The Four Schools Booklet

This latest productionfrom HHI tells the stories of four schools, two in India and two in Zambia which have benefitted tremendously from the support of HHI and the monies provided by it in recent years to help with the building of extensions and the provision of much needed facilities. The progress they have all made and the improvement in the lives of the children who attend them, many of them severely handicapped makes for heart warming reading. 


Round Strathaven 50 2021

After cancellation in 2020 due to Covid 19 the RS50 returned to the roads around Strathaven on 19th September. It had changed a little to meet the challenges of the Pandemic and involved staggered starts and different procedures for signing in to help maintain social distancing. Despite the restrictions there were over 450 entrants for the 50 miles event and 60 families took part over the 15 miles route.

Despite the mixed weather which brought sunshine and heavy rain all the entrants seemed to be having a good day and many voiced their thanks to the organisers and said how delighted they were to be back for the RS50. They were particularly appreciative of the marshals and those who provided the savouries and home baking at the two food stops. The RS50 is indebted to the many individuals and supporters in the community who provide help on the day. 

Once again the RS50 committee has been very generous in its support of Health Help International and has donated £4,500 to the Charity from the monies raised this year. 

Health Help International Supporters Evening

The Charity’s regular Supporters Evenings which were held in Newport several times each year had to be discontinued due to the Covid restrictions. An on-line one using Zoom was planned to take place in September  but had to be abandoned on the night due to technical reasons. A great deal of work had gone into preparing for it and Presentations were to be given by the HHI Trustees and a number of the people helped by the Charity in India and Zambia. These presentations are now able to be viewed by following the link below. If you take the time to do so you will be able to see and hear about all the activities which HHI has been able to continue supporting in India and Zambia despite the difficulties imposed on the people there by the Pandemic. The Presentation can be viewed here


Strathaven Friends of Health Help International

are asking you to save all your unwanted


PAIRS OF SHOES (Tied Together), 


and let us have them

(we’ll collect or you can deliver them to the Metal Container in the Car Park at the rear of Trinity Church Hall off Crawford Street 

The funds we raise using the ‘Ragbag’ charity support organization will be donated to Health Help International’ to help with its work in Zambia and India

Please Help our Effort

To arrange for collection of items 

please telephone 520204, 521059 or 529755

Strathaven Friends of HHI support for the Banyan Tree Tuition Group

The Banyan Tree Tuition Groups continue to provide education and encourage young people in Kerela to reach their academic potential and finally give better career opportunities to their students.

Even through the covid world-wide pandemic both ends, at home and in India have flourished. Here in Strathaven despite the effects of the Covid pandemic we have continued to support these groups and in Kerela where the effects are much greater tuition has been able to continue although to a lesser degree.

HHI helps with the recruitment and pays the salaries of the teachers and at the start of the school year, provides the funds for the students to be given school supplies including notebooks, pencils, pens and other learning aids.

In India many classes have been replaced by peripatetic teachers providing tuition. Here in Stra’ven it has been amazing the various ways in which our  supporters have continued to donate to the Banyan Tree Tuition Groups –  by post, with an envelope through Ian Gow’s letter box, by personal messenger to his house or meeting him in the street, 

In 2020 a total of £2,168 was raised and the total to the end of October in 2021 is £2,694. With the addition of the monies reclaimed from Gift Aid (25% of these totals) we are on target to being able to provide the support for three tuition groups in the coming year thanks to the generosity of many of our Strathaven supporters and to the efforts of Ian Gow. 

 Many thanks to all our local supporters who continue to make donations and help keep the Banyan Tree Tuition Groups operational and  providing educational support to many deprived young folk in south India.

Tom Sutherland – In the Shade of the Banyan Tree

This is the title of Iain Park’s latest book, a biography of Tom Sutherland, following up his earlier books ‘The Centenary History of the Strathaven Scouts’ and his climbing book ‘Eye to the Hills’

Tom, the son of a Presbyterian Minister, was born and spent his early years in the state of Victoria, Australia. After graduating with an Arts degree from Melbourne University he was a lecturer in Humanities at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology.

Even as a schoolboy Tom committed himself to helping others and as student and lecturer in Melbourne he devoted all of his spare time and energies to many good causes and particularly to helping the young and disadvantaged people of all ages. 

In 1975, aged 38, he travelled to India at the invitation of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charities Brothers in Calcutta intending to spend a few months working with them. He has stayed in India ever since. Inspired by the work of the Brothers and Mother Teresa herself he has spent the last 40 years working tirelessly to improve the lives of the poor, the sick and the destitute people in the southern state of Kerala. Having giving up all his own possessions he has lived the life of those he has been serving and denied himself any of the conveniences of modern life, supported in what he has done by family and friends in Australia and by others whom he has inspired in other parts of the world.

One of these was Ron Prosser, the founder of Health Help International.  Ron and HHI have been supporting Tom for the past twenty years, and providing him with regular funds to enable him to carry out his humanitarian work in Kerala.

Iain’s account of Tom’s life of service has been published in the form of a high quality paper-back book of about 165 pages including over 100 colour photographs.

The book costs £15 all of which will go to HHI to provide continuing support for Tom’s work in India through the activities of his Charity the Banyan Tree.

The Special Needs School in Kerala New Bus Fund

One of the main projects supported at present in Kerala by Health help International is the Happy Valley Special Needs School in Nedumangad.  The present school building provides the base for the Banyan Trees operations in Kerala and from here Philip Mathew, successor to Tom Sutherland is spearheading HHI’s activities in southern India.

Philip and his team of ten staff at the school care for upwards of thirty handicapped children and young men and woman suffering from a variety of life limiting physical and medical disabilities.

These young people are brought to the school each morning and returned home later in the day using two people carriers with each of them usually having to make two journeys each time.

One of them is nearing the end of its useful life and is falling apart due to the dreadful state of the roads in Kerala. Without these means of transport these young people would be unable to receive the education and treatment which Philip and his team provide for them. 

SFHHI has already raised or had commitments for a large part of the £16,000 needed to buy the bus but due to the lockdown and present restrictions some of our fund-raising plans have had to be shelved meantime.