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Welcome to Karunai Illam

The Karunai Illam Trust is a New Zealand incorporated charitable trust. It was set up to support the work of Jean Watson, a Wellington writer, who in 1987  established a children’s home in Nilakottai, Tamil Nadu, south India.

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12 May 2018, Fundraising event: Afternoon tea and movie! and more!

Come join us for a fun afternoon! A delicious afternoon tea followed by a special screening of Aunty and the Star people movie directed by Gerard Smyth - the story of Jean Watson and how she changed the lives of poor children in South India. PLUS the afternoon includes live performances from a member of the Mudra Dance Company and the Long Hall Gamelan group! 

For tickets contact: Sharmila 021 268 2011 Baskar 021 192 2930 Jennifer 04-384 5228


DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
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DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!

The nursery/primary school started on the premises of the old hostel building has completed 10 years! Starting with just a few children, the school roll now boasts 331 children and well over a dozen teachers and staff. The school is now a well established model school in Nilakottai and an initiative we at KIT are very proud of. 

The anniversary event in January 2018 was marked by cultural programmes performed by the children; several former teachers felicitated; and the walls carried a pictorial display of the history of the school as well as learning resources developed by the school’s teachers under the leadership of Mr Raghavan. Parents and local community attended the celebrations inaugurated by Dr. Pankajam, Educationist, Gandhigram. Other guests included Mr Vasi, DHAN head. 

Additional images

  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!
  • DHAN Karunai Illam school celebrates 10th year anniversary!

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Illam Fund Raising Dinner!!!


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Our children's home is called DHAN Karunai Illam. The DHAN Foundation is our Partner organisation and the word DHAN stands for Development for Humane Action. Karunai means Grace, and Illam is Home.



Tamil Nadu, India

Nilakottai, Tamil Nadu

(Click to view maps)