The Indo Tibetan Buddhist Cultural Institute (ITBCI) is a school in Kalimpong, near Darjeeling, for around 190 children of Tibetan & Nepali refugees and migrants. They learn traditional language, music and dance alongside a modern school curriculum.
There are now estimated to be 100,000 Tibetans who have made the long arduous trek over the Himalayas into India, to live in exile. Those fleeing the oppression and terror of the Chinese authorities hope and dream of a better life for themselves and their children. For many Tibetans in exile the ITBCI is the realization of this better life. The school offers young people (including some residential students) the chance of a quality education, and minimal fees mean that even the poorest families can benefit. In the classroom, students learn maths, English, science, geography, history, and IT. In addition to this, the school curriculum has a strong emphasis on Tibetan culture and language. Students regularly learn and perform traditional dances, plays and songs.