Newsletter October 2007

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Global Roundup

Dr. Rakesh Popli, Nuclear Scientist & one of Ekal's Visionaries, passed away on September 15, 2007

Dr. Rakesh Popli (a USA-returned nuclear scientist) and one of Ekal's Visionaries, passed away on September 15, 2007 at 10.00 PM. He was a patient of blood cancer since last some of years. Dr. Rakesh Popli was a Msc. Phd.(Phil) and Ex. Prof. of Perdu University, USA. Later he joined BIT, Mesra, Ranchi as a professior. He was a very learned person and an educationist. He was nominated on the committee on merit. 

He and his wife Rama Popli (a child education expert) had refined the concept of One Teacher School (OTS) or Ekal Vidyalaya amongst the tribes of Gumla (125 km away from Ranchi (Jharkhand), Chhatisgarh. Dr. Rakesh Popli has rendered the service to Ekal by writing the syllabus book for `One Teacher Schools’ free of cost and he had never received a single penny from the organization.

Ekal Family feels a great distress by the untimely death of Dr. Rakesh Popli and pray to Almighty God that may He trascend his great soul to more higher planes and alleviate the pain of his family members!

His brief Biography:
He was born in 1952 in India. He was a brilliant boy, it proved when he broke the 10 years old record in the marks in the examination of 10th Class. He was honored with the prize by instantaneous Central Education Minister of India. He went to USA for higher education and did Ph D. in Nuclear Physics during 1974-1981 from Perdu University, USA. After returning from USA, he joined IIT Kanpur as an Assistant Professor in Nuclear Physics. After this service, he joined BIT Mesra, Ranchi (Jharkhand) as a professor in Applied Physics Department & Vikas Bharti Bishunpur. He served there during 1984-1988. He had been serving the Tribal people of Jharkhand untiringly for a long time not forgetting the intellectual contribution to Ekal Movement. He himself had designed and developed the syllabus of Ekal Vidyalaya, apart from it he had authored 10 books and would write article in around 10 newspapers of Jharkhand. Today, the richness of Ekal Vidyalaya is the product of Dr. Rakesh Popli's arduous effort and super vision.

Diamond Merchants Meet held in New York on 17th September, 2007

To let the Diamond Merchants of New York know of the Ekal movement, on the 17th Sept 2007, a very successful meeting was held at the Utsav Banquets in Manhattan, New York. Jitu bhai Bhansali, a diamond merchant and Working President of the Mumbai FTS had been planning for the last 4 months to have this presentation. Around 20 diamond merchants attended the meet. The Ekal presentation was done by EVFI President Shri Vijay Maroo. The gathering was also addressed by Ekal Global Chairman Shri Basant Taryal, Dr Sridhar of Ekal – New York, Jitu bhai and others. Around 200 schools donation was collected on that day and the diamond group promised for further help. More important was that we could get inroads in a new community.

EVF USA's Annual General Meeting held in Orlando from 21-23 September 2007

A team of 17 Ekalites from India attended the USA National Meet which included the EVFI President Shri Vijay Maroo. At this Convention Shri Subhash Gupta of Houston took over as the President of the EVF of USA from Shri Chandresh Saraiya. 

Following are the snapshots of the meet:

Group Photo:
 

EVF USA's new office at Houston inaugurated by Nitish Bharadwaj, popular as Lord Krishna of Mahabharat TV Serial

With the grace of God and good wishes from all Ekal National Office has moved to a larger office space. On Saturday, September 8, 2007, the legendary Actor Nitish Bharadwaj, known for portrayal of Krishna in Indian TV serial Mahabharata and Bollywood Film Star, inaugurated EKAL national office. We were fortunate to have Nitish Ji in Houston on very special day “Ekadashi day” to make the opening day even more blessed day. Many EKAL members joined the opening ceremony and had the opportunity to visit with Nitish Ji.

Our new address is:
Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of USA
12503 Exchange Dr.
Suite 518
Sugar Land, TX 77477
Ph. 281-240-0631

Ekal Vidyalaya news in New England, USA Newspaper

Following is an Ekal Vidyalaya article "Educating India's Children", which was printed in a New England news paper. It is the only & most popular Indian newspaper serving the region's Indo - American Community in New England area.

Educating India’s Children
Fundraiser to be held Sept. 22 at Natick High
By DAVID MORAN 

NEWPORT, R.I. — The Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation ascribes to a simple, yet largely inspiring, motto: If the poor boy cannot come to education, education must go to him.

These are the words of Swami Vivekananda, the influential Hindu spiritual leader whose teachings have in many ways informed much of the foundations mandate.

Ekal Vidyalaya is a non-profit organization based in Houston, Texas, that aims to eradicate illiteracy from rural and tribal India by 2011 and bring education to many of the countrys poorest communities by initiating, supporting, and establishing a series of innovative one-teacher schools known as Ekal Vidyalayas throughout the country. To raise money for this effort, the foundation plans to hold a fundraiser at Natick High School, in Natick, Mass., in September.
Despite India’s many social and economic advances over the past 60 years since attaining independence, more than two out of every five of the nation’s citizens are illiterate. And when the statistics focus on tribal and rural sections of India, they get even worse: less than 30 percent of the population of an average Indian village is able to read or write, according to the foundation, which officially registered as a charitable trust in 1999.

The Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation is working to improve these literacy rates. As of June, the organization has established more than 23,100 one-teacher schools in rural sections of India, helping to educate roughly 695,670 of the nation’s children.

But Ekal Vidyalaya’s goals extend beyond literacy, and strive to educate students on such issues as health, adolescent development, and personal hygiene. The foundation also works to establish lasting relationships with members of local communities to ensure that the oneteacher schools become self-reliant and autonomous within seven years.

The Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation aims to bring non-formalized education into village or rural settings in India, where it has never been before, says Ram Nehra, vice president of Ekal Vidyalaya. “When I say non-formalized I literally mean that: Most of the time, in these oneteacher schools, classes are held under a tree. There will be one teacher to about 30 to 40 children ages four to 15, so in a lot of ways its very simple and basic, but, at the same time, it is providing a great service. It’s a classroom without a roof or walls.”

A retired pharmacist who was born in Kenya but educated in India, Nehra, has been volunteering for Ekal Vidyalaya for the last six years.

“This is the purpose of my life,” says Nehra, 73, a resident of Rhode Island. “I feel that I am blessed to be doing this work. I firmly believe that it is the responsibility of every human being to impart education, otherwise the uneducated become a burden on their community, on their country, on the whole world.”

News from home

Bollywood Film Actress and Ekal's Brand Ambassador - Smt. Hema Malini's program - 'Draupadi' at Surat, India

Widely known film actress, classical dancer & Ekal Brand Ambassador - Smt. Hema Malini performed a 2 hours & 30 minutes Ekal Promotional Dance & Drama program titled - 'Draupadi' at Surat, India on 25th August 2007. At the end of the show, Hemajee motivated all of participants to come forward and join the hands of the people of Ekal Movement, who have been working with a great mission - 'To educate and empower the downtrodden and deprived tribal and remote living brethren of India'.

Followings are the news paper cuttings of that program:

Prerna Varga held on 3rd, 4th & 5th Sep. 2007 in Karnataka

A prerana varg was held at Belgaum on 3rd 4th and 5th September 2007 for the fulltimer workers of District (Anchal) and Prant (region)level, who have been with the yojana for the last five,six years. The varg succeeded in fulfilling the need of guidance in respect of personality development of self and creating spiritual awareness to these activists who are always busy in thinking process and moving in their respective areas in connection with the job entrusted to them. Well known Industrialist and President of Ekal Abhiyan(Karnataka) Sri. Suresh Hundreji's 'Business Ashrama' was the venue of this 3 days varg. 

Though the venue was in industrial estate, the unique feature of this industry, its environment of 'Ashram' inspired every participant. This could be sensed very easily by the active involvement of participants.

Narration by Dr.Bhimrao Gasti (MA, Phd), a man born and brought up in a tribal community, branded as 'criminal tribe ' by the police,who has experienced himself the sufferings of a community which is mostly poor and illiterate,who has struggled successfully in upliftment of the Bedar(hunters) community, has spread literacy and has instilled the self confidence in the youth of the community,some of them have become IAS and IPS officers and well educated young men from the community are leading the community,in itself, was a thrilling experience. He also shared his experiences in upliftment of Devadasis(women dedicated to god)movement.

The participants paid a visit to Ramakrishin Ashrama. The statue of Swami Vivekanand in the meditation hall fascinated every one with a feeling that Swami Vivekanand was speaking to them. Swamiji of Ramakrishnamath explained the social activities undertaken by the math and guided the activists. The activists spent nearly two hours in a serene atmosphere of the math and participated in pooja, meditation and Bhanjans. 

Sri. Ganesh Shenoy, All India sahayojana pramukh of Ekal Vidyalaya and Prant karyakarta pramukh Sri. Mohan Rao, were with the participants through out the varg. He gave spiritual and emotional inspiration to the karyakartas quoting Bhagawadgita and Nirvanashataka of Sri. Shankaracharya. In his address in the samarop samarambha on 5.09.2007, Sri Dilip Naik, Gen.Secy,Ekal Abhiyan , Belgaum Branch, assured the Karyakartas the whole hearted support and involvement of entire committee and appealed them to rededicate themselves for the noble cause. Sri. Suresh Hundre, President, Ekal Abhiyan (Karnataka) and Sri. Nandakishore Nikharge, Belgaum Anchal samanwaya pramukh were present and also spoke on the occasion.

Ekal Updates - Schools

Ekal updates - Ekal Vidyalaya

Current: Number of Ekal Schools: 23,189 Number of Children: 695,670


Upcoming Events

EVF Australia's Annual General Meeting on 21st October 2007

The Annual General Meeting of EVF Australia for the period ending 30th June 2007 will be held as detailed below:
 
Date:Sunday, 21st October 2007
Time:10:00 am
Place:39 Bridge Street Epping
EVF Australia's AGM 2007

Sri Subhash Chandra, EVFI Chairman to visit USA

Shri Subhas Chandra, Chairman of Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of India, will be visiting several cities of USA in October for Ekal promotion. This is on the invitation of the Ekal – USA. His tentative programme includes visit to Tampa, Houston, Los Angles, San Jose, Chicago, Detroit, Washington, New York and New Jersey.

Two days Medical Training Camp on 6th & 7th October 2007

Arogya Yojna will have medical training camp on 6th & 7th Octber 2007 for 3 states - Karnataka, Kerala & Tamil Nadu. That will be done by 3 prominent lady doctors from bangalore on anemia and malnutrition.

Seminar of Ekal Sansthan

Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of India's R&D Wing - Ekal Sansthan, is going to organize a Seminar - 'Empowerment of Tribal & Rural Bharat', at following venue on 8-9 December, 2007:

Chinmaya Mission
89, Lodhi Estate, 
New Delhi - 110 003

We hereby invite academicians, educationist, experts in Social and preventive medicine, Experts in RTI and other allied subjects relevant to the activities of the Sansthan and theme of the seminar willing to participates as a speaker, please register your expression of interest: Register Now

Advertisement and sponsorship opportunities are available for advertising on web site, souvenir, venue and literature being published on the occasion. Sponsorship opportunities are available for whole event, kit, lunch hoardings etc. Please register your interest and we shall be pleased to discuss it with you: RegisterNow

Fore more please visit the website: www.ekalsansthan.org


Ekal Marathon - USA



Next Ekal Marathon is to be held in Houston.

For Houston Ekal Marathon write to Sri Ramesh Shah at his email id - ramesh@ekalvidya.org or call at (281) 933-6169 cc to Smt. Meera Kapur at - meerak@prodigy.net 

For more please visit the website: www.ekalmarathon.com

Ekal Dandiya at North California on Saturday, October 13, 2007



Ekal Global Learning (EGL) Tour 2008

Here is an Ekal Global Learning (EGL) opportunity to participate the great Ekal Movement in a well-known way.

This year the EGL Tour is scheduled (as given below) for incredible part of India - North East, where the Life moves at a serene pace. The North-East is India's chief tribal area. It comprises of the 7 states of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura, which collectively is called 7 Sisters. These beautiful states make for a rich and colourful study for any anthropologist.

You are cordially invited to plan your vacation in India along with your relative ones.

For more, please write to us at sangitaagupta@gmail.com or contact at - 91-11-09811076073.

 
 DateVenueProgramme
 5th Jan.08GuwahatiWelcome by Guwahati Chapter & Database Workshop Visit
Parichay Baithak with Guwahati Chapter Members
 6th Jan.08NogaonWelcome by Nogaon chapter, Vidyalya Visit
Acharya Abhyash Varg
Night at Kaziranga National Park, G. L. Resort
 7th Jan.08GolaghatVidyalaya Visit, Sankul Dakshata Varg
At Night to Tinsukia by Train
 8th Jan.08TinsukiaWelcome by Tinsukia Chapter
Model Village Visit, Arogya Sevika Varg
Gram Vikas Krishak Seva Visit
 9th Jan.08DibrugarhAnchal Vyavastha Varg, Dibrugarh Anchal
Vidyalaya Visit
Departure to Delhi by Sahara Airlines
 

Misc

Dr. Suneel Mahajan and Jayashree Mahajan's visit to Ekal Vidyalaya in Leh

This past April, some of my friends and I helped put on a Penn Masala concert to benefit Ekal Vidyalaya at my high school in Jacksoville, Florida. A group of us from our schools “Desi Club” gathered together and recruited our friends to try to raise as much money as we could for Ekal through this concert. Deep down, we all knew that our efforts were going to a good cause, but it was not until my family visited an Ekal school in Leh, India that I realized how grateful these children were for the support and education they were receiving through the foundation.

When my family visited the school, the children were working on their reading and writing skills on the patio of a house. Their ages ranged from three to 12 and each one seemed to be thoroughly interested in learning his or her material. As we entered, they looked up at us and once they found out that we were from America and were there to visit with them, they were very keen on showing us all that they knew. Almost every child stood up and put on some sort of performance, whether it was singing, dancing, or reciting his or her ABC’s. We were very impressed by their dedication, considering that the Ekal school in Leh was not an actual school, but it instead served as an after school program. Therefore, these children went to school and then did extra work at this Ekal program, which was run on only 365 dollars per year, or a dollar a day. The directors of the program were in the process of gaining permission from the government to make the program a legal full day school. 

The Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation has set a goal of establishing 100,000 schools by 2012. Although this seems like a hefty goal, in actuality, it can easily be reached. All that is needed is willing people who are eager to participate in the enlightenment and education of India’s children for only a dollar a day. It is our responsibility to spend the money we earn wisely, and this is indeed a wise investment. I urge you to please consider donating to this cause, for it is only a dollar a day. After witnessing the light in these children’s eyes, I can see that any donation of any amount is well worth it.

My family and I only spent about half an hour with the students, but it was enough for me to realize the difference that each donation makes in the education and development of these children. Now I understand that although the concert here in Jacksonville was a great source of entertainment, it meant so much more to the children of Ekal Vidyalaya. The funds that we raised and the awareness that the concert spread will provide them with both an education and a ray of hope for the future.

Ekal updates - Arogya:

Current: Number of Arogya Sevikas and Centres: 11,324

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