Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Natasha Almeida

MUMBAI, NOVEMBER 24, 2009: November 15, 2009 proved to be a day of empowerment for those students from Dharavi who had enrolled themselves for the tailoring, computer literacy and English speaking courses conducted by Don Bosco Development Society in collaboration with Ekvira Mitra Mandal as they received their certificates with much pride on completion of the three month long endeavor.

220 students received certificates from Mr. Mahadeo Shinde President of Ekvira Mitra Mandal and Mr. Baban Sonawane, Secretary of Ekvira Mitra Mandal. Also present for the event was Ms. Surekha Pednekar from Don Bosco Development Society. The programme began by invoking Gods presence and presenting floral tributes to the guests and teachers.

The highlight of the programme was two students who were housewives from the slums of Dharavi delivered a thank you speech in English expressing their gratitude for the skills learnt at the course. Proposing the vote of thanks Ms. Surekha mentioned that the success of the course was only possible because of the co operation and participation of the students.

At the same time 21 boys between 15- 19 years are being trained to repair mobile phones at the Jeri Meri centre, Kurla in collaboration with Janshikshan Sanstha. This training will last for a period of 50 days empowering them to accomplish added skills and have an edge in society.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Ranald Lopes sdb
For the people of Baroj and the staff of Lok Seva Kendra (LSK) Chhota Udepur, November 6, 2009 was an exciting and memorable day, with the visit of special guests.
Mr. Hans-Jürgen Dörrich, Director of Jugend Dritte Welt, Germany; Mr. Reinhard Heiserer, Director of Jugend Eine Welt, Austria; and Mr. Michael Mager and Mr. Jörg Einsiedel from the Grohe Company, Germany, visited LSK to understand the progress of the projects underway there. After a warm welcome by the staff of LSK, the guests made a few quick stops at the bakery, technical centre and other programmes running in the campus. The highlight of the day, however, was the visit to the village of Baroj, where LSK is implementing a watershed project supported by Jugend Dritte Welt.
At Baroj, the guests were greeted enthusiastically by the villagers, who had prepared a grand programme in their honour. After the programme, they visited the various sites in the village where watershed work is underway, and interacted with the people to understand the impact of the watershed on their lives. The LSK staff explained the methods used to execute the project, and took note of suggestions made by the visiting team.
Through their visit, the team was able to see the difference that their support has made to the lives of the people. After spending several hours in the village, the guests left with a sense of satisfaction and the intention of returning as soon as they can!


Ranald Lopes sdb
With the release of the Gujarat Government’s order calling for social audits of the NREGA across the state, Lok Seva Kendra (LSK) Chhota Udepur began facilitating the process by organising a training programme on 5th November for members of the Village Vigilance and Monitoring Committees (VVMC) from villages in Chhota Udepur Taluka.
The session was conducted by the staff of LSK, who had themselves attended a similar programme as members of the Taluka Resource Group. More than 120 committee members from 19 Panchayats, as well as the TDO and other local officials, attended the session. The objective of the programme was to enable the committee members to understand the concept of a social audit and prepare them to conduct the audits in their own villages.
Since then, LSK has also been involved in facilitating the actual audit process in 22 Panchayats in the taluka. This experience has revealed that much more preparation is necessary to strengthen the committees, improve the audit process and ensure transparency in the implementation of the NREGA. At present, LSK is involved in ensuring that true and verifiable audit reports are presented during the ongoing Gram Sabhas in Chhota Udepur Taluka.

Monday, November 9, 2009


NARUKOT, NOVEMBER 9, 2009: “It was one of the rare and the best experiences of village exposure program I have ever seen during my profession.” Dr. N.B. Chauhan expressed his gratitude to Narukot Education Society.

“It was well organized and timely managed program that provided us an opportunity to learn about socio-cultural and agricultural conditions of tribal.” one of the students named Nirav stated in his thanksgiving speech.

The students and the faculty members of B.A. College of Agriculture, Anand Agricultural University, Anand had an enriching experience at Narukot Education Society, Narukot. Rev. Frs. Stanny, Brain and the staff of Development Society left no space for them to complain. They in fact, remained on their toes to make sure that the students and the faculty members would have a comfortable stay in order to fulfill their desired educational objectives while enjoying marvels of nature in and around the campus.

It was under Rural Agricultural Work Experience of the college, a total of 68 students and 17 faculty members stayed at Narukot from September 22 to October 11, 2009. During this course of time, they visited at least thirty villages to have an interaction with the farmers to learn about land holdings, irrigation, practices of crop production, animal husbandry and horticulture. Apart from that, they were also interested in learning about socio cultural life of the villagers.

In addition to that Fr. Stanny keenly shared his experiences of being in the Society and in this area working for socio economic and cultural development of the tribal. They were blissful to know about mission and vision of the Society. The boarders too were lucky to receive wisdom and knowledge from some of the learned and experienced professors who were obliged to talk to them about techniques of crop production, weather forecasting, remote sensing etc.

Friday, November 6, 2009


Gregory Almeida sdb
November 3, 2009 was a unique day for Don Bosco Kawant as it celebrated the Yuva Day for the youth of Kawant taluka. The crowd that was supposed to be expected was just 100, but then the numbers went on to cross 180. It was an amazing sight to see youngsters in the Hall, waiting anxiously to begin this day of animation. This Yuva day was an event organized by the Youth Coordinator, Br. Ramesh Durairaj . The Youth day began with a prayer service well animated by the boarders. The remaining part of the day was well organized by the staff of the DISHA DON BOSCO development office, Kawant.

The day marked with the introductory talk by Fr. Gregory Almeida, highlighting the role and importance of Youth in today’s world. He gave an example of the Model village in Maharashtra, Hirve Bazaar, where the newly elected Sarpanch, Mr. Popatrao began the village work with the help of the village youth to bring transformation in the village and today the same village is been projected by the Centre as the Model village for all other state. It has received numerous awards in the field of development due to the help of these youths. A time has come to bring the same transformation in the villages of Kawant.

The remaining part of the day went on smoothly with the development staff, taking different sessions on NREGs, Gram Sabha, Panchayati Raj and Social Audit. It was also an enriching experience for the staff to know that there are youngsters in the villages willing to learn and fight for a common cause.

A time has come to animate these youngsters on a daily basis who will bring a change in the villages of Kawant. Special thanks to Br. Ramesh for his vision and insight in arranging this programme for the youth. Also to the DISHA development staff for planning, arranging and taking the different sessions on Gram Sabha, NREGs, Self Help Group, Social Audit and Govt. Schemes. All in all it was a great day for Don Bosco, Kawant to begin work for these needy youth.