to go an elephant’s just come into camp.
Charlie Ali xxxx

From Kim Sparks, Charlie 1
Happy Anniversary Morgan! Please call Raleigh Fieldbase. Kim xxx

From Lizzy Haywood, Charlie 1
To Mum and Dad,
Thanks for my messages, more please and care packages! Having an awesome time and made lots of new friends. Can’t wait until Christmas, I’m going to stuff my face with all the food and drink I’ve been missing. Looking forward to seeing you at the airport and showing off my tan. Please me warm clothes, I’ll try to call over change-over.
Love Lizzy

To Megan Purdie,  
Thanks for keeping me updated.  I despair for the state of the flat when I return. Excited about Christmas now, I’ve started to sing Christmas songs already and have taken great pleasure in teaching people the lyrics to Fairytale in New York. See you soon, Lizzy.
To Alex Beer
I miss my wife! There is a whole lot of offensive nature here – enjoying it though!
Love, Beefy

From Jenni Codd, Charlie 1
To everyone
Hello everyone! Thanks again for your messages, I am getting them slowly but surely so keep them coming! Glad you’re having a good time Sarah, woop woop! And can’t wait to come to Bournemouth. Mummy Codd; am really involved with the community and learnt a bit more of the language. To everyone else, I’m on community phase in Malligalli. Sleeping in a school and building eco-sanitation units. So much work, but having an awesome time. They have parties at the temple and have been dancing so much dancing to the drums. Temple rave! Love it. Never want this experience to end. Met the most amazing people out here. Love you all xxx

From Kate Holmes, Charlie 1
Hi everyone, thank you for your blog messages, they brightened my day! Dad and Granddad your letters have reached me (finally!) It was great hearing how things are back home. Weather is beautiful; I’m going to have a fab Christmas tan. I am so happy here; don’t want this experience to end. Sending you all my love hugs and smiles.
Kate x

From Lucy Shipp, Charlie 1
To Mum,
Really excited to see your letter arrive last night when the loop brought it round. Glad to hear everything is OK back home and Reuben is still up to his mischievous tricks. Only have 6 days left on Charlie 1, has gone very quickly! Just a bit of plastering to finish, lots of painting which I’m looking forward to. I’ve already painted one with three of the other girls. Been having a great time in the village, playing games and drawing henna on the children (once you start they all want some). Missing you lots now I have more time than on trek, especially spending so much time with the families in Maligalli. Please send love to Emily, hope I hear from her soon! Have sent an ‘earthmail’ and will write another soon. Lots of love x

To Sarah Ward
Made me smile so much when I saw your letter after coming back from trek. I keep the grey London postcard in my journal and the kids make a funny disgusted face when they see it (I’ve been letting them run wild with paints in my journal and on everyone’s faces). Hope Brighton is bringing you great things. Xxx
Ps I’ve forgotten if I’ve written to you already, but will write again soon

To Ekta Patel
India is amazing, having lots of fun hanging around with families in the village and drinking lots of chai. Haven’t had a shower for ages, and some part of me misses lugging a bag around on trek. Strange. Love you  xx

To Grace, Lesley and CQP gang,
Hope you’re keeping the spirit alive with lots of pub visits and Christmas party planning is going well. I’m living in a village where we are cooked for everyday by a man called Ganesh who bears an incredible likeness to Dan. Perhaps we can start a fund to send him to the Christmas party. Hope London isn’t too grey. Love, Lucy

To Alice, Jane and Martin
Seems like forever ago we were partying down in London. Hope all is going well, India is full of amazing colours. Looking forward to talking about ideas and photos when I get back. Missing all your music and singing. xx


  1. Gemma Bennett - Tango 5

    Hey Hun, Can't belive your nearly at the end of phase 2. Hope your still enjoying your self. As I write this its only 4 Weeks to the day that you will be back. How quick has that gone. Everyone here is ok, all been ill apart from mum. Went to see the coca cola xmas lorry at Asda yesterday soooooo exciting. Sinitta and Pat Sharp have gone into the jungle and Freddie has been axed cos they are worried he could die. Church Parade for remembrance was ok. I ended up carrying the union. Everyone still asking about you and checking the blog. Cant wait to see you. Missing you loads. Love all here. Lisa XxXxXxXxXx

  2. To Lizzy Haywood. Charlie 1.

    BEEFY!!!!! Just seen your message, well excitin innit! I'm soooooo excited for christmas and can't wait to have you back. I'm so excited for christmas that I have even purchased bubles christmas album! disgraceful I know.

    I'm loving all of the photos on the blog, you are SO brown, cant wait to compare tans! LOL.

    There is as always no exciting news for you... haven't seen malky in a while, think he might have done a dead?

    Your flat is still in a habitable state, the only mishap that I am aware of so far was my fault (standard) Did a whoops and spilled some wax on peaches bedroom wall so we had to do a paint job, its good as new now though!!

    Right, got to bounce,

    Your loving wife xx

  3. Hallo Lukas Echo 3,
    Habe gerade deine Nachricht gelesen, freut mich dass es dir so gut geht. Heute morgen ist auch deine erste Karte bei uns per Post eingetroffen. Lieben Dank. Ich denke die nächste Phase wird wohl die spannendste und am abwechslungsreichsten. Hoffentlich hast du da eine nette Gruppe. Ich hab mir schon mal Goa angeschaut. sieht Super aus. da möchte ich auf jedenfalls zum Relaxen auch mal hin. auch die Hotels scheinen nicht allzu teuer zu sein. es geht da von von - bis. Hab weiterhin eine schöne Zeit und ganz liebe Grüße und ein dicker Kuss von Mama

  4. For Lucy Shipp
    How fantastic to see you looking so well and happy in Malligalli! Emily is well and very busy every day. Roo and I have started new training which has made 100%difference in one afternoon. It's all in one special word. Anyway do look out for birthday things arriving; hope we don't miss the post/Loop. We've had lots of fog here which makes the landscape very atmospheric and mysterious. I'll write again very soon. Lots of love and thinking of you loads, Mum xxxx

  5. for charlotte ali
    hi charl hows it going, good to see your haveinng a great time out there and i hope your good at the plastering cos i,ve got a few jobs for u when u get back lol. love the pictures india looks really lovely wish it was me out there? just to let u know we,er all booked up for scarbrough :)? Every things all good hear well execpt the weather, lets just say it cold lol? your take care of yourself and have fun :) love u loads johnxxx

  6. Message for Charlotte Ali, Charlie 1, hey sis just seen you blog message and pictures, lovely to hear from you and it sounds as though you are having a really good time, I have sent you a letter so I hope you get it. No sign of any snow here weather is really mild! any way sis everyone is well and buster is fine, speak soon, take care love Leanne, Cris, Ryan, Kiaran and Casey. xxxx

  7. This is a message for Kwok Hei Koo (Charlie one)

    Hi Jake, how you doing? I’ve booked our tickets to Rome from 17/12 to 20/12 :) Do you want to spend a day in Pisa?? I’ve also booked a ticket for you to go home on 21/12 at 18:04. Is that OK??
    I have a lecture at 2 to 4 on 15/12. Can I arrive to the airport at about 18:30? Do I need to bring you a coat r? :0
    Lloyd has replied your email. He said if you don’t amend your form, it will be rejected again. Tell me what you want to reply him. :)
    I've written you many letters r,, I will give them to you when you come back!! Can’t wait to see you!!!:D

    PM CHAN :)

  8. Charlie 1
    To: Lucy Coleman,
    Dearest Lucy, Ed and I were so happy to see the photos of you on the blog. I looks like you are having a great time! The work you are doing is SO important. This will change their way of life and give this community a higher quality of sanitation and health. It sounds like the food is excellent. I hope you are learning how to prepare Indian Cuisine. You will have to prepare some curry when you return home. I know you are looking forward to your expedition. The time really is flying by. Christmas will be here before you know it. We are planning for Thanksgiving here in North Carolina. We will be having all of Ed's family~25 people!! and all of them at the cabin!!! We have several homes for them to stay in while they are here. Ed is really looking forward to this family time. We are both looking forward to Christmas in Rosedale with all of you!!! What a great reunion. Guess what? Our house in Natchez sold!! I am so happy and relieved not to have to worry about it being so far away. I hope the new owners will be very happy there. Please take care of yourself and have lots of fun. We miss you sssssoooooo much!!!
    All my love, MOM

  9. Charlie 1, Lucy Coleman. We're SO glad to get the good report from your service in India. That is an enviable and memorable experience that will impact your life forever. Contine to live it to the fullest, be safe, and we look forward to being with you at Christmas time.
    Love, Ed

  10. Hi Kate (Charlie 1)

    it's so nice to hear that you're happy there and enjoying the experience so much. Our weather seems to be getting colder as yours is getting hotter.
    My glasses broke this morning so I'm sitting in work in my prescription sunglasses. I'm pretending I'm dressed as Bono for children in need. Made £5 already.
    Glad you've received my letter. I doubt another would reach you before you get home. Looking forward to seeing you at the airport and hearing all about your exploits over a curry and a cup of chai. Love you lots. Dad xxx

  11. To Jenni - Charlie 1
    You sound like you are having the most amazing time! I can believe its over half way through already though, less than 4 weeks now. I cant even begin to say how excited I am. Thinking about it every day.
    Finally got your letter yesterday, it made me very happy, think it has been read about 20 times now! Keep up all the good work and I will see you on the 15th. Love you Jacob xxx

  12. for Lavinia: Hi lieve Vien, zitten allemaal te loeren wanneer er eindelijk een bericht van/over jou komt op de site. We zijn wel erg jaloers op je (inc. the hard work) want: hoe leuk zo'n avontuur! en zo'n prachtig land. Party Helene was al weer een week geleden. Geslaagd (details in de mail) en vooral genoten van Helga, die zo stralend was. Had deze week in Brussel Nachtvorst!! Boris en Boops alles goed. dag lieve pop, xx je mam

  13. Keep up the good work all those in Malligalli! Did you know?:

    19 November is World Toilet Day

    2.6 billion people in the world still have no access to proper sanitation

    Diarrhoea kills a child every 20 seconds

    Diarrhoea kills more children every year than Aids, malaria and measles combined

    Sanitation is the most cost-effective of any health intervention

    For every $1 invested in water and sanitation, $8 is returned in increased economic productivity (Source: UN Development Programme)

    You are really making a difference. Well done to Raleigh International and all the volunteers.

  14. Hi Kate (Charlie 1), gosh it seems like ages since there was any news of what you are so busy doing. What hard work you are all doing and it all looks brilliant. You will all be able to turn your hand to any task after this amazing adventure. I have sent you a letter, my love and hopefully you will get it soon. I will write another this weekend and get it sent. It is very autumny here and the evenings are getting darker. It will be great to sit with a glass of wine, having nibbles and listening to all your stories. Love you tonnes and tonnes, Mum xxxxx

  15. lisa Marshall Charlie 2

    Hi Lisa

    Saved all the hovering for you

    looking forward to seeing you

    love Nana and Papa

  16. Claire van doeveren echo 2 ha lieverd, we waren blij met jouw telefoontje. we hebben kaarten en brieven naar je gedtuurd. nu maar hopen dat je die ontvamgt. hier alles goed. we missen je en we zijn trots op jou. liefs xxxx

  17. Quirine Potter van Loon19 November 2011 at 01:52

    For Albertine Potter van Loon Echo 4, Hoi lieverd! Als je dit leest dan is je schildpaddenproject voorbij en ga jij je voorbereiden voor de trekking. Hier is het koud en dikke mist dus de kachels zijn lekker aan het branden. We kunnen niet wachten om je verhalen te horen en foto's te zien. Natuurlijk hopen we ook even te kunnen praten. Pappa heeft je wel zitten stangen, maar in Zwitserland is nog geen enkel laagje sneeuw, maar wel een lading sneeuwkanonnen. Als het lukt met het weer dan gaan pappa en Eric morgen vliegen richting Trier. Kate is vanochtend vertrokken, haar verjaardag was gezellig.
    Lieverd, dikke knuffel en kus! Pappie en mammie

  18. For Lucy Coleman, Charlie 1. Hey Lucy! We were thrilled to see some pictures of your group and to hear about what you have been doing. You look SO happy and I can tell you are having a blast. Things here have been pretty normal--Dad and Aunt Lucy are coming over to our house to watch the UVA v. FSU football game tomorrow night. Next week is Thanksgiving and we are going to be very busy. We are celebrating with Sissy, Dad, Aunt Lucy, and Geoff on Wednesday night; Thursday we are going to Richmond to celebrate with Stuart's family; Friday we head to Charlottesville for a UVA basketball game and to spend the night for the football game on Saturday (UVA v. VT!). The following week, we are going to NY with Stuart's parents to celebrate Tom's birthday---all in all a fun and busy few weeks! I am sure you are getting excited for the next phase of your trip--be sure to keep us updated with messages if you can. We miss and we are so proud of you. xoxo, Mary, Stu, and Petey

  19. Hi Kate (Charlie 1)
    Beautiful day, really crisp and the sun shinning. I am off out now to collect some grasses from the hedgerows, then will visit Nanny later.
    Looking forward to seeing more pictures of you back at field base. Get in the front and give us a wave. Love form Mum

  20. lieve esmee (echo 4)
    Nog even snel een berichtje. Als het goed is komen jullie morgen weer aan op de fieldbase. Je bent nu aan de lange terugreis begonnen.In de trein kan je nu alles even laten bezinken, tijd zat.! Vanaf morgen loop ik dus weer de hele dag met mijn telefoon op zak. Waarschijnlijk kan je pas dinsdag bellen.je weet maar nooit,ik neem toch maar het zekere voor het onzekere.We missen je. Papa zei van de week: "het wordt nu toch echt weer tijd dat we wat van d'r horen.Drie weken radio stilte is toch best lang ".Als we je stem weer even heb gehoord , is het goed. lieverd ,we kijken uit naar de enthousiaste verhalen .Eline belde mij gisteren nog in de hoop dat wij iets van je gehoord hadden .Helaas ik moest haar teleurstellen. Toch even lekker bijgekletst. Het is pittig in Antwerpen. Gisteren zijn alle meiden bij soof geweest om haar verjaardag te vieren. Gek he ? Jij op het strand bij de schildpadden, de meiden met een glas wijn in de kroeg. Wat een tegenstelling. EEn dikke kus Papa mama lieke en babs

  21. To Lizzy Haywood. (charlie 1)

    Malky has been spotted very much alive and well.


  22. to lizzie charlie 1
    thankyou for my birthday card. Had lunch at chewton glen 5 star.Very posh.Your car is in for repair,mot and service on tues.22nd nov.I can see from the photos that you are having a great time.Really proud of you.Will make sure cheese is here when you come home.
    Love and Kisses DAD

  23. Anne - Charlie 1

    Lieve Annie,
    Super leuk om een bericht van je terug te krijgen:) Hier alles goed, tentamens gehad en gala gehad. 1 tentamen op 0,1 niet gehaald... heel zuur, dus die moet ik helaas in december als je terug bent herkansen. De ander krijg ik morgen terug dus zit een beetje in de spanning;) En verder gaan we woensdag al naar NYC :) Heel chill om even naar Mat toe te gaan! Jij gaat gewoon al weer bijna je laatste project in, wauw. Hoop dat alles nog steeds goed gaat en ben heel benieuwd naar al je verhalen. M'n volgende brief is nog niet onderweg helaas, maar weet niet of het nog zin heeft eigenlijk. Was btw vrijdag uit met Roos en Emmie in Hilversum, wat een trieste boel, de doelen sloot echt al om 2 uur en miste je wel heel erg toen We are Your Friends kwam! Heel veel succes nog even met dit project en je laatste project dat je al bijna in gaat! Ik stuur je sowieso snel weer een berichtje en wie weet kunnen we elkaar nog even spreken tussen die 2 projecten door:) Liefs xxx mel

  24. LIZZIE HAYWOOD CHARLIE 121 November 2011 at 03:38


  25. For LUCY SHIPP!
    Hello Lucy,
    I sent you a squeeemail but not sure if you have had a chance to see it. Looks like you're having an amazing/busy time! Looking forward to hearing all the stories when you are back.
    Janie, Martin and I have come up with a new dance to R Kelly's 'Snake' song so you will have to visit us when you're back to have a look/join in. Miss talking to you so please hurry back! Keep on having a lovely time and speak soon! lots and lots and lots of love Alice xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  26. For Lucy Shipp,

    DEAR LUCY SHIPP. How nice to hear from you in India!! I'm glad you're ok and are having a nice time. Did I ever tell you about when I went to India? I ate too many spices and it made my tummy funny. Turns out I'm allergic to cumin. I miss you and your cuddles, SO MUCH. So, London is fine, Dublin is hectic, Zurich is stressful and Sydney was HOT. I have so much to tell you about my travels, but so little time. I must go now - an important meeting with a certain D.Cameron awaits. Lots of British and Camdonian love, MARTIN xxxxxxx

  27. Matt Bell in Echo

    Hi Matt, there's plenty of money in your Flex account. I think you should go for it and enjoy your last week, but stay safe, and don't try and fit too much in. Please confirm you want to come back on the 22nd, and I'll sort the flights, or did you want to do it?? It'll be great having you home for Christmas.
    Are you building more biogas units? Can't wait to hear all your stories about the people you've met and all the things you've seen. We're all well here - its getting colder and dark by about 4 in the afternoon now. Katie's filming a horror film tomorrow and had just made the most scary masks! She has an interview at Bournemouth on the 20th, so we'll have to go down on the 19th. Didn't want you to come back on a day I'm away. I want to be there at the airport to collect my hug!
    Missing you loads, mum x

  28. Megan Charlie 1

    Hi Meg Well you are half way through your great time in india WE hope you are well.ENjoy the rest of your time there thinking of you Love Ann Paulxxxxxx

  29. To,Megan Charlie 1 Hi Megan WEll you are half way through your great time in india We hope you are well and enjoying yourself Thinking of you Love Ann Paulxxxxx