Near Puri, in the northeastern state of Orissa, there is a colony of lepers founded by Father Mariano Zelazek SVD from Poland and Sister Amelia Sbrissa of the Italian congregation Sisters of Charity. More than 500 families inhabit the colony. The children of these families are healthy and visited regularly by the doctor of the community. They attend the Beatrix School and receive an education that will allow them to obtain a job and start a family.
The school provides for studies until the 8th grade for more than 570 children. The brightest are given the possibility to continue their studies up to the senior classes. Near the school there is also a new orphanage for children who have lost their parents.
An annual contribution of $120 allows one child to study for one year, giving him/her the necessary school equipment, along with daily food and clothing. In order to help these children Swamiji created the DISTANT ADOPTION project.
Every year you will be sent a photo of the child you adopted with information about his/her family and their education. Every year at Christmas, the children write in English to their sponsors, and send a new photo to show how they have grown.