KHNA YOUTH PAST ACTIVITIES:
Kerala Hindus of North America (KHNA) presents yet another Hindu Camp for children and youth in the Greater Toronto Area, on 12th February 2017, Sunday, 2pm to 5pm. This camp is being conducted in partnership with Chinmaya Mission Toronto, at their Ashram in Brampton, Ontario. The theme of the camp is "The Game of Life - An introduction”. The camp will be run by young Canadian born and trained Acharyas of Chinmaya Mission, Acharya Dev, Acharya Gina and Acharya Sachin. Through activities, games, an inspirational biopic (movie) and interactive workshops this camp will introduce the concepts of Sanatana Dharma (Hinduism), its relevance and application in everyday scenarios of life at school, at home, among friends, peer pressure i.e. values that will help navigate one through the game of life. For Adults there will be a complementary knowledge session by the Acharyas and a presentation by KHNA team on their work, activities and the Kerala Hindus of North America Biennial Convention in Detroit. Since spots are limited due to venue capacity, please register yourself and anyone else in your family who may be attending. Your registration also helps us determine number of students attending and help plan the event accordingly.
Link to Register : https://goo.gl/forms/IL1i8dtCBqK3NOh23
Chetan Nambiar KHNA Youth Internship Attapadi Report
Kerala Hindus of North America (KHNA) Youth in partnership with Swami Vivekananda Medical Mission, introduced successfully this year an opportunity for KHNA youth to serve Kerala and connect with the soul of Kerala. Our first intern this year was Chetan Nambiar from Dayton, Ohio. Chetan who is in Grade 12 spent a month serving in Attapady for a month, in July and August 2016. Here is a report by Chetan on his experience during this Internship.
Chetan Nambiar, Dayton, OH
Attapadi is a valley region that straddles the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border. On all sides, it is surrounded by mountains, and elephants and monkeys
regularly move through the area. The people are extremely friendly, and live happily, despite the region being labeled as one of the most impoverished
in India. The Attapadi region was once entirely self-sufficient (one of the few such regions in the world). However, as more settlers came
to the region, the situation degraded. The development systems initiated by the government have done little, if nothing, to solve the problems
that face the region. As the rest of India developed, Attapadi stayed behind. A quick glance at the problems facing the region would show a
high rate of alcoholism and drug use, a lack of well paying jobs or education, poor infrastructure, illiteracy, along with endemic infant mortality,
tuberculosis, and typhoid. Every time it rains, hospitals are flooded with new cases of dysentery and diarrhea. Abnormally high rates of mental
diseases persist, including depression, psychotic, and anxiety disorders. All of these problems occur while the region slowly loses its culture
to increased settlement. The need for sustainable community-oriented development is paramount.
This internship provided me the opportunity to assist with this development. Working with the Swami Vivekananda Medical Mission (SVMM), I was given the opportunity to be a health/social worker. Not only does SVMM treat roughly 300 patients (mainly tribal) for free each day, it runs numerous social programs to assist in the community. There I was able to work with these programs in the village of Vachipathi, a hamlet of around 450 people.
Initially, the work consisted mainly going door-to-door and collecting information about the residents. I would ask for their name, age, education, health, marital status, social and governmental problems, and number of children. In total, 103 houses were logged for all these fields (347 people total). From this data, suggestions were made to SVMM to create four different programs. The first two were combined: create a youth football group, and within that group, create a program for occupation specialization for those who did not complete school up to 10th standard. The next program was to create an infrastructure complaint registration. Through the registration, villagers would have another channel to speak about problems such as lack of electricity, water, or poor housing. The last program was to create a health awareness program, were locals were warned about standing water, the necessity of toilets, and general disease prevention. After these ideas were presented to the village development committee (run by locals), we were able to institute all of these programs within the village.
Some days, however, I would stay back at the hospital. There I was given the ability to see how a hospital runs and observe patients. The logistics of treating over 300 patients a day with one doctor presents a large daily task for those working in the hospital, and observing the process taught me about the health care process in a developing region. Working with the hospital, I also went out and visited mental health patients in the community, and made observations along with social workers. And from an epidemiological standpoint, I was able to assist by reviewing general patient data and trying to spot notable trends. Under the umbrella of the medical mission, there were other programs for which to help too, such as speaking at an English medium school or observing the construction of new houses. There was always something to do at the medical mission.
The typical day started at 9 am, where I would either go to the hospital for assignment or to the village where you worked. At some point in the
day, we would go back to the hospital to report on the findings. At around 7 pm, I would head back to the ashram, and eat dinner before possibly
attending a satsang class. After the class, the collected data would reviewed, and I would try to come up with specific solutions to the problems
facing the communities. This would be the schedule for all of the week but the off day (if one took it). Some days I would leave for the village
in the evening, and on these days I was able to attend more of the classes offered at the ashram and enjoy the scenic beauty on display. These
days were nice for relaxing, and allowed me to think more specifically about what was necessary to accomplish. The accommodations provided
were nice, if sparse, reflecting the modest outlook one was expected to have at the ashram. This mentality, exhibited by both the residents
of the ashram and the villagers, was appreciated as it contrasted nicely with the consumerist vibes of American society.
I would recommend this internship to all who are interested. Not because it was fun (it was) or because the landscape was beautiful (it was) or because it gave me an opportunity to see a different culture (that was fun); rather, I would recommend the internship because it puts you in the crux of what real development takes. Real development is hard work. It’s not flashy work, and may not be the best conversation starter. Real development isn’t just building a school: it also means staffing it, providing books and supplies, and making sure the children are safe. This type of work requires that the logistics of everything be considered in what you do. The work can be extremely tiring. But it’s good works that forces you out of your comfort zone and appreciate problems that you don’t have. If that’s something you want to do, this internship would be something for you to work in.
This is an unpaid summer internship and offers opportunity to youth and young adults to contribute their time to a larger movement of serving humanity, while engaging in self-development. Interns spend the duration of their internship working with NGOs in the community. They seek to serve and engage in a transformative experience that empowers them, as they strive to make an impact in their chosen field. To know more and apply for internship in 2017, please CLICK HERE
Striking to Perfection - Bowling & Knowledge Workshop
Kerala Hindus of North America (KHNA) Youth presents an afternoon of learning and fun featuring Bowling and two Knowledge Sessions, in the Greater Toronto Area.
Knowledge Webinar - “How to talk to strangers about Hinduism” – by Hindu American Foundation’s Murali Balaji @ DC – Sep 2016
Knowledge Webinar by Acharya Vivek - October 2016
KHNA Youth Seva Activities – To raise $ for KHNA’s Tribal Empowerment Project in Attapady, Kerala
Summer Youth Internship in Kerala – July 11th to August 12, 20016
"Ordinary to Extraordinary" the study of Vedanta by Acharya Vivek - weekend camp in August 26, 2016 in the DC, Maryland area
Knowledge Webinar – “Being Arya - How to be a master of all situations !!!” – by Vikrant Tomar
Knowledge Webinar by Acharya Sachin - August 2016
Mind Your Dharma – KHNA Youth Camp May 15, 2016, Mississauga, ON
Knowledge Webinars – Minute to Mind Management – By Acharya Vivek
Knowledge Webinar – Why I became a Hindu – By Stephen Knapp
KHNA Youth Toronto Bowling Knowledge Session – July 10, 2016
KHNA Youth Activities Report 2016:
Youth activity report 2016 (1033 KB)