Partnering with ArriveSafe, Dream India conducted a drawing competition for children in the Government school in Valasarawakkam, Chennai on the 1st of November. Though we did not get selected for the final round, the kids did extremely well and managed to bring out the best of their knowledge by way of drawings. The volunteers used this opportunity to thrust the importance of good traffic culture, to the kids. The drawings can be seen below
On Nov 14th, we had a fun filled Children's day celebration at Adyar school.
The event started with explaining some facts about Nehru ji & his family tree. Students were asked to speak few sentences in English about Children's day. Then, both 8th & 9th students were combined & grouped into 3 teams.
The first event was 'Dumb Charades'. It was really entertaining when the students were trying to do some action about the personality. They were taught to break up the name of a person & then to explain. They really enjoyed it.
Next event was 'Man Hunt'. Students were explained about the rules of the game & personalities were given for each team in tandem. Though there was chaos in raising questions by the kids, towards the end they understood the game well.
Lot of enthu was displayed by the students. Chocolates were distributed to the kids.
Two Students from each team was given the prize for their active participation in the event.
All the kids were gifted with a yellow colored Smiley ball as children's day gift.
Navaneethan, a 9th standard student was given gift & round of applause for being the Overall best student for this year. Few other students were mentioned for their merits.
The day was really memorable for the students as well for volunteers.
I am extremely happy to share the wonderful news that with the help of Mr.Gunasekaran, we have started our very first "Dream India sports club" for Mayanoor school children.
It has been dream of a few of our friends in DI to create awareness about physical activities and provide a platform to bring the talent of children in various sport. It is then, we met Mr.Gunasekaran sir, HM of Mayanoor school. Sir told me about his dream of starting a sports club for the children and with the consent of our trustees, we decided to execute this project.
Our friend, Manikandan [ DI Mumbai and Chennai volunteer] would sponsor this sports club entirely on his own. Dream India also thanks Mr.Gunasekaran for giving us a chance to start this sports club and for his wonderful support.
A brief note on Mr.Guna sir: He gave up his lucrative job overseas and came back to India with a burning desire to become a teacher. The students of Mayanoor are the one blessed to have Mr.Guna as their HM. Sir is one of the action board members of our Partner India Sudar.
It is important to note that Mr.Guna sir is gonna take care of the payment to the coach every month on his own. We cannot find a better person than Mr.Guna sir to start this sports club.
Dream India conducted Science Exhibition at Adyar Government School on 21.11.09 for the students of Class 8 and 9.
The Students split themselves into 12 teams consisting of 2 to 4 students. A whole gamut of topics were selected which included Rain water harvesting, Electric train, Periscope, Optical Illustration Using Lenses, Glass Moulding, Parts of human body, Importance of Wild life, A walking robot, Essentials of Vitamins, Pedal Car, Global Warming, Park, Volcano, Electrical Conductivity, Few Chemical Experiments etc.
We were surprised with the creativity that these students demonstrated knowing that they never had the opportunity to organise an exhibition or visit one!
It was very tough to decide the winners as most of the students excelled in their creations. The winners were announced based on creativity, cost, communication skills, presentation and teamwork. There was an unanimous decision for the first prize winner as they stood out from others through their demonstration skills, low cost and the simple yet interesting product. There were 2 second prize and 3rd prize winners. We also gave 2 special prize.
The models were displayed to all the school students on Monday.At the end of the show, both the students and the volunteers were glad at the outcome. We hope to have similar events in the future.
On behalf of Action2020 team and India Vision2020 team, Poornima, Janakiraman, Nagappan, Ponmudi and myself, we had the privilege to attend the "For the sake of Honour Award" function held at Taj yesterday evening.
Dr.Irai Anbu I.A.S graced the function and conferred the award to Payir Senthil. In his acceptance speech, Senthil once again reiterated his dream on bringing a change in thinking and lifestyle and not just the developmental aspect of villages.
Dr.Irai Anbu's speech was simply amazing. He appreciated Senthil's wonderful work and also offered to extend all possible support.
I also would like to mention about President of Rotary club Esplanade, Mr.Govindarajan. It was almost 15 months ago he got to know about Senthil. But since then he has been following up with Senthil regularly on Payir's development and has extended support at all possible levels. Mr.Govindarajan also expressed happiness about our Action2020 team and his desire to work together to achieve our mission.
Overall, it was a wonderful evening and on behalf of IV2020 and Action2020 team, we once again congratulate Payir Senthil and thank Rotary club of Esplanade for honouring the most deserving person.
Please visit www.Payir.org for more details on this amazing NGO.
Amidst all the fun times of the festival season, we also continued with our educational scholarships. Smt. Anitha Prabhu from mNellore had scored pretty good marks but was unable to fund her college admissions completely due to her poor financial conditions. Having heard about this from our partner trust India Sudar (Light of India), we pitched in with some percentage of the requirement. We hope to see Smt Anitha complete her education with flying colors and make her parents proud.
All our children thoroughly enjoyed celebrating Diwali and the smiles in their faces left us all satisfied.
This year we bought crackers for Rs.5000 which was distributed to the following homes:
1) Anna Nagar class
2) Adyar class
3) V'Vakam class
4) Vasantham and
5) SV Home
We also bought sweets for our children. KK visit happened exactly a week before diwali and we gave 30rs for each grandmas as stitching charge apart from dinner. They were very happy and blessed all our members.
I would like to share about the diwali celebration which we had it in our DI Valasaravakkam School on 11.10.09 (Sunday). We arrived in the school around 10.00 a.m. We waited for the kids to come and settle down. By 10.30 we started our celebration. First, we asked the students to come and speak a few words about what DIWALI meant to them ? Also, we asked them to share about their previous diwali experiences. Unforgettable incidents, their activities on that day, etc., We volunteers also gave them a brief description about DIWALI and its significances.
Next, we had sweets distribution. We had only very few number of students. The school watchman also co-operated with us. He too enjoyed seeing the kids coming up and speaking about DIWALI and singing songs about diwali.
We started bursting the crackers. The kids were showing keen interest in burning the crackers. We volunteers also bursted along with them.
Throughout the bursting session, we vols ensured that no kid is bursting alone. We had constant monitoring on them. We took photos of it. Nata, you could have also joined us in the celebration today. Thank you very much for your efforts to get the crackers for our DI.
The photos are aired in my picasa album.
The link : http://picasaweb.google.com/kkaravindhan/DreamIndiaValasaravakkamDiwaliCelebration#
I really thank all the volunteers who made a wonderful effort in giving the kids 'A DIWALI FEEL'.
NB: Sriram & Bharath, we all really missed you. All the students conveyed their diwali wishes to you.
Yesterday, I wrote about the meeting with our former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam. He met 70 representatives from 30 constituent organisations of Action 2020 Team or online India Vision Group at Chennai. Dr Kalam spent nearly two hours with the members sharing his views. At the end of his 30 minute speech, all the members were highly motivated with positive energy. Thereafter he spent his time taking questions from the members and guiding them for Nation building.
We are now releasing his 30 minute speech as Part 1.
Please watch the photos and also listen to the speech of Dr Abdul Kalam in the following link:
Like last year, we celebrated Gandhi Jayanthi at SV home this year too.
We started the Quiz Preliminary round around 9 AM. 50 students from SV home and 3 kids from Adyar school appeared for this. Janu and Ravin conducted the prelims.
This was followed by Elocution competition. Around 20 students from SV Home and Adyar school spoke. For the first time, the students also spoke in English. It was simply amazing to say the least. For someone who has seen the children speak last year, the performance has improved very well. It was a sight to see the children speak very confidently on stage and then run on to hug Kamala madam with huge relief. They had put in a lot of efforts and we could see the results very well.
Dr.Subash, Janakiraman and Sreeja were the judges for the Elocution competition. Snacks was served during the break.
After the snack break, children sang some patriotic songs, played a skit and a couple of dances. The songs and drama had very good meaning and brought the creativity of the students to the stage.
Thanks to Vasantham Mrs.Alli madam, we could get couple of rice, sweet, and couple of side dish all included for just rs.30 per person. Last time we had to spend more than 1500 extra, but madam took pains for us to order food for Vasantham and then send it from there for us. This saved us a lot of money and also gave us more variety to serve the kids.
Ice cream was given after lunch and it was time to start the quiz program.
Ravin, our official DI quiz master, started the quiz program. 9 teams of 3 each was selected and after various rounds of eliminations, 3 teams emerged as winners. It was good to see Adyar kids being part of SV home teams and work together and emerging winners. Janu shared on the areas the kids needs to work on to improve their general knowledge.
Around 8 Vasantham kids came along with madam. Shridhar and Jaikar Ganesh participated in elocution competition. This was the very first time the special kids of Vasantham participated in a program along with normal children. Special thanks to SV home kids and Kamala madam who encouraged the children to participate.
Every single person present was taken by surprise when these kids spoke without any kind of struggle or stage fear. It was just a perfect speech. Later, we came to know that Shridhar could not even stand up and walk when he joined Vasantham six years ago. He could not even speak then. All of us at DI can be proud that our function served us a platform for a special kid to display his special talent. His transformation is an example of dedication and the divine work done by Vasantham. His father had come in the evening and when he learned about Shridar winning prize [ We gave special prize to all Vasantham kids ] along with trophy, he could not stop breaking down.
Sathish, the cute and lovable kid of Vasantham, danced to a mixture of songs and this was followed by a group song. Sathish became a hero and all children mobbed him to shake hands with him.
Prize Distribution and Cultural:
Mr.Suresh Kamath, MD, Laser Soft, Mr.Murugesan and Mrs.Alli Murugesan joined Dr.Subash as chief guests for the prize distribution function. DI friends gave special memento for chief guests made by Vasantham children. Dr.Subash gave a wonderful speech and took time to congratulate Sathish for his wonderful dance performance. Mr.Suresh Kamath was humble and graceful as ever. Mrs.Alli Murugesan thanked DI and SV home for giving a platform for special children along with other kids.
The kids were very happy with the prizes. First prize winners got 4 books, trophy and a certificate. Second prize winners got 3 books, trophy and a certificate while third prize winners got 2 books, trophy and a certificate. For the first time, we gave a small token of gift to each of the children who performed a dance or drama or song.
Janu thanked everyone on behalf of DI, couple of kids shared their thoughts and later Kamala madam delivered vote of thanks. Later we took a few group snaps. Janu, Arunan and myself stayed back to discuss about studies and other things with children.
I take pride in sharing the message from Mr.Suresh Kamath sir - "Dear Natarajan and all Dream India friends, thank you for inviting me and giving me an opportunity to be with you and see those beautiful children smile.Honestly, you inspire me. For me, Dream India is really Dreams come true. God bless you all. Warm regards, Kamath".
The above message is a true reflection of sir's kindness and humbleness.
Sreeja, Kavitha, Arunan, Poornima, Manivanan [ YHM ], Janu, Ravin and Parthy took care of conducting the event smoothly. The event at SV home would have always been special, but this time, the presence of Vasantham kids only made the event very special. DI can certainly be proud of doing things first time and this event is an example of the good work God has chosen us to execute.
It gives me immense pleasure to share about our DI Valasaravakkam project - 2. As part of our second project we planned to visit 'Ramamoorthy educational & rehabiliation trust ', a home for parentless children on sep.20 (sunday).
We DI vols reached the home by 9.15 a.m. and had a brief introduction with the kids & trustee. We also had a special guest Miss.Shobana, HR of L & T with us.
Then we started with prayer.Our first event was 'Word Anthakshiri'. We had this event to enrich their vocabularly and develop spontanity.That seems to be very interesting. We gave chocolates to the winner and runner.
Our next event is 'Passing the ball'. Something like 'Musical chair'. We'l play a music and kids need to pass the ball from their hand to others without dropping it. It was very interesting towards the end.
Third event was 'mini snow bowling'. We piled up the cups and asked the kids to come in turn and throw the ball towards the cup. One who made least number of cups intact will qualify for next level (i.e., We'l extend the distance of meters). Again one who made least number of cups intact declared as the winner. To our surprise we had a many close calls. So, we equally gave them the chocolates as prizes.
Next we played 'Dumbsharabs'. We splitted 20 kids into 2 teams and we vols joined in their team and played along with them. Category was film names. Many came up with tough names that we couldn't guess it.
Then we had lunch from 12.30 p.m. - 1.30 p.m.
Post lunch we started with the 'screening of Tom & Jerry' cartoon. This is the most interesting of all. Kids were enjoying to their core & laughing out loud, by there alomost we came to know about our success. We provided with the snacks like biscuits, juice, chips (One of our vol[Ashik] bought it from Kerala) to them while watching the toon at 3.30 p.m.
I prepared a feedback form and asked them to fill it up and give me. I asked the kids to 'feel free in writing'. I'l go thourgh it, scan and send you soon.
In the end we had some culturals like asking the kids those who are interested in singing, dancing, doing mimicry, poem reciting. They voluntarily came up the performances which were too good. Finally, we asked few kids to come up and speak about the day's events and how they felt. All were happy in attending our sessions.
I hereby take this opportunity to thank HR of L & T Miss.Shobana for coming and spending her day with kids and DI team.
Last Sunday, September 6th, our team visited Kaakum Karangal old age home and provided dinner to the residents as a part of our monthly visit.
They were all very happy to see us after almost 3 to 4 weeks. One of the paati's (grandmas) sang a prayer song and this was followed by usual prayer. They have been asking for some cash to be given for the monthly expense like getting extra tablets, drinking coffee etc. We have started giving 20rs each [ 36 residents ] for this purpose.
Sometime back, we got hearing aid for a kid called Madhumitha from Pondicherry. This family was known to us through my brother. Father lost his job because of recession in export clothing units. He is now doing electrician work as and when he gets. Ms.Hemalatha, mother of Madhu had to undergo cornea replacement surgery. The total cost was around 8000rs and they approached us for assistance.
Upon verifying the case, it was decided that we can partially support by paying Rs.5000. I am also discussing with my brother about finding some employment opportunity for Madhu's father and empowering her mom through some vocational training.
We got a medical request from our Bangalore team for Baby Sanmitha's operation. This kid was adopted by Mr.Mahesh and recently they discovered that the kid is suffering from hearing disability. The operation costs around 12 lacs. From DI side, if you remember, we had collected funds for Pune kid Babli's operation recently. We had some amount from that collection and contributed 25k for this project.
Visited Sishumandir on Sunday along with Udhay. We wanted to meet up with the new teacher who will be take over as previous teacher left us. Previous teacher Mrs.Yashoda served us really well. She left because of health reasons. We wish her a speedy recovery.
Currently there are 22 students. the average varies between 40 to 20.
Current year has seen some good adoption from public(More than 100 kids adopted !)
The new teacher also seems to be enthusiatic candidate.
Details of Teacher :
Name : Ms. Mala
Age : 20
Qualification : PUC
Due to unfortunate cisrcumstances, had to leave her husband and come to banglore city. Orginally from rural bangalore. Currently she is with Govt Wome's home in the same campus as Sishu mandir. She has 2 year old kid also.
The home officer Ms.halima interviwed her earlier and shortlisted.
We find he ok to proceed with our current project.
Since she is also in the same campus it will be useful and also we see this as oppurtunity to give a push to her life also. Both ways a win -win for us.
Sishu Mandir project in Bangalore was one of the first projects we started partnership with Dream India team & has been successfully completed 3 years.We will continue our association for the 4th consecutive year also for this project.
Once again our sincere thanks to Dream India for partnering with us on our journey ! Its been a pleseant experience as always
Will update all once we prepare the project report !
Our friend Shyam is now doing his MBA at PSG and has started our Coimbatore chapter. As you all know, Shyam has been a pillar of support for DI Chennai at Adyar school and was mainly responsible for the Pollachi educational festival we conducted last year.
It is no wonder that a guy of his energy level has taken the next step to start our new chapter. Along with our YHM friends and his college friends in Coimbatore, we have taken the first step of activating DI chapter at this city.
We need volunteers, especially girl volunteers for the project mentioned below.
Location : Gandhi ma nagar (Next to peelamedu Level crossing)
Genre :Ment for only girls from 1 std to 12th std
Requirement:Part time volunteers Especially Girls (Like as explained before) little fluent in tamil*
Classes on:Only sundays between 2pm to 5 pm
Please spread the word and help us find more volunteers.
On behalf of all our chapters across India, I wish Shyam and our DI Coimbatore friends all the very best.
We have got a very good development at our classes for 9th standard students. As you all are aware, Navaneethan is already enrolled for lower level typing exam for the past 3 months. A few others promised to join on their own, but I found that they did not. When I checked, I found most of them did not get enough support from their family.
Last Saturday, I could luckily visit their families. I told them all about enrolling the kids and they readily agreed. As an incentive, we are paying their first month fee and have clearly told the students that they should come to us only if their family situation really turns bad and cannot pay for them. All their parents are daily wagers and they in housing board colony near my area.
Today, the kids came to give the receipts to me and know what - Looks like when the news about their enrollment spread, many more students [ not part of our DI classes ] enrolled and are continuing the course. It is like "goodness spreads goodness". I can vouch that our students are becoming examples for others, the ideal situation we are all working towards.
Also, even the students who are not good in subjects seems to be doing very well on the typing course. It is our duty to ensure the inner talent of the kids are found and addressed so that they become better citizens tomorrow.
Plan is to have our 17 kids from 9th should clear the lower level exam by Feb 10. I would be talking to remaining kids this week. The project costs Rs.1120 for 7 students, but the benefit cannot be expressed in terms of any value. Attached the project documents for your reference.
It has been a great journey with all possible and different kinds of emotions (many never enjoyed before) with Dream India. For more than a year and half, the attachment with DI has made a huge difference within me.
I still remember the day when my brother Bharath Ram and I went the residence of the HM of Alapakkam govt. School. We went with all doubts abt what will be his response for us to take classes during weekends. The previous year the classes were handled by Varun and Aparna. Its bcos of their great efforts, he agreed to our request to continue taking classes. I still hear the words uttered by him. He told "Service to poor Students is Service to GOD himself". Great man he is...
We were much excited to get nearly 30 students for the classes, with the help of the HM. Then gradually the numbers decreased, may be bcos our classes were similar to the one they had in school. Since it was the first experience for my brother and me. we concentrated much on academics. probably that was our fault. Then, my uncle donated his computer to the school, with which we started taking Computer classes. There were many weeks when only students less than 5 attended. But then we regularly went, at least in turns. We were a bit sad abt the no.of students, but the enthusiasm of ppl who came to the classes(Raja Raja cholan, Prakash & Manikandan) was big boost to us.
Towards the middle of last year, we had a great strengthening, as we were joined by Arunan. Then we three continued to come till the end. We were greatly impressed with the interest showed by the students. For all the efforts by three of us, we were able to make those students a little confident in their english and comfortable in handling computers.
In june, we had a review meeting with Nata, Varun and Aparna. We then learnt from our mistakes and planned to have more of activity based learning. And instead of concentrating on 8th std. students we planned to take 6th. Bharath got placed in BPCL and went to Mumbai. And Since I would be leaving soon, I was looking for someone to join Arunan to handle classes. Then Aravindhan joined us.
The greatest advantage for this year was that we actually gained more confidence form the HM. With that Aravindhan, Arunan and I again asked for some 30 std.6th students. To our surprise on the first day we got around 80 students. It was really great. Soon by God's grace we were joined by Aarthi, Ivor and Ashik and finally by Gajendran to guide students. This year, the reponse from the students and the school is great. We all conducted Drawing competition, Guest lecture from Dr.Ramani Sukumar and the MEGA event. All these I consider as a result of constant working of all of us. We need to get things going and do as many things as possible for the students who show such an unconditional love and affection for us.
29th Aug 2009 would be the most unforgettable day for me. It was really the most happiest day for me. I really missed Bharath on that day. He should have been there to see how his efforts resulted in such sweet fruits.
I would be taking with me all the sweet memories of this year and half assosication with DI, school and MY students. I pray the Almighty that I should finish my studies ASAP, come back and then should have similar opportunity to continue my second chapter with DI. I thank Nata and others, who have really guided us on the right path, so that we could do something useful to students.
Having taken such a professional course as career I have not thought about money requirement as CA is regarded as a cheapest course but having great value...but after getting through CA Inter for which most of the subjects I studied self , I really understood the difference of doing CA by self study and attending a class run by a qualified chartered accountant.
There finance was an obstacle where I could not ask my father who go for painting works and earn hardly hundred to two hundred rupees a week...
By grace of God I have joined an audit firm in Chennai to experience real face of my subjects...But stipends fixed by ICAI ( Our institute ) was very less ...it was just to cover hostel fees for me and my sister ( who has joined M Sc Plant biotechnology in Presidency college )
I had only self confidence and belief in God which directed me to search net for some helping hands....I have seen India Sudar and I talked to Mr Udayakumar ....On the very next day I have got a message and call from Natarajan sir ....and above all my hope....within the end of the day , they have done all arrangements for my request.
I dont know how to express my thankness to Natarajan sir and Parthiban sir for their effort to help me to join the two courses..
I have written CS Inter exams in June 09 and cleared in the first attempt itself...my CA final exam is in Nov 2010...my articleship with the auditor will be over after one year of writing final exams...I would like to join for CS final also.
More than having such course cleared certificates, I realise that some thing have to be done for others who are passing through the ways like mine.
But I could attend only one programme conducted by Dream India so far. Because of classes in sundays I am not able to participate Dream India..
But I will always pray God for the success in every step of our Institution....
I'm very glad to inform you all, that the celebration day which took place on aug.29 went in a very grand manner. We scheduled for various events.
Morning we had quiz prelims and followed by that is some cultural events (Song & Dance). From 10.30 we had tamil elocution and english elocution. Lunch was given around 12.30 p.m. Then we had the round of quiz. Students actively participated in the quiz and proved their mettle. By 3.30 our chief guest Mr.Shanmuga Sundaram (Chief Rotary club member) arrived and we started the prize distribution and concluded with our National Anthem.
I'm very happy to have the volunteers from "Young helping mind" org. I thank Nagappan, Poornima, Kartik.. for their efforts in making this event a grand succes.
We really missed you "NATA"..
We the DI team members along with the students gave a "HEARTFUL THANKS" to Sriram, who is leaving to U.S. in a couple of days for his higher studies.
He was really moved by it.
On the same day, our chief guest Mr.Shanmuga Sundaram gave us a grand dinner in "HOTEL GREEN PARK". He felt really happy, the way our Dream India gave a platform for students to excel in various competitions.
I once again personally thank all the members who made this function a grand succes.
Through one of our friends we got to know about student Ms.Sreen Fathima a final year CSE Engineering student. She has scored 75% so far without arrears. They got separated from father for some personal reasons and he stopped supporting all of a sudden.
Janu and myself spoke to Fathima, she sounds to be one of the most confident students I have ever come across [ Same as our Ponni]. She is very clear on what she wants to do and how she would want to shoulder her family. For 20 year old, the amount maturity she shows is amazing.
With complete confidence that Fathima would do wonders soon, our team is providing her partial support for Rs.15,000 towards her final year college fee. I am in discussion with her to find some opportunities for her younger brothers and sister. More on that later.
On behalf of Dream India, I wish Fathima all the very best for a bright future.
Our student Krishna Thaara whom we supported by paying fee for CS Inter and CA final has cleared Company Secertaryship[ CS ] Inter successfully.
She called me couple of days ago to inform this great news. She said even before calling anyone, she was calling DI to let us know about the results. The CA final exams are to happen sometime in the future soon. I am pretty sure she would come out with flying colors and make us all proud.
Thanks to Mr.Ravi from India Sudar, we could deploy couple of teachers at his village school. The teachers are doing wonderful job is the feedback we have from people. One of the teacher's wanted to move on due to personal reasons and Ravi has found another replacement teacher Ms.Gnanasundari. Her salary would be 1000rs per month.
Also, from this year we wanted to give Ms.Mary an increment of 300rs per month, so her salary would be 1500rs per month. Attached the project reports for the same. I shall forward another email where Ravi sent us the snaps of the village school.
Let us hope our efforts towards empowering kids would continue in right direction. Our sincere thanks to IS Mr.Udhay, Mr.Shiva and Mr.Ravi for their support.
When I visited Primary Welfare School, Vallam Village, Tharangambadi taluk last year,
There were around 98 students
It is kind of very remote village and you can reach through mini-bus twice or thrice in a day.
there were two teachers including headmaster.
I heard from HM that the other teacher goes on medical leave most of the time and he was badly looking for transfer as well
There were only three old classrooms and all were in very bad shape (it was dangerous).
Students were coming to school for mid day meal purpose
Even 5th Standard student could not read his text book fluently, when i interacted
This year update (27th July 2009)
- DI2020 deployed two teachers and we could see that proper school is running now.
- When I interacted few students, they were able to READ fluently
- Two new classrooms constructed with SSA funding and they will be moving to new classrooms soon
- When I visited on 27th July 2009, SSA inspector was there. She appreciated our work and told me that she would take this news to SSA.
- HM is quite happy with our support and he is very encouraging. He
Comment from Mid Day Meal teacher in the same school
"I'm here for more 28 years and happy to see the school is functioning with teachers and classes properly after so many years"
I would say Dream India 2020 has done a very good job for 92 vallam village student's education and created two rural employment by deploying two teachers as well.
Our student Srinivasan [ B.Tech Printing Technology at Anna University] called and shared the good news that he has scored 70% in fifth semester. He stands third in the class. Considering the fact Srinivasan works the whole day and carries on his education part time makes this achievement much more significant.
Today is one year completion after Registration of our Dream India. In addition to this, a great news to share from our side:
By 11.15 am today, there was sudden information regarding an opportunity to meet Dr. APJ Kalam Sir in Chennai Airport - VIP lounge.
He is traveling from Delhi – Coimbatore via Chennai. ( 2-3 hours - Waiting time in Chennai).
Nata informed me & Janu to make it to the event if possible. No second thought. Who could miss such an opportunity? Closed the System.
Started from office & reached airport by 12.00 noon. Janaki reached around 12.15 PM.
Prime point Srinivasan sir was the coordinator for this meet as usual. Thanks to him for informing us.
There were 4 people from an NGO in Kodambakkam Area, One from V-trust & Mr. Britto. In total there were 10 people.
The fact that surprised us is ‘Kalam Sir’s Time management’. He wants to Utilize this Waiting hours in airport by meeting people.
Waited for almost an hour. Flight was delayed. Sir & his team reached by 1.30 PM.
In another 5 mins, guards frisked us & we went to the VIP lounge. Entered the room around 1.40 PM.
Saw the man who is a source of inspiration to millions of we people in arm’s distance. Took his blessings & we sat on the floor.
He informed his security gaurds who were inside the room, to have seat outside.
He told it with a sense of humor that “These people are good people & no harm will happen to me”.
We don’t know how the next one hour went. He listened patiently to each one of us. Asked about the activities we do.
He suggested points to improve rural education. He insisted of teaching practical skills along with studies.
Ponraj sir, his PA took number of snaps. Special Thanks to him who again was a reason for this meeting.
Srinivasan sir, asked him to give message for the youngsters for which he narrated a story of a Swamiji & gave a Crux at the end of the story:
“When you give for others you get happiness’ – This is the Crux.
I have recorded this video clipping in my mobile. Will share it with you guys in couple of days.
I & Janu shared our college incident, that we entered one of the school in Jaipur, as school student in order to see him.
Also told him, that you questioned Janakiraman when he raised a question, that you don’t seem to be a school student. Kalam Sir laughed listening to our incident.
Taking this opportunity, I informed Kalam Sir about Vasantham School. He enquired about the strength of students & their activities.
When requested whether he would be able to come for 20th Year Celebration of Vasantham in November, he told that he may not able to join the function but would definitely visit the school during his tour in Chennai.
Finally we all took his Autograph & blessings again. We felt the Vibrancy in us.
Life time memorable occasion Friends. Thanks to God.
Dear friends,I wrote about the meeting of Dr Abdul Kalam with representatives of partner organisations of Action 2020 team on 11th August 2009. I want to share a very inspiring incident that happened during our meeting.
All the members introduced themselves individually to Dr Kalam and also shared in brief about their activities. Vinod, Founder of one of the Student organisations VTrust was also there. He introduced himself as 'Vinod' and shared the information about the activities of VTrust. Dr Kalam asked him what he was doing. He said, he had completed his B.Com in last April and was now planning to pursue his Company Secretary. Then Dr Kalam left him at that stage and moved to the next person.
After we finished our meeting, we took a group photograph. We started leaving the hall. At that time, Dr Kalam called 'Vinod' by name and told him "You are a socially conscious person. Why don't you try IAS. If you enter IAS, you can do many good things to the society". Immediately, Vinod agreed and sought his blessings prostrating before him. Vinod was holding in his hand, a brief note about VTrust. In his excitement, he forgot to handover the note. "Can I have this", asked Dr Kalam and took the note for his reading. Then we all left the room.
The story does not end here
After leaving the meeting, on the same day, Vinod started making round the entire City to find out the coaching centres for IAS. within 6 hours, he collected lot of information about IAS preparations, coaching centres, etc. "Dr Kalam has advised me to prepare for IAS and to become an IAS Officer. Definitely, I will join IAS and do great job to the society", says beaming Vinod.
I am sharing this with you only to exhibit how Dr Kalam inspires the younger generation. On behalf of the group, I wish Vinod all the best in his new goal of becoming an IAS officer
Vinod can be reached at vtrust.help (at) gmail.com and his contact number is 9884116235
Sebasting Britto Stephen Frendz For Life Family
The day August 11-2009, can be marked as one of the important day in my life. I had the golden opportunity of meeting this man, Whom I consider as my God- father .Dr APJ Abdul kalam .He was very happy to see the members of India vision group.Each one representing different NGO’s. I was there to represent (Frendz For Life) students family from Pondicherry. Srinivasan sir introduced everyone of us to Dr kalam .
First, I was little nervous, since I am meeting the missile man ,not as a normal person but the member of his action2020team .That was the first time I saw Dr kalam in person. I had all responsibilities to express him my worthiness to be in his team. Friends, I could say, I haven’t seen such a simple and humble person in my life .Even a child could understand his character in minute’s time. An experienced person at the age of 77 will like only to share his own views to youngsters rather listening to them. But Dr kalam patiently listened to us .what we say and also gave us suggestions just like a friend.
When my coordinator introduced me to Dr kalam, he saw me and smiled me .I introduced myself as Britto from Pondicherry and started my brief description of what kind of work we do for the society. I told him “When ever my students start any activities they will do in your (Dr kalam’s) name. We always work as told by you”.
Dr kalam looked every one of us and told us the story which had its theme as “What you achieve in your life as told by other person is not important. But, what you achieve for being born in this world in your name is important.”
The message was truly inspiring for me.
Some of the interesting Qualities I observed in Dr kalam
* Dr kalam is stalwart in technical knowledge, One of the renowned world leader in with vast social experience .A great teacher for his age of 77. person with all this credit will surely try to share their own experience; will like to give lectures to youth rather than listening to them. In about one hour of our meet, He was just listening to us for 40 minutes. He perceived completely what we do to society and gave us the friendly suggestion.
* When we entered inside the VIP lounge every one of us were nervous since we are about to meet a Ex-President of India,A Brahat Ratna awarded personality. When we came out after meeting him. We had only memories of chatting with a good old friend, a complete relaxed state. I hope you could perceive how friendly he would be then to speak.
* The car driver of Srinivasan sir, also wished to see Dr kalam. Having an handshake with Dr kalam was one of his greatest wish. Dr kalam made him to sit beside him equally, did a handshake with him and told “Your Hands are so hard. It shows Your hard work” .I saw the driver face that time. I could sense his harmony that his hard work in life got its meaning. That moment I realized the real meaning of equality and brotherhood from dictionary of Dr kalam.
* When we all left the room after taking his autograph .I told Dr kalam
“I can say FFL’s (My trust)works are in no way comparable to your
achievement sir But in future I will surely create at least two Abdul
Dr kalam’s for India “.
Dr kalam took my hand and said this beautiful Thirukural
“Ulliathu eiythal elithu matrunthan
Ulliathu ullap perin”
It means: When you set your mind determined on something. Just ensure you mind is set on it .You will achieve it for sure. Then I reliazed this man and Thirukural has moer similar “Short But Powerful”
With this we bid good bye to Dr kalam and left airport. Friends, I like to extend my hearty thanks to Srinivasan sir in this letter.My dream come true of meeting kalam became real because of him. He is doing the wonderful work of identifying the potential social workers and taking their works to Dr kalam. Lets all support Srinivasan sir and Indiavision2020 group and show to our country
Finally , we can now say that almost all the SSC students at our Mumbai centre have finally got their admission for STD XI.
Despite all the struggle with low percentage and family pressure, Geeta has taken admission in Science at Bhavani Shankar Junior College at Dadar. This is a college which is best example of a joint public and private sector participation, ie a joint venture between BMC and IIT-Pace academy .The BMC has tied up with a couple of IIT coaching classes to start three junior colleges this year.
While the civic body will provide the buildings, the coaching classes will run the colleges. Not only will the coaching classes prepare students for the Joint Entrance Exam to the Indian Institute of Technology, they will also hire regular staff for the college, including English and Hindi teachers.
These will be the first colleges started by the BMC, which has hitherto only run schools. All three colleges will offer the science stream. The colleges will be located at Vile Parle, Mulund and Dadar. One of the coaching classes, IITian’s Pace, will run the colleges at Mulund and Dadar, while the college at Vile Parle will be run by Yukti Classes.
Each college will have 100 seats, of which 50 will be reserved for BMC school children, and the remaining 50 for students from other schools
The fifty students from each college who are from BMC schools will be coached for the IIT-JEE free of cost. Fifty percent of their coaching fee will be borne by the coaching class and the rest will be borne by BMC
Geeta has got admission in Electrical maintenance , and the best part is that she does not have pay a single rupee as college fees and even her textbooks and all educational material will be provided free of cost.
Further no special tutorial classes as all the college professors are the ones who coach for IIT etc... excellent faculty.
Couldnt have asked for something better than this!!!
A special thanks to Pooja who had forwarded this piece of information.
Jayasundari has also got admission for General Science( Biology)at Vivek Vidyalaya ( Goregaon) which is also an aided college
Shubham and Rani and Sunita have also got through with their admissions
So for the time being we do not have to bother much on the funding of the higher education for these children!!
Initially Geeta had secured an admission at Lords Universal College at Malad , which is a private college and the annual fees was Rs 26000 for computer science.
But one silver lining was that the fees will be refunded back after a deduction of Rs 50 if the student wants to take an admission in some other college. But this has to be done before the Lords college starts with their lectures. Geeta had to take the admission in this college else she would have been left with no other choice and lose one year. This seat was alloted to Geeta through the online system. Hence I had paid the fees on her behalf .
But later on I went to this IIT-Pace academy and spoke to the co-ordinator and the Managing director about Geeta's case. Initially , they denied saying that her percentage was very low. But I insisted and also spoke about the work that we as an NGO are doing.
The MD immediately agreed and asked Geeta to join college from 7th Aug onwards.
and now she is regularly attending the classes... and most importantly she is very happy with the studious environment around.
and Rs 26000 paid has been refunded back from the Lords college as Geeta has cancelled her admission there , so that solves all the problems of funding or looking for sponsorers.
PS: You can find the history of this great effort by our volunteers in this link
Am writing this mail based on updates given by Padmaja. Thanks to her we all now have detailed info on the situation in the school.
She had visited the school in Wada along with Vijay on Friday. There were two schools in that area - one, a regular school with even junior college attached (Population of about 500), and the other, a residential school for adivasi children (Strength of around 300). We are focusing only on the normal school right now.
The school has a well (The motor and the pipes are all defunct, the tank is in a bad state as well due to neglect). The water sample was turbid and has a lot of particles (as seen by Padmaja) and a report of the scientific analysis of the sample (Done by Vijay's friends) stated that even a regular UV filtration method would not help, as the density of germs and bacteria in the water was too high. An R.O, on the other hand, would help.
Currently, the kids draw water from the well, and use a simple candle type filter for filtration.
Now, coming to the the important aspects:
Cost of an RO filter: A device that can give water at the rate of 15 liters an hour costs around Rs. 25,000.
Maintenance: The company would maintain the equipment for a year after which the school will have to maintain it
Regularity of electricity: The school has uninterrupted power for 6 days a week, and virtually no power on Fridays
Security of the device: A place has been earmarked for the device and it will be placed under grilled gates and a lock would also be provided to make sure no damage happens. The school, though they accept neglect of the water tank et al, do seem to recognise the importance of cleaner drinking water facilities
Motor: The repair of the motor will be taken care of by the school, they will either repair it or replace with a new one.
Assurance: The school is ready to give us assurance in writing that they will maintain and take care of the device properly
Now from our side, we need to decide on few aspects:
Type of Filter: This article shows that the BARC filter is better than a UV filter and requires very little maintenance or initial costs. Padmaja will follow up on the distributors of this kind of filter and figure out the viability of having this installed in the school.
Follow ups: We have to do follow ups with the school from time (at least once a month), to make sure that the device is being used and maintained well.
Future plans: There is another group that wants to set up a library and together, we can try and have that kind of setup in this school itself, and slowly try and improve standards of education here. The only drawback is the distance (Is one hour from Thane), but if we need to spread our work to villages, this is a good place to start.
Friends, 25K is a big amount and we should think of all possibilities before deciding on this...Since the time is less (We have to decide this week), I urge all of you to put in efforts and try to find alternate filtration methods or any company that might provide discounts on RO plants.
A very good new to start the day with.....Our student Ponni has scored 80% in her sixth semester, 2nd topper in the class. Dream India wishes her all the best. We are proud to be associated with her.
Our friend Viraj from Mumbai had obtained a used laptop for Ponni, from his office. Manikandan handed over the laptop to her recently, and the joy on her face is evident in the photos attached. She has been working really hard these last three years and we are sure that she would put the laptop to good use as well.
A piece of good news. Pooja’s admission for the XIth is done – SNDT College – MCVC in Electronics Technology. It’s a minimum competency vocational course, similar to regular XIth FYJC, but that’ll give her vocational training along with a chance to jump into the mainstream once she’s done. Earlier, the management was to put Pooja into XI Commerce at Mamasaheb Mohol College. Thanks to Sameer Sir and Rachna, this thing has become possible. Now she’ll have a fighting chance, should they tell her to leave AG once she’s eighteen years old.
College starts on the 17th of July, 2009 – at 08:15 A.M. So, please try to keep yourselves free on that day. Let’s cheer her on to her first day at college.
Travel – Pooja’ll be taking a bus to college, everyday. They’re looking at the pass thingy. I guess, she’ll get the concession form once college begins – so, that’s that.