Chancellor of ADBU elected president of skill training umbrella body – India

THomas_20120519.jpgBangalore: President of the Conference of Religious India (CRI) Father V.M. Thomas has been elected president of a church-based Non Governmental Organization.

The Functional Vocational Training and Research Society (FVTRS), a broad framework for vocational training for the benefit of the unorganized sector in India, was instituted by Misereor, a German funding organization.

It comprises directors of leading NGOs engaged in social engineering such as Caritas, SKIP (Skills for Progress), Indo Global Social Service Society (IGSS) and other professional bodies.

The CRI is the national body of more than 1,000 major superiors of Catholic religious in India. It has more than 140,000 members.

Father Thomas is the founder of institutions– Don Bosco Institute and Don Bosco Institute of Management under Assam Don Bosco University (ADBU) at Kharguli (Guwahati).

Over the years some 9,000 youth were trained and employed by DBI; 1,700 Below Poverty Line youth were trained in driving, weaving, embroidery and animal husbandry; 50,000 youth trained in soft skills and leadership for democratic living and participation; 3,500 government school teachers empowered to give quality education to rural youth as well as 1,000 Government School Principals were trained at Gov’s request.

Chancellor of ADBU Father Thomas, 66, an educationist and social worker for the past 40 years, has been helping thousands of Assam’s violence-hit children pick up the pieces of their life and join the mainstream society.

He is also founder director of Child Friendly Guwahati a civil society movement to re-habilitate street children.

Education and skill development has been the guiding principle of this Harvard graduate, Fr Thomas who teaches IAS / IPS cadres at the elite Lal Bahadur Shastri Academy in Mussoorie.

Speaking to Matters India soon after his election Fr Thomas said, “my dream is to empower many more deprived, unemployed, unreached, marginalized and vulnerable youth.”

Guwahati Salesian Provincial Fr V.M. Thomas who was unanimously elected president at FVTRS General Body meeting held in Bangalore, 17 March said, “This is an additional responsibility with major challenges to [help] grow the organisation and ensure bigger outreach and impact.”

Archbishop William D’Souza of Patna proposed Father Thomas for the post and FVTRS treasurer Father Peter Brank seconded the nomination.

Since 1993, FVTRS has teamed up with similar professional bodies in training some 120,000 disadvantaged youth; educated another 10,000 youth through the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS).

FVTRS now has several new initiatives like SKILL NET with some 50,000 members working in 20 states of India with the sole aim of making disadvantaged youth employable.

In less than 25 years of its founding FVTRS has successfully implemented 963 projects across 20 states of India with the collaboration of about 150 partners.

Fr Thomas underlined the fact that “a major skill development agency [FVTRS] has focused on drop out and marginalized youth in most unreached areas of Kashmir, Jharkhand, and Odisha’s most undeveloped district of Kalahandi.”

More than 50 percent FVTRS beneficiaries are women.

By CM Paul for Matters India (Except for the title the story has not been edited).

ADBU celebrate Women’s Day

IMG_20170308_081612.jpgSonapur: The students and faculty of the Schools of Humanities and Social Sciences, and Life Sciences, ADBU, Sonapur campus celebrated the International Women’s Day today 8th March 2017. The celebration began with a rally (songs and slogans) from Kamarkuchi market to the academic building at 7.30 am. It ended with a speech delivered in keeping with the theme of the day “Women in the Changing World of Work: Planet 50-50 by 2030” by one of the students of Social Work at the academic building.

The men members wished all women in the campus on the occasion.

ADBU launches Centre for Developmental Studies and Initiatives

Sonapur: The University, in its effort to carry forward its vision of being a catalytic agent to bring about progress and development to its neighbouring villages, launched its ‘Centre for Developmental Studies and Initiatives’ at an interactive meeting held with the leaders of local communities on 23 February, 2017 at Crystal Hall, Tapesia Campus.

Addressing the gathering of 78 people, including Panchayat Presidents, Village Headmen, School Teachers, Anganwadi Workers, Self Help Group members, students and staff volunteers, the Vice Chancellor Fr. (Dr) Stephen Mavely explained why the University takes such a step, “Opening this Centre is to formalize what we have been doing in bits and pieces during the last five years or so. This is a seminal gathering to bring about a participatory approach in our interactions and interventions with our neighbours. The university alone cannot work for the development of the communities but we would like to work together with you to see developments in the community in education, health and standard of living. The ‘Centre for Developmental Studies and Initiatives’ will become a hub for study, research and developmental activities as a regular feature of our university. My hope is that every graduate in our university will spend some quality time in volunteering for developmental work in the villages of North-East India as a compulsory part of their studies with us. This Centre will start organizing that as we go along.”

Mr. Surjya Das, President, Digaru Goan Panchayat expressed his gratitude for the existence of the university and said that he is looking forward to working together with the University’s various developmental initiatives.

Discussions were held on issues and challenges being faced by these communities in water supply, electricity, road, alcohol abuse, lack of infrastructure for social institutions, and disintegration of Government Assamese Medium Schools.

Earlier in 2015 and 2016, the Department of Social Work, ADBU in collaboration with University College Dublin Volunteers Overseas, Ireland had organized a one month Community Development Programme in partnership with local communities in these communities. Some of the project activities included repair of a well, capacity building workshops for livelihood development, English classes, and refurbishment of Anganwadis.

ADBU opens admissions …


Sonapur/Azara: Assam Don Bosco University, Sonapur and Azara campuses have opened its admissions to various under-graduate and post-graduate programmes. One may login in the link and follow the necessary instructions.

Identity crisis

As published in assamtimes, 15 Dec 2016: North East still remains a distant place for a section Delhities even after so much alleged hue and cry of the racial discrimination. This has, beyond doubt, proved again when a group comprising a teacher and students from Guwahati were disallowed from visiting the Taj Mahal recently.

Talking to Assam Times, Jacob Islary said that he and his students were not allowed for an entry into the heritage place during the recent educational tour from Assam Don Bosco University in Guwahati.

According to the varsity faculty member, they were prevented at the gates raising doubts over the nationality and asked for valid documents. But the gate officials refused to accept the student identity cards. “What was more bizarre was the non acceptance of the Scheduled Tribe Certificates of a few students who do not have other government cards,” said the assistant professor.

‘It was a humiliating experience for all of us. Some of the students do not have government identity cards but have other documents – like the Caste Certificate given by competent government authority but they were not accepted. What was even more humiliating was an access to entry given to a few students only after answering a few interview questions posed by a security guard at the entry gate. I hope that the Archaeological Survey of India educates its staff on realities of diversity in India’ said Mr. Jacob Islary from Agra who is still with the team of students.

Mr Jacob Islary was himself allowed entry to Taj Mahal only after he demanded for a written explanation from the staff for reasons on denial of entry.

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