Feb 1, 2011

Shloka Missionaries

Five days back, on my way back after the open-mic night at Bandra, I met Professor Sandeep Desai on the train. He is a chief architect of Shloka Missionaries, a charitable trust for educating poor children from the interiors of Maharashtra. He walked into the first-class compartment and had started a speech on “Vidya Daan,” the latest project of Shloka Missionaries, through which he collects money from willing commuters on the train and distributes it.

At first, I thought it was just another guy trying to sell a product and didn’t take my eyes of the book that I was reading. But he sounded earnest and sincere and soon he had the attention of all the passengers in the compartment. He first did a speech in fluent English and went on to display laminated copies of various articles that have come up in newspapers and magazines about the charitable trust. I was moved by the man’s commitment and devotion to charity. He then went on to give a repetition of the speech in Hindi.

At the end of his speech, I couldn’t help but donate the last 100 Rs. note that I had with me to his charity. I got his “card” — well, it’s not much of a card because he can’t afford high-quality card paper for distributing the details. So, it was just a cut-out of a printout — and went through it. Two days before, I had sent him an SMS indicating my desire to help in anyway as a musician. I haven’t gotten a response to that yet. Today, at work I was able to go through the website and I was moved again. Hence, I decided to blog about it.

I urge everyone to give in a couple of minutes of their time and go through the website. If you are as moved as me, please get in touch with Sholka/Prof. Desai and contribute whatever you can. You never know, you might run into him in the train some day!


1 comment:

GadgetJunction said...

Tablet Education.
India is a country that has most population between the age group of 4 & 35.
India also is country which has more illiterate population than any other country.
The reason of illiteracy is as under:
Not enough schools.
In government schools teachers are absconding.
Poor families require children work rather than go to school.
Some religions suppress girl’s freedom and do not let girls venture out of the house.
Illiterate parents don’t understand the importance of education.
Government’s apathy towards education.
All the above problems can be fixed with the help of Tab-Ed.
Which means taking live videos of teachers teaching in the class rooms and save the film of one full academic year in the micro sd card and load the same in the tablet computers and distribute them free to the adults and children who are genuinely interested in being literate.
Ministry of education has come across a vendor who can supply a tablet computer for $3 i.e.Rs. 1500/=.
This will have under mentioned multiple benefits:
No need to construct schools.
No need to travel to distant schools.
No government intervention.
The students can appear for the exams in the schools as external students for a nominal fee.
Every girl child will also get education at home.
Even working children can study whenever they find time.
Problem of bad quality teachers and absconding teachers can be solved.
The cost of tablet computer, micro sd card live video will not exceed rs. 5ooo/= per student per anum.
Whole country can be literate within next 1o years.
The live videos can be dubbed in any language.
Education is Power.
Instead of brick & mortar school virtual school is less expensive & can be improvised in any which way we want.
Can we join hands???????
Parag Paleja.
B/01; Highland glory;
Charkopp Village;
Kandivali West;
Mumbai- 400 067.

Cell: 9167078885.