BodhiMount Zendo supports the social projects of 'Little Flower', a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to helping the women and children of indigenous, landless and Dalit peoples of South India. Its activities include providing free schooling for the children of landless people, running vocational training for women, as well as setting up micro-credit programmes, health care services and responding to calls for emergency help.

BodhiMount Zendo takes a particular interest in the Little Flower Montessori Crèche. This project runs under the auspices of the Little Flower Public Charitable Trust, established in 2007 by Fr. AMA
Samy SJ. As director of Bodhi Zendo, he is responsible for all social projects of the Trust.

AMA Samy's vision was to introduce a new educational project in Perumalmalai focusing on pre-schoolers. There is a great need for the care and education of the underprivileged children of this region. Little Flower Montessori is a centre of education for the children of the poorest of the poor. It is equipped with qualified teachers and has all the infrastructure needed to ensure a healthy environment for children to grow and develop.

Located in Perumalmalai on two and a half acres, the pre-school serves children by providing an environment carefully prepared for their well-being. Facilities include: five Montessori-style classrooms; specially designed Montessori material and learning tools; a meditation area; spacious outer area for games and outdoor activities.

The Montessori classrooms focus on individualised learning, respect for others, and self-initiated learning. Teachers and assistants monitor the daily progress of each and every child.

Multi-age groupings enhance the Montessori dynamic by reducing competition, maximising curriculum options available to the individual, and providing a real-world atmosphere that plays a role in later socialisation. Parents are kept up to date on the progress of their children during regularly scheduled conferences. To enhance their child's school experience, parents are taught how to utilize Montessori methods at home. Parents are encouraged to observe their children in class, attend parent workshops and volunteer in meaningful ways.

All donations to this project are gratefully received. However, Little Flower Montessori has a sponsorship arrangement for anyone who feels moved to make a more personal commitment. This enables the donor to follow a child's progress, as well as that of the whole pre-school. The cost of supporting one child for a year is Rs.18000. This equates to Rs.50 per day. The sponsor receives information on the sponsored child, his or her family and background, and a photograph. Sponsors receive regular updates on the child's progress and are welcome to visit the school when in India. A school visit however will not include a private meeting with the sponsored child since it is important that children do not feel in any way unequal. Children who do not have sponsors should never feel inferior.

The Little Flower foundation qualifies as an official charitable foundation and donations are tax deductible in Australia. For help with donating to support Little Flower contact Brendan O'Leary at or ph. 0488 776 362.

For more information on the Little Flower Montessori Pre-school contact
Ms. Chitra at
Mr. James at   

1 comment: