Newsletter June 2018

Unforgettable Musical Journey results in generous donations for the Ekal cause


Chitaranjan Desai

On 28th April 2018, Ekal Vidyalaya’s Chicago Metro North Chapter celebrated its 5th year anniversary by hosting an unforgettable musical journey of “Prem Ras” by Kaushik Despande and group.The event started with a celebratory dinner for all the guests followed by an amazing nonstop entertainment.  Steve Lentz, Mayor of Mundelein, welcomed the attendees. Illinois Senator Dick Durban congratulated Ekal Chicago Metro North on its 5th year anniversary and applauded the cause of raising awareness and funding for the underprivileged in India. 
The show theme of Prem Ras was a big hit with the audience as they sang, danced and reminisced the night away. Similar fund raising programs throughout the Central Region resulted in raising funds for 1,174 Ekal Vidyalayas. The chapters include: Chicago Metro (North and south) raising 750 Vidyalayas, Bloomington with 205 Vidyalayas, new chapter in Springfield raised 65 Vidyalayasand Milwaukee, WI chapter with 154 Vidyalayas.

 

Expansion of EGF activities in Nepal


On 26th April 2018, land spread over an area of about 10 acres in Jitpur, Birganj was donated by Shri Ram Chandra Sarraf for Gramothan (GRC) activities. This will be the first effort of GRC in Nepal. The decision was taken in the presence of Shri Naresh Jain (Executive President, EGF), Shri Lalan Sharma (Organizing Sec., EGF), Shri Naresh Kumar (Trustee), Shri Vineet Lohia (Trustee), Sanjay Jain (BLSP), Sunil Agarwal (Treasurer, Ekal Nepal). A meeting was held in Kathmandu and Birgunj over the expansion plan of GRC in Nepal. It was decided to expand and operate GRC in each of the 7 states of Nepal.

 

Lifetime Achievement Award for Ekal, USA Executive Director


Smt Ranjani Saigal, Executive Director, Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of USA (EVFUSA) was given ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ from the Commonwealth of Massachussetts, Asian American Commision – A Proud moment for entire EKAL family.
On receipt of the award she said “I am truly overwhelmed and humbled to get all the lovely notes from so many of you congratulating me on my "Lifetime Achievement Award". To get loving messages from so many of you is truly a lifetime of achievement. I thank Lord Nataraja for bringing all of you into my life and making it a blessed life with your love. When we leave this world we take nothing material with us. However the love you have given me and the learning I have had from each one of you is deeply embedded in my soul and I am positive I will take it with me. Mangalam Shubam. Thank you for your support in so many aspects of my life!”

 

Video conferencing with Ekal Village


Trainees from tailoring center interacted with donors over video conference call during the fund raising event organized in Ekal, Connecticut. The project is a part of integrated village development program in Shikharji sanch in Parasnath area. The project is being sponsored by Shri Adish and Smt Asha Jain from USA.

 

Ekal Cleveland support to marathon


For the  7th consecutive year Ekal Cleveland has been providing water to RiteAid Cleveland marathon runners (50,000), a local volunteering effort that has a large impact on runners from all walks of life.Runners appreciate with a namaste.

 

LEGO Robotics Camp


Ekal LEGO® Robotics Boot Camp will be held on 14th July 2018 at Tufts University. It will be a fun filled boot camp where the participating student will learn basic bot building and coding using the Lego Mindstorms EV3 software and kit. This boot camp is a hands-on course which will introduce the student to the vast world of LEGO® Robotics through interactive presentations, robot building and programing. It’s open to 3rd graders to middle schoolers who are interested in learning robotics and students who are interested in FLL competitions. They will gain from the insights provided by the instructor who is an FLL veteran.
The instructor Shri Akash is a rising freshman at Shrewsbury High School this fall. He has led his First Lego League team to 3 consecutive FLL state championship tournaments at WPI. Throughout his years in LEGO® Robotics he was the lead programer of his team. His team's bot placed second in the Shrewsbury qualifier, from where they went on to winning the second place Programing award at the FLL WPI state championship [Dec 2016]. Akash has also volunteered to help 5th and 6th graders in the Math Club run at Sherwood Middle School and enjoys working with kids.

For Registration and more details please log on to :
https://www.ekal.org/…/cam…/ekal-lego-reg-robotics-boot-camp

 

Gulabi Gaanv (pink village) near Nasik


Sanjay Malviya

The whole Binthghar village near Nasik in pratapgad is completely painted in Pink and we thought India only had a Pink city. It is also been voted as the cleanest village in its district!  
When Ekal Abhiyan started its EKal Vidyalaya in the tribal villages of Vananchal region, it was very miserable, deprived of access route, no means of transport, no means of employment, agriculture inadequacy, no proper arrangement for education, drought-prone with poverty and health problems.
Within 4 to 5 years of the village starting Ekal Vidyalaya, the villagers took initiative to maintain the village healthy, clean through the awareness programs conducted by Ekal Vidyalaya. Villagers took an interest in education and learning. Children were taught rites of education in addition to other subjects.
As part of village education they learnt a lot about cleanliness, health, self-reliance and rural development, organic farming and in the evening all sit together and do group discussions too. In one such discussion, the village head asked what should be done to spread the ‘message of equality’ in the whole village. It was then decided that every house in the village should be painted pink for the message of uniformity, as pink was the colour of the Ekal Vidyalaya in the village.
Now the whole village has been painted in pink and every street in the village is completely clean.

 

Ekal FRESH launched


Under the initiative of Social entrepreneurship to promote agri-businesses in rural and tribal area, EGF launched its first product (organic turmeric) during its annual NEC (National Executive Committee) meeting and on the occasion of Srimad Bhagwat Geeta Path organized in Rishikesh (Uttarakhand) on 11th April 2018. This launch ceremony was held with the blessings of one of the eminent kathakar and a hindu spiritual guru, Swami Shri Govind Dev Giri. The event marked the presence of Shri Indermohan Agarwal (President, EGF), Shri Chandrakant Raipat (President, Ranchi Chapter, EGF) and many other eminent persons from Ekal. Organic haldi procured from the virgin hills of Jharkhand have high curcumin content and is beneficial for its various medicinal values. It will be marketed under the brand name of Ekal Fresh.
SHG: Employment through Empowerment
EGF has started a new innovative model of SHG formation of empowerment through tailoring training and further linking them to employment. This has resulted in a new socio-economic business in handicraft industry where GRC is acting as a production hub. A pilot project at GRC Gajraula and Tinsukia has been done to assess the feasibility of this model.

 

Suresh Iyer visits GRC, Kanarnjo


Shri Suresh Iyer, President and CEO of Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of USA and his wife Smt Kanak Iyer visited GRC centre at Karanjo, Jharkhand. They spent a day there, discussed and shared their views over various interventions at GRC centre and in nearby villages.

 

Computer labs in Ekal villages


SBI Cards has sponsored 2 mobile computer labs to spread digital literacy under CSR. Ekal is emerging harbinger of bringing digital literacy to remote dwellers of India.
The 14th and 15th mobile computer labs to spread digital literacy in Ekal villages being flagged off by Shri H Prasad, MD of SBI Cards. Equipped with laptops/tabs running on solar power this bus will provide training to children & youth in Telangana and Gurgaon.

 

Chapter on Ekal mentor in Lexicon's book


Lexicon has included Ekal’s mentor Shri Shyamji Gupt in its book "Entrepreneurship, Start Up India & Stand Up India," as one of the ‘Leading Social Entrepreneurs in World.’

 

Ekal Parivarthan Kumbh


In continuation of Ekal Abhiyan’s efforts for empowering rural society for the last 30 years, the program - Parivarthan Kumbh has been fixed to showcase the disclosure of social change in the society. The epicenter of planning mechanism and preparation of the program will be Lucknow.
The inaugural function at Lucknow on 12th May 2018, was conducted with rituals in the presence of  Shri Shyamji, Mentor - Ekal movement, National coordinator Shri Madhavendra Singh and Shri Bhim Aggarwal.
While addressing this holy occasion, Shri Shyamji Gupt said that there was an atmosphere of despair in society even after independence. Ekal Abhiyan has got the opportunity to overcome this disappointment by bringing smiles in the faces of 40 crore tribal brethren.  Seeing Ekal’s track record the society has recognized it and is seeing Ekal as a ray of hope for development.

 

Birthday celebration with Ekal children


On 5th May, Piyush Kothari of Varanasi Maheshwari Club, an active member and donor of Varanasi celebrated the birthday of his daughter Mishthi with children of EKAL Vidyalaya adopted by Maheshwari Club. Transportation was arranged to pick and drop the children of Ekal Vidyaladaya situated 10 km away from the city. The children were taken to a Mall where they enjoyed playing games and tasting various dishes. The effort of Piyushji is not only commendable but also exemplary.

 

Workshop conducted on Education by Ministry of HRD Government of India


Prof Manju Srivastava, President Ekal Sansthan, presented modules of Ekal Vidyalaya as the best practices of innovative and creative Education in rural and tribal villages of India.
The two-day conference cum workshop was attended by Central Minister Shri Prakash Javdekar, State Minister of Punjab Ms Aruna and several Chief Secretaries from Education ministry. Shri Anil Swaroop, Secretary, Department of School Education, Literacy MHRD, Government of India appreciated Ekal Vidyalaya's presentation on non-formal education model and community reach of Ekal with stress on local participation and ownership.

 

Ekal Sansthan - Chennai Study Circle launched


Ekal Sansthan was formed in year 2008 to support Ekal Abhiyan-the parent body, in Research & Development, Communication Strategies, Training & Capacity Building of volunteers, Strategic Interventions, Decision Making Support to create avenues in urban areas to bridge the gap between rural & urban communities. To achieve the above objective, the concept of Ekal study circle meet was conceptualized in 2014.
Ekal Study Circle is an open ended platform for exchange of ideas, debate & discussion, sharing of best practices from different corners, creating a bank of ideas & rural innovations directly from the grass-roots. Professionals with conviction to serve the rural Bharat, NGOs, Social Enterprises, Rural Entrepreneurs & the youth who can really make a big difference can participate here.
On May 21st Chennai Study Circle of Ekal Sansthan was launched. The launch function was attended by Smt Manjushree, President, Ekal Sansthan and Shri Praveen Arya, Vice President, Ekal Sansthan. Dr S Venkataraman, Senior consultant, UNESCO delivered keynote address on SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS on Education of UNESCO and compared it with EKAL’s accomplishment. Dr. Lalitha Balakrishnan, Principal, M.O.P Vaishnav College for women, Chennai, spoke on “Ethics and Education.” She started her speech by saying - Ye Kal ki Bath thi? Ye kal ki Bath hai? Ya, ye EKAL ki bath hai.
Dr Gowri Ramachandran would be the convenor of Chennai Study Circle of Ekal Sansthan.

 

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