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Ashwini Charitable Trust Newsletter 2009

Introduction Ashwini Charitable Trust currently supports 117 children with the help of corporate and individual sponsors. At least 40 individuals volunteer their time with us to educate and empower the children. Owing to the generosity of our well wishers and sponsors we have been able to open our doors to 25 more children this year, in contrast to the 10 children we pledge to take in each year. Our children live in the slums of M.V. Garden, Sivan Chetty Garden, Slum Quarters, and Austin Town. This year we have been able to take one more slum under our wing, the Doddigunta slum at Cox town thus impacting 25 children from 12 families. We hope you enjoy reading this summary of our activities as much as we enjoyed putting it together. Marathalli 2 children

Doddigunta slum 25 children ACT Resource Center Cantt. 2 children MV Garden 55 children Slum quarters 11 children

Sivanchetti gardens 20 children Austin Town 2 children

Contents How far have we come? Milestones

What were our new initiatives? Internship, Mentoring and Training Programs

What have our children learnt? Recreational & Extra Curricular Activities

What are our regular activities? How did we celebrate? Who helped us? Fund Raising & Sponsorship Acknowledgements

The next step... Contribute Volunteer



How far have we come? Milestones

82 80 70

117 50 40 35

65 30 20

23 9 2000






Boys Girls Number of boys & girls

Number of children

Academic Statistics High school (13-15yrs) 24 children

College (16-20yrs) 23 children


College (16-20yrs) III BCA II B.Com. I PUC




60% Primary & middle school (5-12yrs) 70 children


I B.Com. Engg.

2 Our mission is to educate the children and support them till they are gainfully employed. This is our first year to deliver on the promise. 2 girls have been gainfully employed this year. We are also proud to share how our children fared in their annual exams this year. Annual Exam Results SSLC exams - All 5 children who took the exams this year have passed. Ashwini was the highest performer in 2009 securing 70% I PUC results - 7 children appeared for the exam. Vineetha scored the highest marks securing 75 % in the commerce stream. II PUC exams - All 6 children who appeared for the exams secured 1st class. Sunitha S. - 83%, Kasturi R. - 79.56%, Nadeem - 72.17%, Renuka R - 71.83%, Sangeetha R. - 67.5%, Revathi N. - 67.5 % Nadeem enters college Nadeem got admission in Oxford College of Engineering in Sept. ‘09 He is pursuing BE in Mechanical Engineering.

Girls on the job!

Divya P was unable to clear her PUC exams, however she was put through DTP training, that included the use of software tools like Adobe Photoshop etc. She got a job at a printing establishment with a starting salary of Rs.3,500/. The family has been supported by the mother's salary who works as a cook and a live-in maid servant. It was very important for Divya to be a trained worker rather than an unskilled labourer.

Somia E joined ACT as a 12 year old in 2000. She completed her B.Com. from St. Joseph's College of Commerce and secured a job in the Accounts Department of HP! Her starting salary is Rs. 12,000/- per month. Somia's father is a tailor and mother, a domestic maid. Somia was determined to be the first graduate in her family. She is the first child of ACT to graduate and secure a job. Her integration into mainstream society is our first step of meeting the mission! Somia hosted a special lunch for ACT children and volunteers with her first salary


How far have we come? Milestones A community ACT: ACT turns 10 in 2010 We decided to make a documentary showcasing our various activities. Our special focus was on volunteering: to show ordinary people doing ordinary work but creating extraordinary impact in the lives of the children. We also depicted the slums from where the children come and are transformed SBI Girl Adoption Program State Bank of India continued their Girl Adoption Program for the third consecutive year. They were sponsoring 6 girls, this year they adopted 2 more raising the total to 8. Mrs Arundhati Bhattacharya, the CGM felicitated the girls herself. AXA joins hands with ACT AXA Business Services entered into a MOU with ACT including a gift of money and volunteering opportunities at our Resource Center.


What were our new initiatives? Internship, Mentoring and Training Programs Although the efforts of one person may seem small, every act of service can have an important impact on someone … and millions of individuals can create a revolution of sorts. Whatever your reason for volunteering or sponsoring, once involved, it’s easy to get hooked— to ‘catch the spirit’ of community involvement!

Cisco Career Guidance Program Pascal Turchi of Cisco arranged a career guidance program at the Cisco office for Kasturi, Lakshmi and Renuka. Members of Cisco WAN invited Shashikala to participate in their G-TAC workshop to give her career a direction Summer Internship Program ARM Embedded Technology arranged summer internships for 4 girls at their offices in Bangalore. Kumari and Revathi B. pursuing B.A. at St. Joseph's College of Arts and Science worked in the HR Department. Lakshmi B. pursuing B.Com. at St. Joseph's College of Commerce worked in the Accounts Department. Shashikala pursuing B.C.A at St. Joseph's College of Arts and Science interned in the Networking and Administrative departments. Goldman Sachs' Mentoring Program Season 1 - The year's grand finale to the mentoring program conducted by Goldman Sachs ended with a visit to their office followed by lunch hosted by them. The children participated in a series of presentations on various topics to all the mentors present. Season 2 - The second season of the Mentoring Program was flagged off by Bhanu Chandran. The program was aimed at initiating interactions between industry professionals and ACT children to prepare them for campus placements. One on one sessions were held to enhance their interview skills, group discussion tactics and aid in personality development.


What are our regular activities? Annual Exam Preparation Professional teachers from a reputed Tutorial college were hired to prepare our SSLC, I and II PUC children for the forthcoming Board Exams. In order to improve the children's efficiency, we purchased state-of- theart school furniture including desks, chairs, and white boards. Volunteers' Meetings Most of our volunteers spend around 3 hours on weekends or weekdays. The volunteers tutor them in academic subjects. Since all the children are first generation literates, these sessions aid them in coping with their studies. During meetings we help volunteers to understand the children's background while they share their success stories with all of us. Parents' Meetings Issues addressed include induction process of new admissions into the Trust, procedures to keep in mind, children's discipline, preparation for SSLC exam. Children's Weekly Meetings Thought for the day, narrating stories, addressing problems and interpersonal issues are some of the topics we handle so that we can build the children's personality. The children are involved in addressing disciplinary issues, in fact they decide the punishment for breaking rules. Birthday celebrations We celebrate birthdays of the children on the last Saturday of every month. All the children whose birthdays fall in a particular month gather to cut a huge cake. We also gift them a cake to celebrate with their families. Saving Bank Accounts All the children of the trust hold savings bank accounts which they jointly operate with their mothers. Home visits We conduct home visits to understand the children’s backgrounds and challenges. This also helps us to build the community spirit. Nutritional supplement We have created a breakfast cereal mixture with the help of the mothers. Every child is given a kilo of this mix every month thus meeting their daily requirement of vitamins and nutrients.


What have our kids learnt? Methodology and activities Our Methodology We follow Howard Gardener's Multiple Intelligences Theory which states that all aspects of human intelligence can be studied under 8 broad categories: Interpersonal, Intrapersonal, Musical, Kinesthetic, Environmental, Spatial, Linguistic and Mathelogical. At ACT, we arrange and involve the children in various activities so that we are able to determine the children's dominant intelligence and train them further in that field. In this way, the children will be able to seek employment in areas that best suit their native intelligence and abilities.

Aero Show 2009 Col. Malhotra from PWC and his team organised a viewing of the Full Dress Rehearsal of the Aero show 2009 for 40 children and 9 volunteers. Tai Chi A Chinese volunteer, Ran San from Goldman Sachs taught Tai Chi to 12 of our senior children. Bharathanatayam Classes 11 of the senior girls are currently pursuing a foundation course in classical dance conducted by a professional in the field, Hemashree Subramanian Inter School Drawing and Painting Competition The Hindu organized an inter school drawing and painting competition under its Young World banner. Over a thousand children participated in this. Of the 20 entries from ACT, 10 entries were shortlisted for the finals. They received participation certificates signed by the renowned N. Ram himself. Goldmans Sach's Summer project For the fifth consecutive year, Goldman Sachs arranged for 17 in house and outdoor projects for summer 2009. The excursions included trips to the Central Jail, Chennapatna Toy factory, Lalbagh, and Nandini Dairy Farm. A Sports Day was also organised at the RBANM's grounds. Their in-house activities were designed to make History, Geography, Science and Maths interesting learning experiences. Besides these, candles and bag- making classes were also conducted. The children spent time with and learnt embroidery from physically challenged children at Cheshire Home. Their summer activities ended with painting the outside walls of the Resource center.


Vishwas 2009 The inter-NGO contest organized by Rotaract Bangalore Kalyan saw our children walk away with the first prize in group dance for the third year in succession. The contest was tough since the children were given the song only 48 hours before the final day and were asked to choreograph it themselves. We also won the group song prize. In the entertainment category our children's rendition of Jai Ho was greatly appreciated. Environment program Divya Nahender spoke to the children about the advantages of segregating garbage. The idea was to spread the message of segregating wet waste, paper and plastic so that the latter materials could be recycled. 60 children from ACT were selected to canvass door to door in the neighbourhood. The children, in an effort to lead by example, and motivate the neighbours, collected plastic and paper wastes from the neighbourhood. We now have a collection centre at the RC where people from the neighbourhood drop off their paper and plastic waste which is subsequently sent to ITC for recycling. ACT children ensure they bring the wastes for recycling from their homes as well. Volunteers from Goldman Sachs helped the children with their environment project. They personally went to every house in the neighbourhood and spread the message of segregating waste and recycling. The day ended with a sumptuous lunch organized by Goldman Sachs. Visit to Infosys Campus, Mysore It was a dream come true, when Infosys invited 39 senior girls for a visit to their Mysore campus in December for 3 days. The girls were fascinated by the Infosys campus and enjoyed the greenery and unobtrusive buildings. They indulged in the never ending buffet counters. The girls exclaimed that many of their homes were actually smaller than the attached bathrooms and said that they felt like princesses with a room of their own. We visited the Mysore Zoo, Chamundi Hills, St.Philomena's Church, Shivanasamudram Falls, Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, Bulmurri Falls, Srirangapatna and Sangam.


How did we celebrate? Festivities Annual Day Spirit of ACT, a short musical Our Annual Day has always served as a platform for our sponsors to meet our children and their families. It also provides the children with an excellent opportunity to showcase their various talents in dance, drama and art. We were honoured to have Kate Elfrink, Lea King, Hema Hattangadi, Bhanu Chandran, Mimi Parthasarthy and Arpita Datta in our midst. World Thalassemia day Paromita Sen Hershan invited 30 children to perform dances at St. John's Medical Hospital auditorium on World Thalassemia day. Our children captivated the medical students with their fantastic performances. Dance recitals Back by popular demand, a repeat performance of Jai Ho was held at the Unnati Auditorium as part of a function to felicitate Mrs. Bhagirathi and Mr. Raghunandan on their 50th wedding anniversary. Mr. Raghunandan was also celebrating his 80th birthday. Mrs. Bhagirathi helps run the Homeopathic clinic next door and has always been our ardent supporter. We mourn the loss of Mr Raghunandan who passed away suddenly in February 2010. 50 children were invited to visit the ARM Embedded Technologies office to perform dances for 30 minutes. Bangalore Cares invited the ACT children to put up a show at National College, Jayanagar to celebrate Vijayadasami which was during the Joy of Giving week. 70 children showcased 11 dances in a recital which we fondly christened Nritya Kusuma Manjari meaning a garland of colorful dances. Oracle Day of Service 12 volunteers from Oracle spent a day with our children as a part of their day of service. Their objective was to create awareness about waste management. They helped the children in their door to door canvassing about segregating waste and recycling paper and plastic. Microsoft's Joy of Giving Program Sreekanth and his team from Microsoft spent an afternoon with the children playing games and organizing other activities as a part of the Joy of giving program. They also gifted the children with stationery.


How did we celebrate? Festivities AXA Annual Day On the occasion of their Annual day Town Hall, AXA Technologies invited the ACT children to perform at Hotel Grand Ashok. 30 children performed 3 lively group dances. For the first time in their lives the children experienced a standing ovation. Infineon Event 50 children from Class V and upwards were taken to a homely resort, where a series of team games were arranged for them. All in all, the children had a fun-filled day. Diwali Celebrations We held our community Diwali celebrations at the RBANM's grounds. Anil Gupta bought crackers from Hosur for the occasion. We had 15 volunteers participating in the celebrations. All the children burst crackers under the supervision of a volunteer. The volunteers made the day memorable with their participation and sweets. Rajayotsava Day Celebrations Bengali association invited our children to perform at their Rajyotsava day function. Bakrid Celebrations A special lunch was organised at the centre to celebrate Bakrid. Christmas Celebrations Christmas was celebrated with much joy, giving and receiving. Last year, Lea King donated a 12ft. Christmas tree to ACT. This year, Shubhra Sinha continued Lea's tradition by organising a common lunch of biryani, cake and sweets for all. She also brought several gifts for the children. The children took much interest in setting up the tree and decorated it themselves. The senior girls wrapped gifts for every child and kept them under the tree. Jai Ho! Starting with the 1st performance at our Annual day, our children have till date given 9 fantastic renditions of “Jai Ho”, the award winning number from the movie “Slumdog Millionaire”


How did we celebrate? Festivities The Avtaar experience 52 middle school, high school and senior children wore a new avatar with dark glasses, huge tubs of popcorn and tall glasses of coke to watch the 3 D film at Fame Lido. Shubra Sinha, Jignasha and Harshal Patel, Savita Kini, Manmeet Singh, Vikas Dhawan, Kamal lamba, Toby, Kiran, and Leo of Cisco created this wonderful opportunity for our children. Felicitations & Farewells John Morgridge, Founder, Chairman Emiretus, Cisco, with members of the CARE Board were touring India as part of their community awareness project. 23 senior children were invited to perform for them at the Elfrinks’ . A sumptuous dinner was served. This was followed a fortnight later by a farewell dinner for a team of Cisco employees who were returning to the USA after their assignment in India. Once again 32 children were invited to perform a series of dances. Farewell to Alexius Collette CEO of Philips India Ltd. All the NGOs that Philips supports were invited to a touching farewell party. ACT was feted as the first NGO to be included in their CSR projects.


Who helped us? Fund Raising & Sponsorship Auction Lea King of Cisco arranged an auction of her personal effects before leaving Bangalore. The proceeds of the auction were divided among 3 charities, ACT being one of them. As a special request the ACT children were asked to perform. They received an encore for their spectacular performance leading to a unique experience that had the dance being auctioned as well! Spandan Harshad and Phalguni Rawal of Eshani Boutique organised a charity program called Spandan at the Town Hall. They were kind enough to donate part proceeds of the program to ACT. Bangalore Marathon The Bangalore Marathon organised by Procam helped us mobilise Rs. 13.3 lakhs which is incidentally half our annual budget. We are grateful to and overwhelmed by the huge support given by all our dedicated volunteers to achieve our target of 10 lakhs. We are extrememly grateful to Mr T. C Meenakshisundaram for raising funds for ACT Bangalore Cares organized a function to present the marathon cheques to the Top 3 fund raisers at the Bangalore Marathon. ACT was felicitated for being the 3rd highest. This was followed by a Press Meet at the ITC


Who helped us? Acknowledgments We are grateful to the following for their invaluable support Organisations that support us: Arm Embedded Technologies Infineon Technologies Philips Electronics, India Ltd BNA Technology Consulting Ltd AXA Business Services Surabhi Charitable Trust Overseas Women's Foundation SVB India Advisors State Bank of India Community Services of Bangalore T.S. Mahalingam & Sons

SAP Business Objects IDG Ventures India Advisors Goldman Sachs Conzerv systems AXA Technology Services India Dell India R&D Menda Charitable Trust Walt Disney Co. Walmart Sterna Security

Individual Sponsors Over 70 individuals contributed over Rs. 4000 each. Smita Menon Sunita Vaidya Desikan Asha Raja Sandya Shiya Joseph Srivathsan Mythili Diwan B.V. Rajagopal Ajay Khatri Ditipriya Das Indu Bhandia Viay Kumar K.Kumar Shiv Nair Anup Gupta Sarangan B.V. Anand Birunda D Baba Sam Dipu Vikram Gautam Datta Rohit Arora V. Ramesh

Devraj Anil Gupta Radhika Bobba Jagdeep Gambhir Muneesh Sharda Vivek Mahadevan Aarthi Muralidharan Shivkumar Swamy Srikanth Raghavan Gaurav Agarwal Sujjan Suresh Talwar Lea King Preejith Amit Singh Sourabh Agarwal Ajesh Kumar R. Krishnakumar Clayton D'Souza Shivayogi Turmari Natarajan Rangaswamy Albeena D'Souza Biju P.John Vikas Murali Krishnakumar Bhat

Sunil Kunders Deepak Kukreja Radhika Seshashayee N.V. Nagasubramaniam Swaminathan Subramaniam Alaganandan Balaraman Ganesh Krishnamurthy Chandrashekar Turha T.C. Meenakshi Sundaram Abhijeet Mukherjee Mahesh Kumar Harish Reddy Sumit Pasricha Devendra Choudhry Shridhar Shroff Sandeep Shandilya V. Janakiraman Ashwin Krishnan Jayanthakumar Lahiri Shankar Vishwanathan Dr. Vivekanand Prabhakaran Nair Nandakumar.N.Mangalam

13 Individual Sponsors (contd.) Chandramouleshwaran NV Nagasubramanaiam Raja Narrain Deb Sneha Gupta Ganesh Krishnamoorthy Salil Kumar Agarwal

Vijai Kumar Jitendra Kitta Shetty Bhavana Samtani Angel Jwala U Muralidharan

We would like to extend our special gratitude to Ms. Lea King for standing by us in all our endeavors Team At Infosys for all their support. Share Initiative Distribution of essential commodities would not have been possible but for the generous contributions made by the following people. We acknowledge their kindness and desire to make a difference. Nirupama Durga Prasad B.V. Anand Lakshmi Ravi Walmart Vivek Bandhla Jyotsna Ramkumar M. Shankar Lakshmi Ravi Sathya Krishnan Vilasini Shekar

Abhay and Bhoomika Anju and Vinay Jain Romesh of Sree Mithai Zuber & Mrs. Nahender V. Janakiraman Sujata Mukherjee Andal Ramanathan Sahana Mukherjee Radhika S. Aravindam Angana ladies circle Sonia Chugani

Laura Hana Priya Girish Prema Smita Menon V Ramesh Ajay Khatri Gregor Palli Ravi Kumar

Volunteers We would like to thank all our existing and new volunteers for all their support and hard work that has made 2009 a memorable year. A big welcome to all our new volunteers: Shubhra Sinha Karen Baye Padma Shankar Kamala Padma Shankar Nishi Roy Choudhary Surya Dwivedi Rushabh Solani Rekha Malvathu Sowjanya Prajina Prabhu Ramadas Safeer CV Rachna Prasad Venu K

Saravanan Siddharth Hegde Sreeja Purkayastha Mohit Katiyar Taniya Bose Pankaj Kumar Verma Srikanth Amaraneni Ritika Datta Ambika Danappanavar Veena Raghunandan Aditya Ganesh Dajana Ruhlmann Katherine

Beena Pancholi Garima Tiwari Shoaib Ansari Amrita Sarma Ashish Srivastava Bharath Greeshma Krishnan Lakshmy Krishnan Niviya Vijayan Elsa Thomas Ruksana Abdul

The next step... Contribute A small step by you can be a giant leap for many children. Take this step and help someone take their next. Pledge your contribution in the following ways. The amount listed below is per child per annum. School Junior College Graduation

Rs. 1500 - Rs. 4000 Rs. 4000 - Rs. 10,000 Rs. 10,000 - Rs. 44,000

Corpus Fund - A large and healthy fund to safeguard the future of our organisation and help us to support our projects Admin & maintenance - Contribution towards the administration and maintenance. Cheques/ DDs may be drawn in favor of: The Ashwini Charitable Trust, payable at Bangalore. All contributions are eligible for Tax Exemption under Section 80G.

Volunteer If you enjoy reading a story to kids, love to interact with children, like to teach them new things, or wish to volunteer your time, we would love to see you at our centre. For more information, please get in touch with us or feel free to visit our Resource centre in Ulsoor, Bangalore.













Making of the documentary...





ege! l l o C t ala a k i h s a h

Ashwini Charitable Trust (ACT) is a Registered Non- Governmental Organisation that educates and empowers underprivileged children in and around the slums of Ulsoor, Bangalore and supports them till they are gainfully employed. We run an After-School Activity Centre. The Trust provides the children with the following: - Tuition and coaching classes - Stationery, notebooks, raincoats, blankets, bed sheets, medicines, and vaccines - Classes in Dance, Drama, Art and Photography - Computer training - Professional training in writing resume, facing interviews - Emotional counseling to face problems in life and WHO life skills training Our primary concern is to educate the children. We also pay their school and college fees. We do not charge the children for any of the above.

E-mail - Website - Contact - Dr. J.Bhavani Ramesh +91 98442 7854, Radhika Arvindam +91 93419 79942 Ashwini Charitable Trust Resource Center: #3, St. John’s Rd. Cross, Off Osborne Rd. Ulsoor,Bangalore - 560042, Ph no. 080 4092 4050

2009 ACT Newsletter  
2009 ACT Newsletter