Author Archives: Simon S. McNorton

The end of an Indicorps year

My year in India has finished, and I owe a debt of gratitude to Indicorps staff and Fellows past and present, and of course my adopted family, friends and colleagues at Rajasthan Mahila Kalyan Mandal. This blog contains reflections on … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Indicorps’ year in review

Why Indicorps? Why India? I find passion in service, in work that is rewarded by wider values and in the gratitude of others. I yearn for adventure. I am motivated by challenges. I’m like a thousand other would-be do-gooders. Why … Continue reading

Posted in Experiences, Reflections | Leave a comment

What is an Indicorps Fellow?

In December 2009 I began my Indicorps’ adventure. A friend linked me to the application pages for a development experience unlike anything else out there. I wanted to volunteer abroad. On first impressions, Indicorps’ seemed the perfect opportunity. I go … Continue reading

Posted in Public Column, Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Leaders with dreams

Somewhere, sometime, we stopped dreaming. Sagar, the hostel warden, left his post last week to join a government school in his home district, Dausa. He was a solid hostel warden. He was in control; he knew the children, their parents, … Continue reading

Posted in Public Column, Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What have I done this year?

In A message home I wrote that my year in India has indulged childhood fantasies. I’ve been a jack-of-all trades; I’ve had the chance to try my hand at every job I wanted as a kid, except the astronaut part. … Continue reading

Posted in Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Indian bathroom etiquette

My host-father hands me the empty canister, a plastic bottle with the top hacked off. It’s pretty grim. In Gujarati he explains – I suspect – that I should take the container to the floodwater lake, scoop up some water, … Continue reading

Posted in Experiences | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

India’s problem-solving problem

When a fallen tree obstructs the road, do you stop to move it? Or do you drive around it? Two days ago five child marriages took place in Chachiyawas, on my doorstep. Ten spritely children, blessed with potential, were needlessly … Continue reading

Posted in Experiences, Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Manish Guru

Manish was found by police in a village near the city of Mathura in Uttar Pradesh on June 28. He is with his mother and will return to school in time for the start of the new term. Thanks to … Continue reading

Posted in Experiences | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

One-billion strong for equality

Last night same-sex marriage became legal in the state of New York, making it one of just seven states (including the District of Columbia) to offer gay marriage in the US. A while ago I tried to crunch statistics on … Continue reading

Posted in Current Affairs, Experiences, Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Facing the heat

The desert brings a cruel partisan climate. I remember a freezing weekend spent building our Chula. Back in November I could barely speak Hindi; but those misty mornings with the children – breaking every rule of fire safety – were … Continue reading

Posted in Experiences, Reflections | Tagged , , , , , , , | 10 Comments