Saturday, December 24, 2016

Sewa Sandesh

August - 2016
Due to heavy rains and consequent floods, health situation is worsening in UP, especially in Allahabad and Varanasi areas. Keeping this in mind, Sewa International organized a Free Health Camp at Bhiti village near Ram Nagar, Kashi on Aug 21 2016, with the help of specialist doctors from BHU in association with NMO. A total of 9 specialist doctors, including paediatrician, gynaecologist, skin specialist, checked up over 340 patientsand gave free medicines to them. Sewa International would like to graciously thank these doctors who gave their valuable time for the voluntary service. At the camp it was realized that the need for more of such camps is immense, but resources for arranging doctors, medicines, camp expenses etc, are limited. Sewa International would like to run more such camps and needs resources for that.
Weavers were excited to be part of the day-long,"Awareness Workshop on SilkMark and Handloom Mark" and to learn about various benefits associated with these brands.The camp was organized by Sewa International on 23 Aug 2016. Shri Ramesh Chandra, Senior Executive (SilkMark), and Shri Brijesh Kumar Shukla, QA Officer (Handloom Mark), graciously agreed to provide thier valuable guidance to weaver community. A total of 82 weavers participated in the camp and asked a lot of questions regarding benefits, processes associated with these brands as well as told the difficulties faced by them. Sewa International's Kashi project is already registered with SilkMark and plans to empower weavers by guiding them to produce quality garments.
Beautiful creations were produced as a result of the fusion of Kashi brocade and Kutchi bandhini design forms. Created as part of Sewa International Bharat's Kashi-to-Kutch weavers and artisans empowerment program, these products have received great response so far and we hope to get the support of our donors and well-wishers to ensure survival of these exquisite art-forms.
Experiencing the True Joy of Giving, Sewa International's valued supporter from the Caribbean, Mrs Indrani Rampersad collected funds from her friends/family for distributing School kits with Sweets to  200 school children at Ram Nagar in Kashi, UP on Aug 11 2016.
As part of Sewa International's "Read Kashi Read India" campaign, we are running 5 evening educational centres in villages of Varanasi with the help of Seva Kirana (Bangalore) for supplementary education to disadvantaged kids. About 200 children aged 6-14 years, come everyday to learn outside of the cramped govt schools, assisted by motivated youths who volunteer to teach them everyday.
At the end of event, it was difficult to find out who was more happy, Mrs. Indrani for Joy of Giving or the ever so excited kids on getting new pencil box and copies!
Being one of the tribal districts in Odisha, Kalahandi has been enlisted to be one of the most backward regions of the state. Keeping the deplorable condition of the district, Siksha Vikash Samiti initiated a proposal to run a residential school for the inhabitants of the region as they conformed the fact that the root cause of grief was the lack of education. As per the Plan, the school was established in the early 90's at Thuamul Rampur Block of Kalahandi. This is a tribal populated block inhabited by tribes mostly Kutia Kandha and Damba. The river Indravati starts flowing from Thuamul and most trusted and popularly worshipped goddess of Kalahandi District Maa Manikeswari first appeared on the same place. The residential school plays home to about 163 students and 17 members of staff.
It provides its wards with hostel accommodation and three square meals each day, but the scarcity of power and clean drinking water was a major hurdle for their education and livelihood. With no electricity, students depended on kerosene lamps which had negative impact on their health as well as study routine. The only source of water was from the adjacent river of Indravati that often tends to dry up. With the shortage of water, toilets, bathrooms and suitable sanitation arrangements were not completely installed.To address these obstacles of the school, Sewa International that finds credence in the value of a good education came forward to help the school. Under the Clean Tech Initiative, Sewa International promotes and implements clean tech energy solutions in remote and inaccessible areas of India where power through conventional modes has not yet reached. A survey was conducted by Crux Power Private Limited that resulted in the proposal for the 5kWp Solar Power Plant to operate all major loads including fans, CFL Lights and Computer, Television provision in the hostel and school.As per the proposal, the construction of power plant was completed by the end of April, 2016. The lighting and electrical power support for classrooms and hostel were provided through a 5kWp off- Grid rooftop solar power plant. Secondly, an RO based water Purification system of 1000 Liters Per Hour was set up to cater the needs of the students and also the resident villagers nearby. Along with it, an overhead tank was constructed to meet the sanitation need of the students. The 5kWP Solar Power plant is tentatively generating an average of 20 kWh electricity units per day.Sewa International believes this project would help developing an ecofriendly and disease free environment for the students and staff at the residential school in the Kalahandi district. Further it will be a model project for other residential schools in Odisha.
(Excerpted from "Organizer" July 31 2016 article by Swayam Prakash Baral)
While running the Knitting Centres in Uttarakhand, Sewa International found repairing of the hand-knitting machines (mostly from Ludhiana) to be quite a task due to lack of knowledge and training on their maintenance. This resulted in quite a few machines needing to be sent to Ludhiana or even decommissioned. To overcome these problems, Sewa International organized a training for better care, maintenance and repair of the hand-knitting/card machines in its centres. Mr. Alam Singh, who is an expert in this field and runs his ownknitting based business, provided the much needed training at Sewa International's Chandrapuri (Rudraprayag) Knitting Centre to the excited trainees; who were all very happy to know more about the working of their tools.
Sewa International as part of its Skill India initiative, organized a Bamboo Handicraft Training Program, at Naisingpara Refugee Camp,Tripura for Reang Tribes, in association with BTDS. It was a 10-days training program from 28 Jul- 6 Aug 2016, in which 2 professional handicraft makers from Haflong, Assam provided training to 11 youths, for making high-quality handicraft products from Bamboo.
Sewa International has been working for the development of the Reang (Bru) tribal community living in refugee camps in Tripura. It aims to empower them and provide them with useful life-skills for the livelihood generation.
Sewa International organized a 4 day training workshop from 7th Aug - 10th Aug, for our SHG members from 8 villages in Tapovan mandal of Chamoli district in Uttarakhand. This training saw active participation of 48 women SHG members who learnt about making processed foods out of the locally available fruits. The workshop involved training on procedures for preparing jams, jelly, squash, chutney, pickles from apples, apricots, pears, mango. Trainees were very happy to learn about the processes involved to ensure the quality and taste of the final processed product. There was special emphasis on cleanliness and quality control. After the training, the trainees are going to make processed food products and sell in the local market to start with and later expand to other areas. Sewa International believes that enabling farmers by providing livelihood training on locally sourced goods is the best way for economic prosperity and sustainability. It plans to organize such trainings on a regular basis in Rudraprayag and Chamoli districts for empowerment of our women.

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