Sunday, March 8, 2009

Midnight Scholars - Seva to the slum youth studying under street lights

Om Sri Sairam

The World's Menu of Miseries
is Mind boggling-
All round Recession.
Free-fall economies.
Fast spreading violence.
Misfiring strategies....etc. etc.

When you integrate with the
rest of the world for
globalised Prosperity,
their negatives get downloaded first
and end up as globalised Misery.

Between boom and doom,
destiny oscillates.
Losing all transient gains in one swing.
So much for Globalisation and Materialism.

But Spirituality shows the way.
To remain unfazed in any crisis.
It teaches one to Love selflessly.
To serve others and discover lasting
Peace and Joy,that are beyond
the Periphery of Materialism.
It redefines 'Abundance'

It gives a third option
beyond "Haves" and "Have nots"-
To be "Don't Wants".
By fixing Ceiling on desires,
as prescribed by Baba.

It shows-When you Love, you expand.
When you Serve, you are empowered.

ChemburSeva is constantly researching
to discover Seva models that
are simple,deliverable,
and within everyone's reach.
Without having to open the purse,
but only the heart. With Love.
And get the blissful experience of Seva.

One such model is the
"Midnight Scholar seva",
initiated two years ago.

Oh! The Great SSC examn.!
And the nightmares the parents go through.
Come SSC examn and our kids go
into a different orbit.
Everyone dotes on them.
Parents take leave to monitor.
Relatives call up and pamper.
Everyone at home sacrifices a lot to
accomodate the SSC kid.
Family functions missed.Parties avoided.
All care taken that they dont fall sick.
Almost like how Niel Armstrong would have been
prepared before landing on the moon.
May be rightfully so.

But just peep out of the window
and look at the nearby slum.
The kids out there doing SSC
struggling to cope.
Without enough space even to
keep the books, sit & study.

In Chembur,they choose a public garden - Chimney Garden
(Near Golf Club) for overnight study.
Where there is no facility
except four lights kept on through the night -
the maximum Govt could do..
About 60-70 SSC students study there overnight
without any basic amenities around.
In absolute pathetic condition, uncared for.
Thats when we did a petty survey
and discovered the dire need for a Seva model
that could address all these.

We identified five items that can
add value and comfort to the hard working kids -
Tea, eats like Poha,sandwich etc
Biscuits,bananas and Odomos and OTC medicines for headache etc.

Tobe collected from willing donors (only in kind. NO cash)
from their doorsteps at 11.30 p.m.everyday (diff donors each day)
for three weeks during the examns
and delivered exactly 12.00 midnight in the Garden,
when the garden would have only serious students
and not the other wanderers who otherwise occupy it
during early hours of the night.

In order that maximum donors participate,
a donor is normally allowed only one item for one night.
So that, in two/three weeks we run the program till last examn,
nearly 75 to 100 donors can be covered.

By Divine Grace, it got implemented
with clockwork precision
during Mar 07 and Mar 08.

These scholars studying through the night
are named by us as "Midnight Scholars".
And all are given T-shirts with the imprint
"Midnight Scholars" which they wear
and conclude this programme
by walking in the wee hours after last examn.
from the Garden in Chembur
to Siddhi Vinayak Prabhadevi, nearly 12 kms
as a mark of "Thanksgiving to the Lord of Mumbai"
our own Ganpathi Papa.
12 kms by walk to Siddhi Vinayak - Thanksgiving 2008
Thereafter many of them choose to
continue the relationship by joining our
free courses for the slum Youth-
Personality development, English Speaking (Bol Bindaas)
Computer basic and then corporate training.
Those in the vicinity of Chembur, Ghatkopar, Kurla
can participate by providing any of the listed items
(Only one item in one instance only, to enable max people to participate)
that can be served to nearly 70 students in one go.
The items will be picked up from donors' residence
between 11.00 and 11.30 pm with prior intimation.

Also one can participate in distribution(Ladies excuse)
during daily midnight (12'0 clock) sessions.
Bet 12.00 to 12.30 a.m.we distribute, interact (as they munch & drink tea)
and disburse quietly in the darkness without any trace.

Interested ones can SMS/call ChemburSeva 9821482711

The "Midnight Scholar Seva" for the current year -Mar 09
will start from 5th Mar 2009 till the last SSC examn.

There is a different world out there,
waiting tobe loved and served...
Discover the bliss in Serving the deserving.


Viduit said...

Dear ChemburSeva team, You are doing very good work....keep it up ! Your work is inspiring us. We pray to Swami to continue to shower his grace on the entire ChemburSeva team :)

R.Chandrashekar, said...

Thank You. Sairam. It is because of inspiring people behind us such things are possible. Sairam