Sophie and Violaine

So et Vio

We have known each other for over 30 years. Our lives have given us the wonderful  and privileged opportunity to visit many different countries around the world and experience countless diverse cultures. On our travels we have seen both the vast wealth the world possesses in cities like London, Paris and New York, and also the deepest poverty in Bogota and Kolkata. Throughout our lives we have remained very close friends, united by an unforgettable journey through India in 2000. Here we found ourselves enchanted by this mysterious and magical country, which combines the best and worst the world and the human race have to offer.

Kolkata, where we first worked as volunteers at the Mother Teresa mission, deeply impressed us, more than all the other cities in the world we have visited. Since 2000, we have been returning every year and have been privileged to form strong friendships with many underprivileged families. We therefore decided, with the help and support of The Bridge Foundation, to open The Blue Turtle Centre. We hope and believe that the Centre can help and support some of the poorest families in the world, while encouraging the children to educate themselves out of the darkness of poverty and into the bright light of knowledge that can give them the opportunity to lead a better and more fulfilling life.

Why a blue turtle as our symbol?

We were looking for both a strong and gentle symbol to represent our Centre. According to Indian and Chinese mythology, the world is carried by 4 elephants, which in turn are carried by a single turtle. The turtle therefore provides stability, strength and balance to the world, while moving along at its steady and measured pace.  It is also a symbol of wisdom and longevity, which is what we also wish to achieve, for ourselves, the children and the families we support! Because…….slow and steady wins the race.

And the blue color is the echo of life, of travel and discoveries, and the symbol of wisdom and serenity. But most of all, blue reminds us of the plasticized seats of the rickshaws, the line on Mother Teresa’s sari and the Krishna statues sold on the Kalighat market.