Roosevelt Islander Jim Luce is Off to India Helping Kids


If you don’t know Jim Luce, you’re missing out on something special. But if you don’t know this low key, soft-spoken, that’s no surprise. His impact on young people, especially orphans, happens without a lot of noise. And now, the receding pandemic has let him get back to work.

by David Stone

The Roosevelt Island Daily News

Jim Luce: Out of the Pandemic, Back on the Road

“Our India trip will be first to Gaya, Bihar to open our Saraswati Centre. It features a free primary school, orphan home ground-breaking, and possible pop-up health clinic,” he writes.

Moving on…

Then, he’s off “to visit the university library we hope to sponsor — In Maoist guerrilla territory.” When he could be home on Roosevelt Island, directing from a distance.

Luce is not known for taking the easy way out. Commitment and hard work saves lives.

In Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh “I meet with the team of H.H. The Dalai Lama who we partner with for…Manjushree Orphanage in Tawang, Arunachsl Pradesh, once part of Old Tibet.

“The Indian Army seized it from China when the Dalai Lama arrived in 1959 when Tibet was annexed by China. Our two-day, 4×4 trip over the Himalayan Mountains on the Tibetan/Chinese border in a military zone closed to the world.”

Helicopter is possible if the weather cooperates, which is seldom… “

“The $800k academic building we helped construct for Manjushree Orphanage stands 9,000 feet up. Hard to acclimate at first…

“For years, we ran two centers just below India in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka after the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami (as we did in Aceh, Indonesia), and plan on meeting with fellow Lions across neighboring Bangladesh beginning in January.”

All this is quietly organized and energized from Roosevelt Island with Jim Luce at the wheel. And now, mostly on foot.

Internet access is, of course, a challenge along this route, but Luce promised to keep us informed when possible. We will update when we can.

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