Monday, 29 August 2016

Cash Awards for SSC / Graduation Toppers from Mumbai Schools & Colleges

Rotary Club of Bombay West awarded cash prizes of Rs.10,000/-, Rs.5,000/- and Rs.3,000/- to top ranking students at SSC and Graduation levels from Schools and Colleges, mainly in western suburbs at ceremony held at Smt.Chandaben Mohanbhai Patel Homeopathic Medical College Auditorium, Mumbai at the hands of Chief Guest Dr.Snehalata Deshmukh, Former Vice Chancellor of University of Mumbai and a well-know Pediatric Surgeon.

This was the 3rd consecutive year when the Club has given away these awards to the students along with a Merit Certificate.  These awards were instituted by the Club from the donation of Rs.100 lakhs given by Dr.Mohanbhai Patel's family Trust, the interest from its corpus is utilized to present the cash awards year after year.

Over 170 students received these Awards in presence of Dr.Mohanbhai Patel, an industrialist of repute and an Ex-Sheriff of Mumbai, Rtn.Aslam Merchant, President of Rotary Club of Bombay West, other officials, members of the Club, Rotaractors from Rotaract Club of Sathaye College, students, parents, teachers and invited guests.

In his inspirational talk Dr.Mohanbhai Patel said what “Excellence” meant to him.  He quoted a few examples about the excellent work done by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to unite India after achieving freedom. He spoke about Mahatma Gandhi’s communication skills. Mahatma Gandhi could effectively communicate with the entire country without any phone or gadgets. Smt.Snehalata Deshmukh in her address urged the students to dream big and work hard towards achieving their goals. President Aslam Merchant too advised the students to put in their very best efforts and pursue higher education to be successful. These were the highlights of the evening which the students and parents will cherish for life.Before the awardees left the venue, they were handed over framed picture of them receiving the awards which was a delightful surprise element planned and executed meticulously by the Club.

- Report by Rtn.Shefali Shah, Jt.Secretary

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Rotary Bombay West Celebrates Independence Day

Rotary Club of Bombay West and Rotary's KDN Shruti School for the Hearing Impaired celebrated India's 70th Independence Day gaiety and fervor on 15th August, 2016 at the school premises located at JVPD, Mumbai.

National flag was hoisted by Chief Guest Major General Nitin Gadkari (Retd) from the Indian Army to the playing of the band by the students of the schools.  This was followed by a March Past and a cultural show and fusion dance by the students which was flawless and applauded by all.

Addressing the audience of students, parents, teachers and members and families of Rotarians, Major General Nitin Gadkari (Retd) Indian Army gave pertinent motivating messages -  to the parents he praised the efforts put in by them to educate their hearing impaired children and make real their dreams, to the teachers he complimented them for the tremendous work they have to do with the special children while imparting quality education to them and to the students he gave examples of great men like Thomas Alva Edison (the inventor of light bulb) and Karoly Takacs (the Hungary pistol shooter) who despite their disabilities achieved success in what they set out to do.

Earlier, Dr.Mohanbhai Patel, Past President of the Club and Ex-Sheriff of Mumbai, blessed the children and the teachers for the good work being done by the Shruti School.  He reminisced the days of freedom struggle and recalled the great sacrifices of our leaders to make India independent. He praised the armed forces for continuing to ensure our independence by guarding our borders as also working hard to fight terrorism within the country.

President Rtn.Aslam Merchant introduce the Chief Guest and the Guest of Honour to the audience.  He also announced that a set of 100 story books published by "Pratham" are being gifted to the Shruti School Library for the benefit of the students.

Over seventy members of the Club along with their families graced the ocassion and enjoyed the fellowship after the programme.

Rotary Awards to SSC Students of Palghar District

Supa Farm Rotary Excellence Awards

On Saturday, 13th August, 2016, the third annual Supa Farm Rotary Excellence Awards Ceremony was held at Gokhale Education Society’s Talasari Education Complex, Talasari, Palghar in Maharashtra.  Sir Dr.M.S.Gosavi, Secretary & Director General, Gokhale Education Society was the Chief Guest.  Also present at the function were Shri Arvind Patel, Ex-Dy.CEO, Palghar Taluka, Past President Dr.Mohanbhai Patel, Industrialist & Ex-Sheriff of Mumbai, his son Shri Kartik Patel, daughter Ms.Nisha Sagar and son-in-law Shri Anand Sagar.  Also present were several members from Rotary Club of Bombay West and Rotaract Club of Mithibai College.

Supa Farm Rotary Excellence Awards were instituted by our Rotary Club of Bombay West in 2014 with a donation of Rs.50 lacs received from Surajba Charitable Trust for students from tribal belts in Dahanu and Talasari Talukas, in Maharashtra.  Students securing 1st, 2nd and 3rd ranks in their respective schools / colleges at the SSC Board / University Exams are awarded cash prizes of Rs.5000, Rs.3000 and Rs.2000 respectively every year from the income earned on the corpus created from the donation along with a Merit Certificate from the Club.  This year, around 45 schools were selected and cash awards and certificates were given away to more than 146 students to motivate towards higher achievements.  Each student was also given a copy of Guide to Education Loans & Skill Loans from Banks in India which would enable them to dream big and make their dreams real.

Shri Aslam Merchant, President of the Rotary Club of Bombay West welcomed the students, parents and the principals / teachers of the institutions to the awards function.  In his address to the students, he urged students to  aim high in life, go for higher studies after XIIth Std, achieve success in life with hard work and make their parents, their village and their country proud. 

Addressing the gathering, Dr.Mohanbhai Patel talked what “Excellence” meant to him.  The phenomenal work done by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to unite India post-freedom from the Britishers was epitome of “Excellence” and so was the communication skills of Mahatma Gandhi who could effectively communicate with 40 crore Indians without the availability of present day technology-based tools.  Today, every child in India has equal opportunity to excel.   The intention of the Supa Farm Rotary Excellence Awards was to recognize the potential amongst the tribal children and encourage them to have high ambitions in life.  By bringing Rotary to the doorstep of these villages, his objective was to encourage interactions of rural students with urban professionals and contribute towards their  development.

Speaking to the students, Chief Guest Sir Dr.M.S.Gosavi urged the students to follow the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi.  He also urged the students to work on their communication skills as that along with good academics can guarantee success in life.

After distribution of the cash awards and certificates at the hands of the Chief Guest, the awardees were handed a framed photograph of their receiving the award before they left the venue with a broad smile on their faces.

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Hearing Impaired Children Caring for the Visually Impaired & Aged...

On Thursday, 4th August, 2016 I was invited to the installation ceremony of Interact Club of KDN Shruti School for the Hearing Impaired...  an experience I will remember for a long long time to come.

The Club President, Zia Kasmani, unveiled his plans for the Rotary Year 2016-17 which talked about visiting the homes for the blind and the homes of the elders in the vicinity - to entertain them with their song and dance performance, to spend some quality time with them and carry gifts for them.  What a wonderful thought...  these are the children who are themselves 'differently-abled', mostly from economically disadvantaged families, and they are thinking about the visually impaired and the elders in the community.  

If only everyone in the society is this caring.... the world will be an even better place to live.

About Interact Clubs...
Interact gives students ages 12-18 the chance to make a real difference while having fun. Every Interact club carries out two service projects a year: one that helps their school or community and one that promotes international understanding.

Clubs meet at least twice a month and are sponsored by their local Rotary club. When you sponsor an Interact club, you’re helping young people:
  • connect with community leaders
  • develop leadership skills
  • make international connections
Rotary makes this difference to the youth... Rotary serves humanity.

Monday, 1 August 2016

Car & Road Safety Workshop

Rotary Club of Bombay West in association with Consumer Guidance Society of India (CGSI) organized a Workshop on Car, Road and Consumer Safety on Sunday, 31st July, 2016 at Rotary Service Centre, Santacruz West.
Aslam Merchant

Rotary Clubs take up causes which affect the masses.  This year, Rotary District 3141 comprising over 80 clubs in Mumbai and extended suburbs on western side upto Dahanu, have taken up causes like organ donation awareness, diabetes awareness and check-up and road safety.

Gopal Rai Mandhania
In his welcome address, President of the Club, Aslam Merchant, quoted a report of NDTV published in May 2016 which said every day 400 people were killed in India in 2015 in road accidents.  We are quick to blame bad roads, drunken driving, lack of discipline or road signs, uncontrolled encroachments, etc.  But we never consider unsafe cars or improper maintenance of cars and tyres as the major reasons for mishaps. Keeping his factor in mind, Consumer Guidance Society of India conceived the idea of the Workshop for the benefit of public.  

Participants at Workshop
Among the speakers at the Workshop were Dr.Sitaram Dixit, Chairman CGSI, Dr.M.S.Kamath, Secretary, CGSI and senior officials from Goodyear Tyres and Audi India.

The Workshop was well attended by CGSI members, rotarians and members of the public despite inclement weather.  District Governor Gopal Rai Mandhania, Rotary Dist.3141 along with Assistant Governor R.R.Singh and Manish Gyani, Dist.Avenue Chair Service 16 Projects too graced the event.