Tag Archives: Non-profit

Sankara Eye Foundation presents “Klose To My Life”

A  fundraiser concert to eradicate curable blindness in India

Sankara Eye Foundation is bringing the Magnificent Musical Extravaganza of the year.  Legendary singers Sonu Nigam & Neha Kakkar with Live Symphony Orchestra of 45 Musicians at the beautiful Oracle Arena on June 15th. All this is for a magical cause of brightening this world. Your entertainment will help someone’s dreams come true as they get their eyesight restored.

Sonu Nigam & Neha Kakkar Concert

June 15, 2019 

7:30 pm

Oracle Arena, Oakland

Tickets starting at $39

Tickets available at www.giftofvision.org/events

For more information, visit www.giftofvision.org or call 1 (866) Sankara.

Established in the Bay Area, SEF is a non-profit organization that has been working for the past twenty years for the cause of eradicating curable blindness in India. Driven by the truly inspirational cause, SEF has currently established 9 community hospitals and soon embarking on three new hospital projects. By far the most unique and remarkable characteristic of SEF is that they provide free eye care for those unable to afford it, those members of the rural poor, and this accounts for 80 percent—which is approximately 200,000 people per year—of the surgeries performed at their hospitals. The tireless efforts by the SEF team since inception, has enabled 1.95 million eyes to receive the gift of vision, utterly free of cost.  Also, it has maintained the top rating from Charity Navigator for sound fiscal management for seven years

SEF will focus its fundraising activities for 3 new projects, Focus Mumbai, Focus Hyderabad and Focus Indore.  Become a Founding Donor and leave a legacy – get your name on the Wall of Founders. Double the impact of your gift with company matching. Join our cause, volunteer and share in the joy of bringing light to someone’s eyes. Please visit our website at www.giftofvision.org for more details.

 

This article was provided to India Currents by Sankara Eye Foundation

Walkathon/ 5k, 10K run and Half Marathon Om Run

Spring is a season that is referred to as the time for the rebirth of ideas, rejuvenation, renewal, resurrection, and regrowth.

May 6th Om Run hosted in Vasona Park offered an opportunity for over 1800 people of the Bay Area to mingle in a 5K, 10K run, and half marathon allowing for socializing and having a family fun-filled day of activities together.

Hosted by Chinmaya Mission, which was established in India in 1953 by devotees of the world-renowned Vedanta teacher, His Holiness Swami Chinmayananda.  Guided by his vision, devotees all around the world formed the nucleus of a spiritual renaissance movement that now encompasses a wide range of spiritual, educational, and charitable activities, ennobling the lives of thousands in India and across its borders. Presently, headed by His Holiness Swami Swaroopananda, the Mission is administered by Central Chinmaya Mission Trust (CCMT) in Mumbai, India. Under his guidance, the Mission has continued mushrooming across the globe and stands today with over 300 centers worldwide.

Chinmaya Mission San Jose is one of them.

Swami Bodhatmananda Ji planted the OM Run seed in 2010, and since then it has germinated into a full-bloomed event year after year. Thanks to the fervor and zeal of over 200 volunteers who get an opportunity to serve in the event alongside with the Chinmaya Yuva Kendra (CHYK) our young adult members who are graduates of our Bala Vihar program.

Om Run has training sessions helping people and children train for the run prior to the big day that hosts a large outdoors “fair” (with rides, games, food stalls and other family-friendly activities). The organized event attracts Bay Area professionals from different fields. As a sponsor (depending upon the level of sponsorship), they get a booth at the event, a color advertisement in a professionally printed booklet that is handed out to each family that is registered and attends. The logo is also imprinted on the event T-shirt that is given to each registrant and of course, multiple shout-outs by the MCs of the event.  This avenue allows the sponsors to market and publicize their products and services while gaining leverage in the large south Asian community.

This run not only brings the Chinmaya Mission Family together but also encourages people of all clan to become health conscious as they renew, resurrect for the year.

Funds raised from OM Run are shared by several local and international charities like CORD (Chinmaya Organization for Rural Development), St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, American Diabetes Association, PACE (Pacific Autism Center for Education), where we support children with autistic challenges and Friends of Independent Networks (FINS), a local nonprofit helping an adult program to assist developmentally disabled individuals.

Chinmaya Mission in San Jose has many programs that involve a five-year-old to a senior citizen.

  •    Bala Vihar — to help children bloom, grow and inculcate values through fun-filled activities. Bala Vihar enhances the overall development of the personality of a child at all levels — physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual.  Bhagwad Gita lectures are offered at no cost while Bal Vihar is in session.
  •    Chinmaya Yuva Kendra (CHYK) is a global youth wing of Chinmaya Mission. It aims to empower youth with the vision, values, and dynamism for success in all fields. CHYK conducts weekly classes where young people are made aware of their potential through the study of scriptures.
  •    Chinmaya Study group involves five to fifteen people who meet at a mutually agreed time, place and day for about ninety minutes each week. The group studies and discusses scriptural texts according to a prescribed syllabus that offers the seeker a systematic exposure to Vedanta.

We are observing increased participation as these programs provide an excellent platform for individuals to learn and get involved wholeheartedly. By maintaining an environment of encouragement, tolerance, and humility, Chinmaya Mission enables personal and spiritual growth of an individual and families.

By turning our attention away from our differences and working for a common goal, we slowly inch our way to see the Oneness in all of us. Events such as Om Run allow a seeker and sevak (volunteer) to turn attention from individual differences and work for a common goal, slowly inching to see the Oneness in all. The beauty here is that as one gets more involved, more internal subtle transformations will be reflected and experienced by an individual and people around them.

As Swami Bodhatmananda Ji says, “We need to understand that we will not always have control over external situations but we still have the choice of controlling our mind and responding to the circumstances appropriately. So, we must learn to manage our mind. This is possible by transforming our vision and perspective of life. Every situation in life should be seen as an opportunity to evolve, and then being becomes a beautiful adventure. Challenges and frustrations are part and parcel of life. We may not be successful in every venture we undertake. The fallacy is that we define success in a certain way in our mind, and we bind our happiness to that mindset. We become disappointed if we don’t achieve what we had defined as success. However, it is only through our mistakes do we learn and improve. The right thing is to keep this knowledge available and alive with us all the time as much as possible.”

Spring is the season of new beginnings. Let’s embrace this opportunity to bring a change within and around us.

For more information about Chinmaya Mission San Jose and its local activities look up: cmsj.org

 

Silicon Valley Forum’s 2018 Visionary Awards

On May 17th, 2018, Silicon Valley Forum’s annual Visionary Awards returns for its illustrious 21st year—four of Silicon Valley’s brightest stars and leading founders will take the stage in celebration of their achievements, work, and contributions to Silicon Valley’s renowned business and technology ecosystem. The Visionary Awards invite the Valley’s thriving community—from up-and-coming entrepreneurs to lifelong company leaders, from seasoned investors to service providers—to come together for this singularly inspiring evening. The 2018 Visionary Awards will be held at Domenico Winery in San Carlos, California.

The 2018 Visionary Award recipients are:

  • Kimberly Bryant– Founder and CEO, Black Girls Code; visionary entrepreneur and speaker
  • Caterina Fake– Cofounder, Flickr and Hunch; author, entrepreneur, and angel investor
  • Astro Teller– Entrepreneur, scientist, and author; Captain of Moonshots, X
  • Vivek Wadhwa– Author, entrepreneur, and Carnegie Mellon Fellow

“Every year at our annual Visionary Awards, we look forward to the opportunity to celebrate the absolute best of the best of Silicon Valley—the leaders whose work is synonymous with what makes this region so magnetic,” said Denyse Cardozo, Silicon Valley Forum CEO. “We’re proud to invite the Valley to join us this year as we celebrate the achievements of this extraordinary group.”

Tickets are available at the event page both individually and in tables of 8 for attendees who want to enjoy a shared client or team experience. The evening begins at 6 pm with a wine reception, followed by a seated dinner and speeches from each of the Visionary honorees. Cocktail attire is encouraged.

At Silicon Valley Forum, we believe in the transformative power of entrepreneurship. We’ve dedicated the last 35 years to helping people learn how to build a business the Silicon Valley way, with a focus on creativity and innovation, using technology to bring society towards a better future. Whether you’re trying to create a company here or build your own Silicon Valley at home, our events and our online portal light the way for you to learn and grow as a 21st century entrepreneur.

Throughout our 35-year history, we’ve created thousands of successful events, programs, and conferences that educate, train, inspire and connect technologists, entrepreneurs, corporates, investors, innovation and startup hubs, and students—in Silicon Valley, throughout the U.S., and globally. We organize over 70 different activities per year, have over 20,000 subscribers/users, and work with over 40 countries worldwide.

Our partners include global leaders like Accenture, IBM, Microsoft, Mercer, and SAP, just to name a few, as well as leading venture capital firms and service providers. Silicon Valley Forum is a fully independent 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization.

For more information, visit our website at http://www.siliconvalleyforum.com.

After Twenty Years I Was In India For Holi And I Wished I Was Back In The Bay

Time traveling back to the water balloon exploding streets of childhood: Every Holi I would turn into a general, training my own army in water balloon strategy. Every spring my sons and their friends would be taken to a different local Holi celebration in the Bay Area – Sunnyvale temple, Fremont temple, Asha, RANA.

Strategic use of color ensure a prolonged victory. As the day progresses only traces of color remain in the little plastic pouches in the hand. Wily teenagers “borrow” color from little ones who clutch, rather than use their color stash. While adults strategize on conquering the food line, my boys and I unroll our holi war strategy. Hapless individuals who could be gheraoed and smothered with color are targeted. Spotless entrants into the field of war are the most fun to color. Using the victim’s powder to color them is a flag signaling ultimate victory.

One year a teenage girl approached a 4-year-old lieutenant, “Can I have some color?” she asked while her friends looked on hopefully. “Sure,” said my warrior, “Here you go!” as a cloud of red green and yellow rose around her. He made me proud.

Compare this to Holi in India: deserted streets, girls cowering inside, and children on a nearby balcony with a tub full of water balloons waiting in vain for a hapless victim. Bay Area holi celebrations promise an explosive street party with blasts of music, color-intoxicated dancers, food, and laughter. Twenty years ago as we left the Holi grounds and rolled into the nearest Burger King quizzical stares from customers followed us. Now when they see green, yellow, red and blue faces framed in car windows, the other cars on the road roll down their windows and shout “Holi !!” and nod their heads excitedly..

Featured Image by Snap Yourself! Photo Booth 2015

Ritu Marwah is the features editor at India Currents magazine. Her love for Holi is matched by her enthusiasm for life.