Marion's Magic

Special thanks to Marion Gerlick of Germany, a Mumbaikar for 10 years and a volunteer teacher at Angel Xpress. 

Here’s some amazing inspiration from Marion:

After almost 10 years in Mumbai, having turned into a jobless mum because my kids finished school and left the nest, I Googled through Mumbai's NGOs to see whether I could do something useful . I didn't want to "polish" doorknobs and be part of a fundraising team. I wanted to be hands on. Then one day last year I read about Angel Xpress in the newspaper. Amazed about this project, insecure whether I could be of help there without speaking Hindi, I just went to check it out and couldn't help staying back. The first day, 15 little angels jumped and yelled around me, quite a noisy and wild challenge. But I could feel the eagerness to learn and the gratefulness for the attention of what became my “gang”. I signed to be there only twice a week, but found myself being there as often as I could. Being at Bandstand takes only 90 minutes, but it fills my heart the whole day.

What a rewarding moment when they all come running up to me with a big smile and a loud “hello teachaaaaaaaa". What a lovely experience when they pull out their notebooks and pencil and eagerly ask for homework. Sometimes there is no mood for homework, sometimes the mood is set to play or just fool around or search teachaaaa's bag for chocolate. Not every day ends up with a new learned number or a new word, but every day ends with a big smile and bright eyes for the time dedicated to the few who haven’t had the chance to be born as privileged as us. 

 It is just overwhelming, when suddenly "teachaaaa, rubber" turns into " teachaaaa. I want rubber" into "teachaaaa give me rubber" and then ends up into a clearly " teachaaaa, give me rubber pleasssssssse". This progress does not come overnight. For some of these angels it might not come at all, because they need more attention and we are too few volunteers. Nevertheless they come, they try, they smile and they hug you with a “thank you, teachaaaaa". If some of them experience their own success and can suddenly add numbers or can finally understand that 16 is not the same as 61 and then prefer doing maths over the generally more tempting colouring of trains and houses or Ganeshas, then I know that each spent moment at Angel Xpress is so much more fulfilling than I ever thought it could be.

To read more of our beautiful testimonials from our volunteers and supporters, please visit