Thursday, January 10, 2013


BIS Mumbai                                  



BIS correspondent


KAPADVANJ-AHMEDABAD, JANUARY 10, 2013: Don Bosco Dristi, Kapadvanj was instrumental in planning and executing an NSS camp for five days in the village of Gadiyara. A lot of work went into the planning of this camp. Fr. Mayank had first to concientise the NSS students of the Parekh Brother’s College and the people of Gadiyara village.


The camp was held from December 19 to December24, 2012. Sixteen NSS cadets of Parekh Brothers’ Science College and Eight Youth from Gadiyara village participated in the camp. They were all accommodated in the Gadiyara Primary School building. Boarding and lodging for all these days were looked after by the Self Help Groups of Gadiyara village.


In collaborating with Parekh Brothers’ Science College, DRISTI had a twofold objective in mind. The first objective was to create and enhance the level of social consciousness among the cadets. The second was to expose the villagers to the need for higher education through contact with the Science college students. Besides this we were also interested in regularly interacting with the NSS students.


At the opening session on December 19, 2012, Mr Jagjit Chauhan, the camp chief and Fr. Mayank Parmar the director of Dristi, welcomed the cadets and conducted an introductory session in which camp discipline was explained.


We first made the cadets aware of their heritage and the state of the heritage sites in Kapadvanj. The students were fired up by the talks and then proceeded to the Kundvav (Step Well) of Kapadvanj. They enthusiastically went about cleaning it under the supervision of Mr. Bhatt Assistant camp chief, Mr. Chauhan and Fr.Mayank. The organizers even got the municipality to join in the cleaning.


After working for two hours at the Kundvav, they were taken to Gadiyara by tractor. It was amazing to see all the village leaders, and villagers were present to welcome the cadets. The Gadiyara primary school children gave them warm welcome with special programme and pyramid salute.


Fr. Mayank in his speech explained to the gathering what the whole NSS Camp was all about and thanked them at the start for allowing these youth to come to their village and have this experience. After the programme, the cadets were divided in five teams and a tour of the whole village was organized.


The NSS students were made aware of the village set up and how it has been developed through the years.  Before retiring to bed, Fr. Mayank conducted the evaluation of the day and the next day’s programme was explained.


Themes were chosen for each day and depending on the theme morning Jagruti Rallies were held and the slogans were prominently displayed where people could read them.


The following were the themes chosen:

On the first day we dealt with the theme of Panchayati Raj System namely good governance at local level.


On the second day we concentrated on the theme of Health and an Ayurvedic health camp was held in collaboration with the government Ayurvedic hospital, in which around one hundred twenty people participated. In the evening of the same day there was special programme held for the people, to create awareness of the ill effects of tobacco and liquor.


On the third day we concentrated on the evils of child marriage.


On the fourth day, we dealt with the issue of single women and at the same time tried to give the students an experience of life in the village.

Each day began with a Jagruti Rally at seven in the morning the students shouted slogans conscientising people about the day’s theme. These slogans were also written on the walls in public places where people would see them. This was followed by a special input session for the cadets in the morning by experts specially chosen for their contribution in the respective fields.


This was followed by Jan sampark i.e. meeting people informally to discuss the theme of the day.  After the lunch break, the literacy classes were held according to  falya/area. On an average around seventy women participated in literacy classes for five days. The students, found it fulfilling since the women came forward in large numbers to participate in the literacy classes.


Then the falya/area meeting was held. The topic of the day was discussed with people of the area.  The people were invited to join in general meeting to be held at night for all. This too was a very interesting session conducted by students themselves. The village meeting was held every night, and to initiate the discussion, a documentary film was screened on the topic of the day. The students also engaged themselves in helping the people in cleaning the village. They were allotted areas to clean which they did very willingly.

Some time was given to the cadets for their own recreation and games.  This was also very enthusiastically organized by students. On the last day the students put up a special programme for the villagers.


On that day, with the help of people, leaders, well wishers, Self Help Groups, Gadiyara Dairy, Panchayat members, Primary School staff, Parekh Brothers’ Science college and Don Bosco, collected the amount Rupees forty one thousand only to be put in the fix deposit as a scholarship fund. The interest of the same will be used as a scholarship for the two girls of the village who stand first in the SSC and HSC exams respectively. Thus one of the dreams of DRISTI Don Bosco was fulfilled by the end of the camp. The staff of the college was really surprised to see the cooperation of the villagers.


The camp ended on the following day with the valedictory function to which the college staff,  School staff, village leaders, SMC committee and SHGs leaders were specially invited. They all joined in the farewell agape prepared by the SHGs members. Thanks to DRISTI team for their interventions and contribution for the camp.  Kudos to Don Bosco Kapadvanj who helped the students of Parekh Brothers’  Science College in organizing this event. It was a wonderful experience both for the cadets as well as for the villagers.




Don Bosco Provincial House,
Matunga, Mumbai - 400 019. INDIA


News Blog:




No comments: