ADBU-UCDVO begin Volunteering Programme 2017

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Children of Goriyaguli village dancing during inauguration

ADBU (Soapur): ADBU and UCDVO have commenced the international student volunteering exchange programme 2017 here today 11th June 2017 with colourful opening ceremonies in the villages of Hatimurah, Patarkuchi, Goriyaguli and Upper Tapesia. The opening ceremonies were participated in large numbers by villagers, well wishers and ADBU staff members.

The Exchange Programme 2017 is the fourth year of collaboration between ADBU and UCDVO. It began in 2014 with a team of 23 members and today the team comprise of 33 members.

The Exchange Programme aims –

  1. To channel the skills, energy and enthusiasm of university students into projects
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    Children of Patarkuchi village dancing Assamese and Karbi mixed dance

    which enhance the development of marginalised and underprivileged communities.

  2. To create space and opportunity for university students from ADBU, India and University College Dublin (UCD) Ireland to share learning and experience in the areas of participatory community development and social outreach.
  3. To enhance intercultural awareness between students and communities for the purpose of increasing global solidarity and interconnectedness.
  4. To promote attitude of appreciation for other cultures, practices, and traditions.
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ADBU student selected for Global Shapers Community

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Miss Steffi Soibam

Guwahati  — An MA degree Mass Communication student from Assam Don Bosco University (ADBU) School of Social Sciences is one of 11 young people selected to be part of the Global Shapers Community (GSC) – a  network of young people who are relentlessly working to better their communities across the globe.

Miss Steffi Soibam from Imphal (Manipur) who completed two-year MA degree in Mass Communication in May 2016 from ADBU Azara campus was one of 11 candidates shortlisted.

“The selection is however  provisional and subject to approval from the Global Shapers Community, Geneva of the World Economic Forum, based on the performance of each candidate during their three months of probation,” says Curator GSC Imphal-Hub Ms Monika Khangembam announcing the result of the final screening on 29 May 2016.

Steffi 1Miss Soibam currently placed in Imphal says, “I am overjoyed to receive this news, and I am privileged to be part of the youth group chosen to serve the community.”

The Global Shapers Community is a network of Hubs developed and led by young people who are exceptional in their potential, their achievements and their drive to make a contribution to their communities.

A non- profit, non -political body under the initiative of the World Economic Forum the biggest world business forum, GSC is “One of best opportunities to connect with the entire world in just one platform.”

In a competition initiated last August 15, exceptional young people were to be selected to form a team for Imphal Hub under the mentorship of Mr. Armstrong Pame, I.A.S., the Founding Curator of Imphal Hub.

The Global Shapers Community is a network of city-based Hubs developed and led by young leaders between 20 and 30 years old who want to develop their leadership potential towards serving society. To that end, Hubs undertake local projects to improve their communities.

Shapers are highly motivated individuals who have a great potential for future leadership roles in society. They are selected on the basis of their achievements, leadership potential, and commitment to make a difference.

The GSC is one of several multi-stakeholder communities at the World Economic Forum.

Other communities include the Young Global Leaders, the Global Agenda Councils, and the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurs.

MSW students in a fund-raising drive

Share-a-pakoda stall

Share-a-pakoda stall

Azara: People in large numbers participated with great pomp and gaiety in the Community Self-Help Week in support of a social commitment project Swastyayan, organised by faculty, staff and students of social work and mass communication department, Assam Don Bosco University (ADBU).

Flagging off the weeklong event by making and selling the first pakora, Fr. (Dr) Stephen Mavely, Vice-Chancellor, ADBU, said, “This fund raising drive organised to support the educational aspirations of the poor and marginalised children of Azara, Garal and Dharapur gaon panchayats is unique and significant in the context of development in developing countries like India.” Dr Riju Sharma, Director School of Humanities and Social Sciences, ADBU, reiterated, “Making our social commitment programme self- reliant and sustainable is the primary aim of this venture. I am humbled by, and very appreciative of, the commitment and involvement of all the faculty, students and staff who are sacrificing their time and energy in this noble venture. I wish them all the best.”

The highlight of the program has been selling of pakoras, momos and other snacks by MSW students in the past one week in different parts of Guwahati. Car wash, Fun Games and Photo sessions have been the additional fund-raising attractions of the event all throughout.

“In order to give a befitting conclusion to the week-long programme, a grand Food Festival was organised in the premises of Assam Don Bosco University on the 31st January. Different activities like the car wash, games, etc. continued alongside dishing out of unique and mouth-watering cuisines of northeast India,” said Ms.Namita Ekka and Mr.Hebol Borgoary of the MSW Department. “A colourful cultural programme during the evening and the launching of the music band DB hey, in celebration of Saint John Bosco’s feast, closed the day and event,” said Ms. Hazel Wahlang.

It is worth mentioning here that, Swastyayan, meaning a fight to eradicate the ills of our societyis a social commitment project of Assam Don Bosco University; it was started in order to address the need felt by students and faculty of the ADBU to extend a helping hand to the community children around the University. The project initially focused on conducting tutorial classes for the children on the basis of their scholastic needs. In these classes, different subjects, such as, Mathematics, General Sciences, Social Sciences and English are being taught, besides providing inputs on soft skills, career guidance, personality development, etc. Computer Education Programme was another activity which was started in 2014 due to the felt need and requests coming from the community children themselves.

“In the past two remarkable years, the project has been able to support over two hundred children from the neighbouring villages and it has been successfully run with the help of over hundred students and faculty volunteers of the university,” said Fr. Nelanatt, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor. “We extend our warm and sincere invitation to one and all to partake in the events of Swastyayan and bring about change in the lives of vulnerable and marginalised children,” he added.

The Journal of Development Practice Launched

The Journal Home  Page

The Journal Home Page

Azara: The Apostolic Administrator of Jowai and Nobel Peace Prize Nominee-2011 Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil launched ‘The Journal of Development Practice, a peer reviewed international journal of experiences from the field’ an initiative of the Department of Social Work, ADBU at an august gathering of faculty members and students of School of Humanities and Social Sciences, ADBU, 25 September 2014. To go to the journal click here: The Journal of Development Practice

In his address Archbishop Thomas called on the members present to ‘bring intelligence into ones work’ with ‘sense of social responsibility’ while also cautioning that ‘valid ideas may not necessarily lead to development.’

In his message the Vice Chancellor of Assam Don Bosco University states, “conceived as a Journal that will rely on ‘experience’ as the base material for analysis, conclusions and assumptions for effective interventions in the field as well as grist for philosophising, we look forward to this Journal becoming an authoritative voice for practitioners and thinkers alike.”

“The journal aims at providing opportunity to authors who would like to construct knowledge from the FIELD, and contribute towards development in an academic ambiance. Equally important is the accessibility of knowledge to all for free- thus the free access journal,” says journal editor Jacob Islary.

The journal claims to be free open access e-journal, an annual publication with special issues on various themes of interdisciplinary in nature. Besides serious articles, the journal will have sections for views, book reviews, research summaries and field notes.

The hit count jumps to 1616 in 15 hours after launch.

The hit count jumps to 1616 in 15 hours after launch.

To promote “emerging academicians and scholars in the field of development practice’ the journal has developed its own, easy to follow, citation and referencing style called ‘the JDP style of citation and referencing.”

The first volume has 44 pages (A4 size divided into two columns) with six feature articles broadly covering themes of  Public Health, Social Work Education, Methodological Dilemma in Social Research, and Homelessness.

In a span of just over a year, this is the third scientific and peer reviewed international journal, ADBU has brought out starting with Journal of Northeast Indian Cultures, and Journal of Engineering Technology.

UCDVO and ADBU refurbish and hand over four Anganwadis

An Anganwadi in Hatkhwapara before Refurbishment

An Anganwadi in Hatkhwapara before Refurbishment

Azara: The tiny tots of Hatkhwapara, Hirapara and Keotpara need not spend their play and education time anymore surrounded by dull stained walls and broken floors as the members of International Student Volunteer Exchange Programme have refurbished and colourfully painted the Anganwadi centers of the villages and handed them over, 11 July 2014.

‘The objective of the undertaking was to make the learning experience of the children who come to the centers enriching and perhaps in one word what one could call beautiful and effective process’ says Mr. Alex Kelly, a team member from UCDVO and placed in Keotpara.

Expressing her feeling about the transformation of her center Anganwadi Worker Ms. Moni Das of Keotpara said that ‘never in her life had she dreamed that her center would be so beautiful and learning experience of children so colourful.’ ‘I am grateful to the students of Don Bosco and UCDVO for transforming my center into a center of learning’ she added.

The Anganwadi in Hatkhwapara after Refurbishment

An Anganwadi in Hatkhwapara after Refurbishment

Ms. Jyothsna Bagum the Aanganwadi Worker from Hatkhwapara expressing her experience after the refurbishment of her Anganwadi Center said that ‘till last week the community people would not visit the center but now not just community people and forget about the parents of the children who come here; even public passersby are stopping and visiting to see the kind of changes the Anganwadi centre has gone through.’  ‘I am proud of my center’ she adds with a smile.

A break during refurbishment of the Anganwadi at Hirapara

A break during refurbishment of the Anganwadi at Hirapara

Speaking to the members of the team from Don Bosco and UCDVO after the inauguration ceremony Mr. Dipak Kumar Das, Headmaster of Hatkhwapara Lower Primary School expressed his opinion that ‘the Anganwadi Centers which are important in the process of the development of a Child in India could be as colourful, beautiful and child friendly as the newly refurbished Anganwadi of Hatkhwapara.’ ‘It gives immense happiness and sense of satisfaction to know that there are people out there who care and dare to share dreams of making the lives of the children better’ he added.

Anganwadi literally means a ‘Courtyard House’ in Hindi. It is a Government center where children between the age group of 0 to 6 years and expecting mothers are given holistic developmental care by a Government appointed Anganwadi Worker.

Enjoying the comfort of the refurbished Anganwadi Centre

Enjoying the comfort of the refurbished Anganwadi Centre

Four Anganwadi Centres (two in Hatkhwapara, and one each in Hirapara and Keotpara) have been refurbished, inaugurated and handed over to the three communities by the team of volunteers from UCD Volunteers Overseas, Ireland and Don Bosco University. The refurbishing process included scrubbing the walls and floors, repairing the broken walls and floors, white washing, painting and finally fitting linoleum on the floors.

Speaking on the experience of the process of the Anganwadi refurbishing work Ms. Dupphidalin says that ‘she has learnt how to mix cement and sand and may perhaps be able to fix her own house’, while Ms. Namita says that she ‘could perhaps paint her own house as she has discovered the painter-self in her.’

For Ms. Victoire and Mr. John while ‘the cleaning and whitewashing of the centers were the most frustrating, the emerging of trees, animals and rainbows from the once dull walls and beautiful laying of linoleum on the once broken floors were the most satisfying and joyous experience.’

According to Peter ‘the transformation of Hirapara Anganwadi Centre gives happiness with a hope that children who come there can now have more pleasant time.’