Sewa Sandesh August 2017
Raksha Bandhan with our Rakshaks
Sewa International’s Uttarakhand chapter celebrated Rakshabandhan by tying Rakhi on the hands of security personnel from paramilitary forces from Barahot to Tapovan. The women from various SHGs and Sewa Mahila Jyoti program went to the border posts and tied rakhis to the rakshaks (brave soldiers), who risk their lives for our safety and security. The women prayed for their well-being, long life and victory. It was a touching sight to see these brave men moved when tilak was applied on their forehead and the sacred thread tied. Many of these men were away from their families for long. The celebration brought back memories of home and loved ones.
Independence Day Celebration @ Uttarakhand
Sewa International celebrated Independence Day with patriotic fervour. At various project sites, school and college students, trainees, celebrated the day by hoisting the Tricolour and singing the National Anthem. All the PMKK centres in Uttarakhand joined the celebrations with great enthusiasm and gaiety. Sweets were distributed at the end of the event. Everyone took the pledge of Swachchta (cleanliness) and promised to work towards making the country great again.
Hurricane Harvey is an active tropical cyclone that is causing unprecedented and catastrophic flooding in south-eastern Texas. It is the first major hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Wilma in 2005. What set Harvey apart was its rain. Once the storm made landfall, it essentially stalled, turning roads in Houston and elsewhere into raging rivers. The hurricane started as Category 1 on 23 August but within 48 hours it rapidly ballooned into Category 4, bringing unprecedented rains. Harvey has caused at least 33 confirmed deaths; 1 in Guyana, and 32 in the United States. Catastrophic inland flooding is ongoing in the Greater Houston area.
It has inundated parts of the Houston area with more than 40 inches of rain. In some places, totals have surpassed 50 inches, setting a new record. Harvey is hitting Louisiana, as this goes to print and is likely to affect hundreds of miles of coastline. It has been called “one of the largest disasters America has ever faced.” The economic losses are estimated to range anywhere from $10 billion to $50 billion.
Sewa USA and its volunteers are working round the clock for the relief and rescue of people affected in Texas. Sewa USA has set up Food Kitchens and they are handing out 2500 meals every day to the affected people. Sewa USA volunteers are working in tandem with other agencies, providing relief and rescue. At least 200 Indian students were stranded at the University of Houston due to “catastrophic” flooding. They were evacuated to safer places and provided food and shelter with the help of Sewa USA volunteers. Sewa is working towards its goal ‘to be first responders at any disaster’, and with the help of an impressive battalion of dedicated volunteers, are providing yeomen’s service and acting as an inspiration.
North India Floods
All the 6 major states of Northern India are reeling under floods, along with the neighbour country, Nepal. The floods have claimed more than 700 lives and affected more than 21 million people. The worst hit state is Bihar, claiming 514 lives so far and the death toll is set to rise, as there has been no respite from the rains till this newsletter went for print. Sewa International volunteers have been working relentlessly for the relief and rescue of those trapped in the flooded areas. Sewa International has released donation appeals for the same, on various platforms including social media.
Swasthya Sahayogi Sewa
World Organ donation Day was organized on 13th August by Sewa International at Public Awareness Program Sewa International Office, Tapovan Mandal, district Chamoli. While highlighting the process and importance of Anganwadi through the awareness program, it was told that there is still lack of awareness about organ donation in India. Apart from providing a new lease of life, it could help in research related to human life, medical education and genetic development. There are also various myths and suspicion related to organ donation but there is a need to overcome them, for which this priceless initiative can be stepped up with the help of government / non-governmental organizations at various levels. All misconceptions regarding organ donation were expelled and the process explained in detail. Any medical college, University or any recognized registration platform can be approached for organ donation in person or online. The desired information should then be filled in the prescribed application form. This can be done separately for donating a particular organ or donating the full body. After registration, the registration card is received by the donor like a donation card. To promote this noble cause, many celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Salman Khan, Vivek Oberoi, etc., have pledged to donate their organs. Sewa International too has aligned itself with the cause. It is leaving no stone unturned to inspire people to come out of age-old dogmas and usher the new dawn of science; helping themselves and human kind, through organ donation.
Bamboo TOT Program
On 21 Aug 2017, Sewa Uttarakhand undertook a 20-days Training of the Trainers (TOT) program titled ‘Ringal Training Program’ in Subhayi village of Tapovan Mandal. This 20-day program was designed to teach the local women to make beautiful artefacts out of Bamboo. The products made by these women would then be sold on different platforms viz. market fairs, exhibitions, artisan haat, as well as online. A total of 23 women attended this ToT. Mr. Prem Lal was the Master Trainer. The initiative was a part of Sewa International’s effort towards women empowerment. Sewa International is running skill development programs in various parts of the country, with a special focus on women, in order to make them economically independent, which is an important indicator for empowerment. Sewa International is proceeding further towards the goal of self -sustainability, supporting and realizing the vision of “Kaushal Bharat- Kushal Bharat.” The journey continues with many hues, one among them is this ‘Ringal Training Program’.
SIB Represented at Various Forums
Facebook’s NGO Day
On 1st August 2017, Facebook organised a Workshop to apprise organizations, active in the social sector, of the different tools that they can use to reach out to a larger audience and create an impact. Apart from sharing the usability and utility of each and every feature provided by Facebook, inspiring stories were shared by founding members of organizations like Nipman Foundation and Feeding India. SIB was represented by Mily Gildiyal, in-charge of HR & Social Media and Chitrakshee, an intern working on e-marketing, at the Workshop.
ASSOCHAM’s Skills Seminar cum Award Ceremony
On 9th August, Assocham organized a Seminar cum Award Ceremony to felicitate the good work done by various agencies involved in Skill Development initiatives. Mr. Rajiv Pratap Rudy Ji ( Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship) was the Chief Guest at the event. He felicitated the achievers and asked them to continue their good work with greater momentum and reach. He along with other eminent personalities shared their experiences and thoughts on the importance and innovative methods of skill development.
Research and Information Centre for Developing Countries, in collaboration with the Ministry of External Affairs organised a Conference on South-South and Triangular Cooperation on 24-25 August 2017 at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi. Mr. Shyam Parande. Managing Trustee of SIB, was invited to speak in the session tiled ‘Future Research Agenda and Policy Imperatives’. He shared Sewa International’s experience and Modus Operandi to arrive at plausible policy initiatives that will benefit the society at large, especially the last man in need.