BHIKHU VYAS’ NYÅRSHÄLSNING
Bhikhu Vyas har i 30 år varit Tyresö Ulands- och FredsFörenings (Tuff) främsta partner i Indien, där han och hans medarbetare på ett beundransvärt sätt förvaltat pengarna från Tuff, vilka därför har räckt till förbluffande mycket: Många skolor, hundratals brunnar, 90 000 mangoträd och mycket annat.
De senaste åren har projekten koncentrerats till Dharampur, ett bergigt område i delstaten Gujarat, ca 25 mil norr om Mumbai (Bombay). Där finns ett par hundra små byar, bebodda av tribals, de fattigaste av de fattiga.
LET OUR FRIENDSHIP & MESSAGE OF LOVE GROW IN 2009
All of us wish the listeners of Radio Tuff and other colleagues, a peaceful and pleasant New Year. The 'March' in Dharampur is well in a take - off stage. Our schools, generously supported by Swedish Sister Schools and nicely coordianted by Tuff are like spring - boards for community development. We will like to congratulate Radio Tuff in particular, as a voice of peace, a pre condition for progress and justice. If we take into account pre - Dharampur decade, around 25 schools got support from Swedish Sister Schools: A land - mark [totals three decades now in 2009] of unique cooperation, between two NGOS : TUFF and VPSS .
2008 was a record, having the highest ever support for schools from Tuff. With an addition of one more high school in 2008, along with a hostel for Gymnasium Girls; we now have 9 educational units as well as a Mobile van, trying to upgrade educational standard of 8 village primary schools. The Mass Marriages [82 in 2008 & 100 on way in 2009] and the Vocational Training Program for school drop - outs are 2 mile - stones of 2008, in our journey for progress. Only last month, 50 first batch trainees gathered in the Girls' Hostel and chalked out self employment - livelihood program. 20 youngsters have got sewing machines and other tools, to start their jobs, at their door steps. A massive vocational training for jobs for 250 youths on pattern as above will be implemented in 2009. An experiment is under way with 100 families to take second crop [not rain-fed] may be mentioned as a new project of 2008 - 2009. A plan to repair about 300 existing check - dams is being implemented and will be continued in 2009. 6500 mango saplings were planted in 2008. Our plans are to cross 100000 mark in 2009. This plan has been exclusively and constantly supported by Tuff since 1992, as a priority demand from people. It is a practical, sustainable and eco-friendly livelihood program, at the door - steps of the community. The students of our schools are encouraged to grow more plants, with the help of their parents. They get the message in the annual Guardians’ Meets. This is an innovative program, to link schools and community. A re - housing program in Dharampur Block replacing old huts, requiring repeated repairs is on the cards, as a new venture in 2009.
Not only India, but the whole world - including the developed countries is passing through unprecedented crisis today. If we aspire a new social order - A CHANGE - all of us will have to become change agents. I hope, we will rise to the challenge ahead, in 2009.
Every poor person at some stage is a risk for the rich