A group of 150 French Tourists, on a visit to India, decided to move beyond the routine of their itinerary and do something different - renovate a school.
Instead of opting for a regular tour package the group zeroed in on Ramanthra - a tiny hamlet 347 kms from Jaipur in Rajasthan - where the village's Upper Primary School was given a makeover by them.
The school, which is more than 80 kms away from the main road in Karauli District, has just got a fresh coat of paint, is much cleaner than before, the toilets have been repaired, a new verandah and a prayer platform have been built and the compound walls have been raised to prevent the stray animals from entering the premises.
Priyanka, a class six student, says "Our school was run down and dirty but now everything is nice. It is good that the toilets have been repaired, it will help the girls very much."
The school's 80 odd students are happy that they now have a water tank and a safer playing area.
The group also distributed new uniforms and school bags. They spent a day with the children teaching them how to make wrist bands. Claire, who is a part of the touring group, said, "We are happy to come here and see the smiles on the faces of these children."
All this was done after the group raised more than Rs 5 lakh with the help of local managers of Ramathra Fort, a heritage hotel located in the village.
It was Veronique, their tour guide, who first suggested the idea of revamping the school. She says, "When I was here earlier, it was raining and the children were having their meal under open skies. The floor was in bad condition and I went back very upset. So when I got a chance to guide this group I thought I can bring them here and make a difference."