Wednesday, 26 October 2016

E-Learning - Centres of Excellence

Education is the catalyst of change and Information Technology is the major driving force and change agent. Rural Indian population is not as fortunate as the urban population in terms of access to quality education system.  

With a view of bridge this divide, Rotary Club of Bombay West provided E-Learning Kits to fourteen (14) rural schools in Palghar District at a function organized by them in association with Rotary Club of Palghar at Zilla Parishad School, Vevoor, Palghar East.  Over 25 teachers and principals from the select schools attended the function along with Principal, Teachers and Students of Vevoor ZP School.  The E-Learning Kits (which includes SSC curriculum from Std.I to Std.X in interested audio-visual format) were handed over to the Schools by Rtn.Aslam Merchant, President, Rotary Club of Bombay West and Rtn.Bhagwan Patil, President, Rotary Club of Palghar in presence of Rotary Club members and other invited guests.

Earlier, the teachers from select schools underwent a training session on effective use of the E-Learning hardware and software.  Sr.Executives from M/s.Home Revise Education Private Limited conducted the technical session which was appreciated by everyone. 

Enhancing Learning Environment at Rural Primary Schools

 A few Kms drive from Virar on outskirts of Mumbai takes you to the tribal areas of Savare Group Grampanchayat…  where distinctly backward and economically challenged families make their ends meet with the meager available resources.

Children from these villages study at Zilla Parishad Primary Schools which typically have two classrooms for Std.I to IV with only two teachers and about 40 – 60 students.  The upkeep and maintenance leaves much to be desired.  A couple of years ago, with financial support from World Community Service Committee of Rotary International District 5550 from Canada through Rotary Club of St.Catharines and our own Foundation, our Club had upgraded the toilet facilities through repairs & refurbishing, providing water tanks, submersible water pumps and plumbing to ensure cleanliness and effective use of the facilities.  This was truly appreciated by the parents, teachers and the students of these villages.

On Monday, 24th October, 2016, the Club provided Pratham ‘Library in Classroom’ with 125 story books in Marathi and English and Water Filters for safe drinking water to 10 (ten) such Primary Schools in the area.  Also, 488 Students from 14 (fourteen) Primary Schools were provided with designer & durable School Bags, Pencil Pouches and Sketch Pens Set bringing instant smiles on their cute faces. Later next month, the Club plans to provide these children with footwear and woolens.  This project - Enhancing Learning Environment at Rural Primary Schools - has been made possible because of the generous contribution from World Community Service Committee through Rotary Club of St.Catharines as well as our own foundation and members who donated in cash or kind.

A small effort in the right direction by Rotary Club of Bombay West….  Every drop counts.  Every little effort that we make improves the learning environment, reduces drop-outs and motivates the teachers to perform better.

Art & Craft Teachers' Enrichment Workshop

Within the context of formal education the ‘Art & Craft’ supports personal, social, moral, spiritual, cultural and creative development, and enables participants to engage with and explore visual, tactile and other sensory experiences and how to recognise and communicate ideas and meanings. These opportunities enable them to work with traditional and new media, so that they develop confidence, competence, imagination and creativity.  This knowledge opens many career pathways and links to the outside world of creative, cultural, design and heritage industries.  Every manufactured product has a ‘innovatively designed’ , every packaging is uniquely ‘artistic’ – so what attracts buyers’ attention is the ‘design’.

On Saturday, 22nd October, 20-16, Rotary Club of Bombay West in association with Kokuyo Camlin Limited organized an “Art & Craft Teachers’ Enrichment Workshop” at Rotary Service Centre with the objective of enhancing the knowledge of the teachers from neighborhood schools in creative use of existing and new mediums of art material and dangers associated with use of non-standard materials which may contain toxic chemicals harmful to the children.

Mr.Rajkumar, Senior Marketing Executive from Kokuyo Camlin assisted by his team demonstrated unique techniques which were simple to understand and teach the students, thus helping them to be more creative in their work.  Forty-seven (47) Art & Craft Teachers from over 25 schools participated in the Workshop and benefited from it.  The positive feedback received at the end of the Workshop from the participants made our efforts worthwhile in arranging this unique Workshop.

The project was organized by Rtn.Minoo Lalvani, Director – Community Service I from Rotary Club of Bombay West with support from R/Ann Urmil Puri and co-host Rotary Clubs viz. Rotary Club of Mumbai Greencity, Rotary Club of Mumbai North Island, Rotary Club of Bombay Juhu Beach, Rotary Club of JVPD Mumbai and Rotary Club of Bombay East.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Walkathon - Walk for Good Health!

 Walkathon @ Juhu Beach, Mumbai

Sunday, October 2, 2016…. 6:30 AM…..  a huge crowd of over 1900 gathered on Juhu Beach, behind Granth Book Store, sporting specially designed T-Shirts & Caps having logos of sponsors and Rotary....  waiting for the flag-off of the mega Rotary event of the year – WALKATHON @ Juhu Beach – to celebrate The Rotary Foundation (TRF)’s centennial year.  A light October drizzle doesn’t dampen the high spirits of the Rotarians, members of Juhu Beach Walkers Group (JBWG) and Consumer Guidance Society of India (CGSI), their families and members of the public from neighborhood…  all charged up and full of enthusiasm, ready to celebrate and create awareness about societal health concerns like diabetes, keeping the city clean, etc. Rotarian Harmindar Singh Patheja kept the morale high with his witty compeering.

The event organized by RI  District's TRF Centennial Celebrations Committee, Rotary Club of Bombay West (RCBW), a premier Rotary Club of District 3141, along with 14 (fourteen) other Rotary Clubs as co-hosts and supported by JBWG and CGSI was sponsored by Aditya Birla Health Insurance Company Limited – a responsible health insurance firm being launched soon with unmatched health insurance products and services.

The WALKATHON was flagged off by Rotarian Jairajbhai Thacker, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Shri Vile Parle Kelwani Mandal, a charitable Trust which owns and runs several educational institutions of repute in Mumbai and other prominent cities in India, in presence of Rotarian Gopalrai Mandhania, District Governor, Rotary International District 3141 flanked by his charming wife Smt.Seema Mandhania.  Among other dignitaries present at the event were Rotarian Aslam Merchant, President of Rotary Club of Bombay West, Past District Governors Rotarian Sajjan Goenka, Subhash Kulkarni and Dr.Jayant Kulkarni, Rotarian Ashok Deorah, Assistant Governor and Chief Co-ordinator of the event along with a galaxy of District Officials, Presidents, Past Presidents of co-host Rotary Clubs and other Rotary Clubs, President and members of Inner Wheel Club of Bombay West and their families.

After completion of the 5 Km walk on the Beach, the dignitaries assembled on the make-shift platform to honour 5 members of JBWG who were over 90 years and still active, taking regular walk on the beach for the past several years. 

Addressing the audience, DG Gopalrai Mandhania thanked Shri Mayank Bhatwal, CEO, Aditya Birla Health Insurance for having sponsored the WALKATHON event and congratulated the  RCBW Team for meticulous planning and implementation of the mega PR event for Rotary District 3141.

Ms.Kavita Seth, the renowned Sufi Singer, graced the event along with her husband Rtn.Dharmesh Bothra, President, Rotary Club of Mumbai Versova.  Ms.Kavita enthralled the crowd by singing a few lines from her popular bollywood numbers, adding zing to the festive like atmosphere.

The event ended with a vote of thanks by Rtn.Aslam Merchant.  The participants were then given a healthy breakfast which was sponsored by Rtn.Prashant Patel, member of Rotary Club of Bombay West. 

What the Leaders had to say about WALKATHON @ Juhu Beach…

“Thank You Rotary for giving us an opportunity to sponsor this mega event which has been well planned and well executed.”  - Shri Mayank Bhatwal, CEO, Aditya Birla Health Insurance Co.Ltd.

“Another novel event of Pratham Year for TRF Centennial Celebrations…  well conceptualized and executed by Team RCBW…. Enjoyed the walk in drizzling rain to spread awareness of Diabetes…. Seema joins me thanking all for making it an enjoyable and successful event.” – District Governor Gopalrai Mandhania

“An awesome event… well organized and appreciated by all…  loss for all those who missed such a great event” – Sajjan Goenka, Past District Governor

“Great Event…. Congratulations to the Team RCBW for a superb event” – Rtn.Rajendra Agarwal, Chief Co-ordinator, Dist.3141.

“Heartiest congratulations to Team RCBW for the excellent project…. Simply superb and seamless”  - Rtn.Rajan Dua, District Secretary & Avenue Chair – TRF Centennial Celebrations.

“Lonavla weather on Juhu Beach with super crowd” – Meera Sheth, President, Inner Wheel Club of Bombay West