Sunday, 31 May 2015

RCBW's Weekly Bulletin Wins 2nd Prize !!!

RCBW Seeks CSR Partnerships with Corporates

Rotary Club of Bombay West, one of the premier rotary clubs of India which recently celebrated its 61st anniversary, has taken a first step towards inviting corporates to partner with them to execute community service projects under the newly introduced CSR initiatives by the Government of India.

As we are aware, the Indian Companies Act, 2013 has made it mandatory for companies having a net worth of rupees Indian Rs.500 crore or more or a turnover of Indian Rs.1000 crore or more or a net profit of Indian Rs.5 crore or more should mandatorily spend at least 2% of last 3 years’ average net profits on CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) activities as specified in Schedule VII of the said Act. The rules made thereunder came into effect from 1 April 2014. CSR refers to the way that businesses are managed to bring about an overall positive impact on the communities, cultures, societies and environments in which they operate.

At an interactive session organized by RCBW on May 28, 2015 at Rotary Service Centre, Juhu, Mumbai where invitees from several corporates were present, CA Sandeep Bhalla representing KPMG gave an overview of the CSR obligations and guided the audience on how to implement and be compliant with the CSR provisions of the Act.  Queries raised by the representatives of the Corporates were answered to their satisfaction.

Incoming President Shirish Rege of RCBW made a slick presentation on the work done in the area of community service, its flagship projects as well as projects under implementation / scanner.  He also explained to the audience on the benefits of partnership with rotary clubs in general and Rotary Club of Bombay West in particular.  To view the PPT, please click here.

Several clarifications were sought and queries raised by the invitees which were responded in detail by President of the Club, Mohan Joshi and the Incoming President Shirish Rege.

Harminder Patheja, Club’s President Nominee for rotary year 2017-18 thanked the invitees who represented several well-known corporate houses including Aditya Birla Financial Services, Reliance Foundation, Johnson & Johnson, Roche, Smile Foundation, KPMG, Galderma India, Saakav and S.P.Jain Institute of Management.  He specially thanked Vivek Padgaonkar, Hon.Rotarian of RCBW and Director of Organization of Pharmaceutical Producers of India (OPPI) for having supported this initiative of the Club.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Content Oriented Films Inspire Masses And Preserve Artistic Heritage

Content oriented cinema carry a social message thru’ medium of entertainment and challenge our intellect while at the same time broadening our perspective of the society in which we all exist.  Speaking at the meeting of Rotary Club of Bombay West  on Wednesday, May 13, 2015, Shri Vivek Kajaria, well-known film producer said content oriented cinema inspire the masses, motivate them towards inner reflection and preserve artistic heritage.  These films help independent cinema to stand out at International Film Festivals around the globe.

Shri Vivek Kajaria, is a creative film producer and is one of the top five Independent Film Producers   changing the face of Indian  cinema  at a global level.  He has to credit some path breaking films like Fandry, Shaala and Anumati  which have won several national and international awards and accolades at various Film Festivals.  Introducing Shri Kajaria, Past President of the Club Shri Rajendra Ruia said that very few producers in India are dedicated towards making of content oriented cinema.  An MBA and Computer Science from Warwick University, UK, Shri Kajaria has set up his own advertising and media outfit in the name of HolyBasil which is now associated with Lowe Lintas, Ulka, Leo Brunette, Standard Chartered, Surf Excel, HUL, etc.

Art films or Off-Beat films were a rage prior to the 90s when rising costs discouraged production of such films.  However, in recent times, the new-age films with distinct messages for the audience have once again become popular and most of them are also making commercial sense due to larger public acceptance.  Films like Lunch-Box, Fandry and many more have been commercial success thus encouraging even the front-line actors and producers to experiment with content oriented cinema.  Films like PIKU, Ship of Thesus, NH10 or Bombay Velvet are some of the recent examples.

According to Shri Kajaria, content oriented cinemas have great education value and are thought-provoking.  These films seek to bring about change and promote welfare of the society.  He urged the audience to see these films in theatres and encourage the growing talent while bringing about a change in the society.

-Report by Rtn.Aslam Merchant

Friday, 8 May 2015

RCBW's Bhavishya Yaan.. A Centre of Excellence

Our Club is associated with the Bhavishya Yaan Centre at Marathi Municipal School, Dixit Road, Vile Parle East, Mumbai since its inception over 3 years ago. In the current rotary year, our Club has commenced a similar initiative at Sane Guruji Marathi Vidyalaya at Santacruz West, Mumbai.  Past President Rtn.Sukh Dev Puri and Past President of Inner Wheel Club of Bombay West R/Ann Urmil Puri have been the driving force behind success of this project, spending time and money to ensure high quality results which some of us could witness at the grand finale of the Summer Camp organized by the students recently.

The students are mostly from an underprivileged background and are perhaps the first generation in their respective families to have reached the secondary level in school education.  These students could effortlessly perform on stage, a variety theme-based entertainment-cum-educative programme on “Goa”.  Their rendition of talks, poems and songs in English language with clear diction and pronunciations was heartening. It was quite delighting to witness the event and at some level, feel proud to be a rotarian from RCBW which had made this transformation possible in them. 

Much of the credit to this success goes to the Centre Manager, Ms.Deepa Shetiya – a young, energetic, dynamic, enthusiastic teacher entrusted with the responsibility to conduct the sessions and manage day-to-day affairs for the project on behalf of our Partners, Vidya (an NGO engaged among other things in educating the underprivileged children).

Speaking to her on the sidelines of the Summer Camp Finale, one could not avoid her contagious smile nor could one be unaffected by the tremendous passion she has towards this project.  In one breadth she talked about how intelligent the children were in picking up newer skills and in the next she would be praising their parents for their support.  Pride was seen all over her face when she talked about the toppers in the last Board Exams were all from the first batch of Bhavishya Yaan project.  She introduced us to some of the potential toppers at the next Board Exams for which, through her efforts and some assistance from our Club, would be put through intensive coaching.
Ms.Shetiya and her band of colleagues from Vidya had organized a trip to Kidzania for students of Bhavishya Yaan, the cost of which was sponsored by RCBW.  She narrated the enjoyable and learning experience of the children which they will remember for a long time to come.  The students could first-hand experience different skill-based careers and try their hands at them for earning tokens which they could later splurge on games and delicacies of their choice.

Earlier, with the objective of brushing up their life skills and English skills, giving them vocational guidance, encouraging them to go for further education and preparing them for adolescence age by teaching them sex education and stress management, a Finishing School Session was organized for the students spread over two days at Banganga and Chembur Bhavishya Yaan Centres.  The methodology used was Interactive Discussions, Role Play and Group Activities.  Among the topics covered were fear, nervousness, positive thinking, focus, power of thoughts, verbal communication, non-verbal communication, listening, power of appreciation and perception. The learning was experiential with games, skits, role plays and other facilitative techniques to bring the best out of the students.  Children were made to present in front of camera twice and showed increase in confidence level.  Experts from the respective fields made presentations on de-addiction, sexuality, etc.  At the end of the Finishing School Session, students were rewarded with a visit to Imagica.

Truly, Bhavishya Yaan is turning out to be a Centre of Excellence, transforming students from less privileged backgrounds and making them at par with students of accredited private schools.  To quote an employer-housewife of a maid whose daughter is a Bhavishya Yaan student…. ‘how come your daughter speaks as good an English as my daughter who goes to a convent school’.  Ofcourse, the employer-housewife has yet to see so many other talents of these children which they learn and develop as part of Bhavishya Yaan.

Would you like to contribute to this noble project?  Your time, your skills or your money can give a further impetus and can help us in opening additional Centres of Excellence !!

-          Rtn.Aslam Merchant with inputs from Ms.Deepa Shetiya, Centre Manager, Bhavishya Yaan

Friday, 1 May 2015

RCBW Launches "Nepal Relief Fund"

On its 61st Charter Nite, Rotary Club of Bombay West announced its intention to reach out to the victims of Nepal Earthquake by raising donations for "Nepal Relief Fund" under the auspices of its partner organization, ROTARY SERVICE PUBLIC CHARITABLE TRUST.

Within hours of the announcement, RCBW Members committed donations of over Rs.15 lacs for the Fund.  An Appeal has also been made by the Club to members of the public to donate generously for this noble cause and help our neighbours 'rise from the rubble' to its former glory.

RCBW Honours Dr.Bharat Mahale

Rotary Club of Bombay West honoured Dr.Bharat Mahale with Rotary Vocational Excellence Award for his exemplary work on Maternal Mortality Reduction Project at Village Jawahar, Dist.Palghar in State of Maharashtra.

RCBW Celebrates its 61st Anniversary

Rotary Club of Bombay West celebrated its 61st Charter Nite on Wednesday, 29th April, 2015 at "The Club", D.N.Nagar, Andheri West, Mumbai.

The highlight of the evening was the dance performance "In Search of Krishna" by former member of our Club, Ms.Namita Bodaji.  A disciple of Guru G.Karunambal Pillai (who incidentally passed away on the same day at the ripe age of 92), Namita gave a heart-touching performance in fond memory of her Gurumaa, which left the audience spell-bound.  

On this occasion, the Club admitted two new members viz. Ms.Zeenat Fazulbhoy and Mr.Adish Rathod who were given a warm welcome by members present. The Club also presented Vocational Excellence Award to Dr.Bharat Mahale, MD, Patangshah Cottage Hospital, Jawahar, Dist.Palghar.

The event was well attended by members and their spouses, dignitaries from the District 3140 and especially invited guests.