From our Board of Directors

After fourteen years of dedicated and fruitful service as the Executive Director of DFN Canada, Sherry Bailey has announced that the time has come for her to step down. The Board of Directors wishes to sincerely thank Sherry for her incredible contribution over the years.

Her passion for the women and children of India has increased the Canadian public’s awareness of the power of providing quality education to India’s marginalized children, and her strong leadership has created a stable DFN donor base. While Sherry will be passing on the baton by May 2020, she has created a talented team who will continue her work.

During Sherry’s time with DFN, 20 schools have been built; thousands of women and children empowered with education and vocational training; and Jesus’ love demonstrated to countless low-caste families.

“Sherry was indeed God’s person to help launch and build DFN in Canada. We are grateful for the great job she has done all these years. Her burden for the children and their education is evident to everyone. We pray for God’s richest blessings in the next season of her life”—Joseph D’Souza, International President, DFN.

With Sherry transitioning out of her role by May 2020, the Board has established a committee to lead the search for the next person to lead DFN Canada into this new season. As we enter this time of transition, your continued support and prayer are greatly appreciated.

Please join us in thanking Sherry for her amazing dedication and tireless work to build DFN Canada. We wish her well in her next endeavours, as she is guided by God’s love for her.

Elaine Maxwell

Chair, Board of Directors, Dalit Freedom Network Canada

A Future Full of Possibility

How Netra Persevered to Find Her Potential

Life often challenges us with unexpected obstacles. Like so many of us, this was the case for Netra and her family. Life started out well. Netra’s family wasn’t affluent, but her father had a steady job that allowed them to meet their daily needs.

But when she was 4, tragedy struck.

Netra’s father unexpectedly died, and the family’s humble but content existence quickly became frightening and difficult. 

Netra’s mother struggled to find work while caring for two young children on her own. When she finally found a job, she was elated. But unfortunately, this created another challenge. Now, she had to work late into the evenings, and was away from her children more often than not.

Netra missed her mother. Some days, the only time they had together was a few precious minutes before bedtime. As time went on, her mother became more and more exhausted under the weight of all of her responsibilities. Eventually, Netra’s grandmother moved in to help care for her and her sister.

With what little money she had, Netra’s mother enrolled her in a local Good Shepherd School. When Netra started school, she was behind many of the other children in her grade. She couldn’t read or write, let alone grasp the concepts of her lessons. School was difficult for Netra, and she struggled to take an interest in her studies.

Thankfully, Netra’s teacher recognized her God-given potential and spent extra time encouraging her and mentoring her outside of class. Thanks to this care and dedication, today Netra is well on her way to accomplishing her goal of working in the civil service so that she can care for her mother and grandmother in the future.

“Life is bursting with hope and opportunity once again!”

Her final exams are scheduled for 2020 and Netra couldn’t be more excited for the bright future she has ahead of her. Life is bursting with hope and opportunity once again, and it’s all possible because of the faithful support of donors like you!

A Grandfather Going The Distance

How far would you travel to make sure your child received the best education available to them? 

In rural India, the closest school can be many kilometres away. Countless families like Shiv’s can barely feed their families, let alone cover the cost of transportation for their child to attend the nearest school.

Luckily, Shiv’s loving grandfather recognized the importance of education and volunteered to take him to school. Each morning, Shiv hops on the back of the family bicycle, and his grandfather peddles 8 kilometres to make sure he arrives on time for class. They have made this trek every day for the last 7 years, travelling countless kilometres, whether it’s pouring rain or swelteringly hot. 

While Shiv is studying, his grandfather patiently waits outside for school to finish. His supportive presence reminds Shiv that every school day is an investment in his future and motivates him to work hard in school and finish all of his homework each week. 

The staff at the Good Shepherd School plans to honour this incredible man with a special acknowledgment to show him just how much they appreciate his efforts.  

His grandfather’s supportive presence reminds Shiv that every school day is an investment in his future.

And today, we also want to recognize your efforts as well! Thanks to you, Shiv goes to a school that encourages him to envision a brighter future. Thank you for everything you do—your support allows children like Shiv to turn their dreams into reality. 

Helping the Marginalized Move Beyond Adversity

My name is Mohan Vijay, and helping the children of India through the work of Dalit Freedom Network has been a great delight for me and my wife, Hari.   

My journey began in 1958 when I was a college student in India. I remember watching young children running to inspect an empty milk bottle on my doorstep, in case it might contain a few drops of milk. The sight was heartbreaking. They were fighting just to lick the tiniest residue of cream from the neck of the bottle. Seeing those children so desperate for something so small changed my life forever.

It’s been my personal mission to give back to the community by donating to charities like Dalit Freedom Network that focus on children in need. My vision is to create a world where vulnerable and marginalized individuals are able to grow beyond their adversities to thrive and make something beautiful of their lives.

Give a One-Time Gift

Please give generously to make education and freedom possible for poor and marginalized children in India. Your contribution will open up possibilities through education that could only be dreamed of before.