Hornchurch girl, 14, spends pocket money to clear boy's school debts in India

Vashika Singh, a pupil at St Edward’s Academy in Romford.

Vashika Singh, a pupil at St Edward’s Academy in Romford. - Credit: Sattesh Singh

A 14-year-old Hornchurch schoolgirl has donated all her savings to clear the school debts of a boy in India. 

Vashika Singh, a Year 9 pupil at St Edward’s Church of England Academy in Romford, paid 43,000 rupees to cover the three years' of outstanding fees of a boy in Hyderabad, whose education had been put in jeopardy by family health problems. 

Abhishek, a Year 10 pupil at Geeta High School in the city in southern India, had been unable to attend classes after his father – the family’s sole breadwinner – fell ill. 

Vashika’s father, Sattesh, heard of Abhishek’s plight while visiting his parents in the country where he was born and raised. 

On his return to Hornchurch, he related the boy’s situation to his daughter.

“I was just helping her to know what the world is going through,” he said. 

But Vashika, said Sattesh, was “taken aback” by the story – “Dad, really? Is that what is happening?” – and insisted all her savings be used to clear the debt, which was approximately equivalent to £430. 

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“Just let the boy study,” Sattesh remembered his daughter saying. 

“I was quite impressed at the age of 14 that she was very keen to do that,” he said. 

Sattesh gives his daughter pocket money for doing chores and during festive periods, and Vashika had been saving up for a 16th birthday trip to Paris. 

But when she heard of Abhishek’s situation, she was insistent that the money be put to a more altruistic use. 

Sattesh said the family were “in tears” when they called the Singhs to say thank you. 

“They just couldn’t believe that someone just came from nowhere and cleared the dues, because that was a very stressful thing for the parents,” he said. 

Vashika also received a letter of thanks from the school in Hyderabad, which recognised the “act of kindness”. 

Sattesh said Abhishek promised he would “study well and take care of his parents and try to do similar good deeds in life”. 

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