Cutting The Ribbon, from the right, Tiruporuur Union ChairwomanVijayLakshmi Krishnan, C. John Degler, President of South Asian Village Empowerment Intl and Uscha Nagarajan, Tiruporuur Union Vice Chairman


On February 13, 2011, we officially inaugurated the Mundiritoppu Village Community Center, located in Amuur Panchayat, Tiruporuur Block, Kanchjeepuram District Tamilnadu India.


The Completed Mundiritoppu Community Center


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Present were the Tirupuur Block Union Panchayat President Ms. VijayLakshmi Krishnan, Mr. Kuppan, Amuur Panchayat President, Uscha Nagaranjan Union Vice Chairwoman of Tiurporuur Block, Steve Mills Of Prime Trust, C. John Degler, President of SAVE-INTL, S,V. Saravanan, Managing Director of TVO and other dignitaries, foreign guests, local officials and leaders and many Mundiritoppu Villagers.

Assembled Gov’t Officials, Foreign Guests, Villagers and friends

The Mundiritoppu Community Center was constructed by Tamilnadu Village Outreach, an Indian Registered Charitable Trust, in close partnership and consultation with South Asian Village Empowerment Intl, a US 501(c)(3)p non-profit Corporation.

S.V. Saravanan, Managing Director of Tamilnadu Village Outreach and C. John Degler, President of South Asian Village Empowerment Intl.

Funding for the Mundiritoppu Community Center came primarily from funds donated to South Asian Village Empowerment by the  Linda Rudolph Estate and Family. Linda was a founding Director of SAVE-INTL who passed away in 2010. Thank you for your support and kind generosity!

The Community Center is 25ft (7.5M) by 15ft(4.5M) and is constructed with a pillar(6) and plinth foundation of iron-rod reinforced concrete, poured flat iron-rod reinforced concrete roof and staircase. Two fans and four CFL bulbs provide interior illumination and both the roof and interiors have tiled floors. Total approximate cost was $6,000. Please consider sponsoring a similar Community Center in one of the other needy poor socially disadvantaged villages we serve.

A free tuition school, women’s vocational training, and a village library program are some of the uses for the Center that SAVE-INTL will sponsor, but the Center will always remain the property of Mundiritoppu Village – it is not owned in any sense of that word  by SAVE-INTL, although we will maintain and repair the Center and  support the educational programs indefinitely.

Children of Mundiritoppu Attending the free after-school study center sponsored by South Asian Village Empowerment. Teacher Tamarai Selvi in the upper left, partially hidden.

At the inauguration we also donated two branded volleyballs and a tournament-quality volleyball net to the “Youth Group”, whose volleyball court is next to the community center, with the promise of future support should the volleyballs or net be damaged or become unusable.

C. John Degler Presenting a volleyball net to the Mundiritoppu Youth Volleyball Team
C. John Degler Presenting a volleyball net to the Mundiritoppu Youth Volleyball Team

An important and notable adjunct to the Community Center is the drinking water well located within its foundations with a water storage cistern adjacent to the structure.We have Pacific Rim Voices and especially its Director, Peter Coughlan, to thank for the financial support to repair and remodel the existing but previously non-functioning drinking water well. The water from this well is used daily by the people of Mundiritoppu for whom it is an important resource. The story of this well and how it came to be will be discussed in a future report.

PacificRim sponsored drinking water well and tank for Mundiritoppu

For additional photos of the inauguration please go here.


  1. Hi John,

    So nice to finally see some photos up! I definitely enjoyed myself that day and I must say that these kind of projects inspire me a lot. It shows that small ideas can result in big (successful) projects. I will soon try to send you some photos I made during that day.

    Keep up the good work 🙂


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