News of the Branch


Russian Volunteers in the Himalayan Roerich Estate


Russian volunteers actively help the staff of the International Roerich Memorial Trust (IRMT) in maintaining the territory of the Roerich Estate in Naggar. For instance, on June 24 and 25, 2016 two groups of Russian tourists helped to clean the IRMT territory of the International Roerich Memorial Trust, Naggar. One group headed by Mrs. Vera Blinova worked near the Roerich Memorial House. On completion of their work the Russian Curator of the IRMT and the employee of the International Centre of the Roerichs, Moscow, Mrs. Larisa V. Surgina sincerely thanked the volunteers and in the course of informal conversation told them about the history of the Roerich Estate, the life and work of the Roerichs in Naggar, various cultural and educational activities of the IRMT, and the plans to open in near future a new exhibition in the Memorial Study of George Roerich. The interaction was very cordial and the guests expressed their wish to visit the Estate and offered their services in future.

The other team of volunteers headed by Mrs. Natalya Chekurova worked near Svetoslav Roerich’s Summer Studio. They removed dry grass, pruned shrubs, broke up the soil and collected garbage. It was a real feast of labour. On behalf of the Indian staff of the Trust the Indian Curator Mr. Ramesh Chander thanked the helpers.

The beautiful tradition of selfless voluntary help to the Estate started already in early 1990s when the Russian Embassy staff with their families headed by the Mr. Alexander M. Kadakin, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Republic of India came to help the then curator of the Roerich Estate Ursula Eichstaedt to clean the estate territory, repair the Roerich Memorial House and the ‘Urusvati’ Institute premises, and maintain the garden. This tradition continued and is very much alive at present, going a long way in strengthening friendship between India and Russia.

Over the past three years alone in close cooperation with the Indian and Russian staff of the IRMT volunteers from Moscow, St. Petersburg, Tula, Vladivostok, Zarechensk, Penza, Kaliningrad, Zheleznogorsk, Orenburg, and many other cities worked in the IRMT. Employees of the International Centre of the Roerichs, Moscow, and its chapters, as well as various Roerich organizations, regularly extend considerable help to the IRMT performing various works. Significantly, guests from other countries including India, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Estonia, Lithuania, Greece, etc. also express desire to work as volunteers, which fact underscores and strengthens the international status of the Roerich memorial Trust. With volunteers’ help the cluttered storages were cleared, electricity was supplied to the Night Guards’ Houses, and the lighting in the ‘Urusvati’ Institute exhibition halls repaired. Activists also assisted in mounting temporary and permanent exhibitions, various repair works, making guest rooms fit for habitation, cleaning the territory and gardening, and screening documentaries on the Roerichs in the IRMT Conference Hall.

Public support is undoubtedly a great help for the IRMT whose territory is vast and human resources limited. On the other hand, performing a service in the Himalayan Estate where Nicholas and Helena Roerich, and their sons George and Svetoslav, lived and worked, is a great joy and honour for the volunteers themselves who thereby get a chance to work in this unique holy place, get attuned to its high spiritual energies and forever leave here the particle of their soul.



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