The school system at India Rural Evangelical Fellowship (IREF) started off as a homeschooling program for a handful of orphans back in the 1980’s. It’s now blossomed into a fully-accredited school system serving about 1,500 kids, and most stay on location throughout the school year.

In India, kids go to school through 10th grade, and then they take an aptitude test to determine the next step. For some, it may mean the end of academic life. For others, it may mean technical training, junior college (11th and 12th grade), or perhaps Auxiliary Nursing Midwifery (ANM) training (think LPN).

For those in junior college, they will test again to determine if they can qualify for college, nursing school or teacher’s training. And IREF now offers post graduate training as well, which allows students to obtain a master’s degree.

Honestly, this place blows me away with the options available to qualifying students. What a blessing it is to those who attend! And Christ is intertwined throughout it all.

The students awake at 5:30am for devotions, and each class is started with prayer. Their day also ends with 30 minutes or so of evening devotions. Knowing that seeds take time to grow, a foundation of faith is ingrained here at IREF. And these kids are being given every tool available to make their lives (and the lives of those around them) better in countless ways.

So I want to introduce you to a few of these kids, showing a day in the life of an IREF student.

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About the Author: Stephen Crane is a year-long fellow with World Next Door. He has a bachelor's degree in theology from Calvin College and a master's degree in journalism from Indiana University. He has a passion for overlooked places and people and would snowboard at all times if it were possible!

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  1. Lisa D said... 


    February 13th, 2012 at 3:03 pm  

    Thank-you Stephen, for the inside look at a day in the lives of students at IREF. What a blessing for each of these young people to have the opportunity for a bright future infused with the knowledge of Christ on a daily basis. You posted wonderful pictures full of vibrant colors of dress as well as beautiful smiles! I will be in prayer for all at IREF and also for you as you continue your trip! God be with you!

  2. Roxi said... 


    February 17th, 2012 at 9:20 pm  

    Stephen, your pictures are truly amazing. You have a gift for capturing the daily life of the students at IREF. The happy faces and colorful images are wonderful to behold. I enjoyed reading about the students and their day to day activities. These children and young adults are truly blessed to have the opportunity to attend the school system of IREF. You are all in my prayers.

  3. Emmy said... 


    February 20th, 2012 at 10:18 pm  

    This is so cool to see the joy on the teenagers face to learn. You captured their expressions perfectly. I only wish that we woild be this excited to learn in school and about Christ in America.

    • madhu said... 


      March 25th, 2012 at 7:17 am  

      hi Emmy, praise the lord how r you? pls reply tome, what is ur email?
      mine is

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