Sitting in a corner, he looks at kids rushing to their classes. Providing good education to everyone is a mission for him.
This 67-year-old British national, David Gee, had first time come to India in 2001 with his friend Balvir Singh, a native of Sehm village near Nakodar.
Almost 14 years later, David has become indispensable for villagers in Nakodar. The students have become his life.
David, who is a retired chief superintendant of police, has helped seven government schools at Seham, Kang Sabu, Awanchaharmi, Chauhr, Bajua Khurd, Singh Pur Donar and Sianiwal (all of Nakodar block) villages by building boundary walls, rooms, new building for primary school, a library.
David visits Nakodar every year and whenever he comes, the environment becomes festive.
“When I came to India in 2001, I noticed that schools lack even basic amenities and poverty is rampant in the village. I felt very bad to see the situation of schools as the school in Sehm did not had even boundary wall at that time. As I always have a special corner for children, I decided to do something for them as I believe education can eradicate poverty. I want to create a study culture here,” said David.
David then met Ravinder Singh Kang, who was then a teacher at the Seham government school. Now, Kang is a principal in primary school of Chauhr. David gave him donation to build the boundary wall of the Seham school. The wall was constructed and then it became a regular task for David to visit Nakodar every year.
He has also connected Nakodar schools with the schools in UK. He brings teachers from Britain every year and make them interact with students here.
To help the primary school of Singh Pur Dona, which was declared unsafe a few years ago, David got a new building built at the back side of the old building in 2012. The teachers of the school said that they had written to the education department number of times underlining the state of unsafe building, but no one listened to us.
“Ultimately, we approached David and he immediately helped us. Now, we are contented and the students are safe,” said a school teacher.
David has also built a special library for the Kang Sahbu primary school and he brings books from UK here.
On the difference in education system, he said, “There are lots of differences between education system of India and England. I have seen here that the poor children are deprived of their right to education as many of them do not go to schools.”
He said that he has seen some improvement today but still students do not have the uniforms and basic amenities here. In Britain, the government provides every help to students, he says.
Ravipal, 20, who specially visited Sehm School to meet his David Sir, had left his study when he was just 8. because his parents could not afford his education. Since then, David is helping him and now he is doing graduation.
“It gives me a sense of satisfaction when I see students doing well in their lives,” says David.
David says Nakodar villages are home for him. “I like eating Punjabi food, especially aloo parantha,” says David with glee in his eyes.