Peruse, ponder, connect, act.
It was in 1990 that I first played Golf on the Bolarum Course in Secunderabad. A youngster around 10 years ran towards my car and requested me to take him as my Caddie. Initially it irked me to hire a child for my entertainment, but looking around I found that the children of similar age group were pulling the carts of other golfers. His name was Muin and he was my constant companion on the golf course. In 1993 I left Secunderabad and returned in 2003. I met Muin on the golf course and without any hesitation allowed him to pull my golf cart. Muin was now around 23 years and he had remained a caddie not out of choice but from compulsion. He had dropped out after 6th class and his sole job was as a caddie earning a pittance to supplement his parent’s income. This is true not for Muin alone but also of many others not only on the golf course but elsewhere in other fields in most part of the country. As we are aware that the school dropout rates both in urban and rural areas is phenomenal. They are God’s forgotten children who have sacrificed their life’s ambition and purpose to meet immediate basic needs. Their life is one long journey with no direction, static and withering. During this journey they get tempted to vices, become alcoholics and succumb to fatal ailments. I have witnessed a few who died in the prime of their lives. This did make me think.
Vidya (education) Trust is the outcome of my self-introspection and self-flagellation; having received so much, to return in a small and meaningful measure. The Trust will concentrate on children of poor families who have dropped out from school as Muin did. The trust proposes initially to identify such families and then identify persons who are willing to take care of the school expenses of the children and also give stipends to the parents so as to compensate the earnings of the children who leave their employments. The expenses would depend on the fees and other costs charged by the School to which the child is admitted and the revenue loss occurred by him on leaving the job.
The Trust will be an open book for those who adopt the families. A direct communication link between the donors and receiver will always function. Initially the Trust will concentrate in ensuring admission of the children to decent schools and in the long run it proposes to open classes 5th to 7th and thereafter higher ones.
Vidya Trust was registered on 10th April and in line with the cliché ‘charity begins at home’ self and our three children have been identified as donors, the search for the recipients is in progress.
For those who may like to know further the broad objects of the Trust are given below.
a) To aid by giving Scholarships, Donations, Fees, Stipends, or otherwise to the deserving and poor meritorious students for their studies, training, research, higher education etc. in India and abroad irrespective of their caste, color, creed or religion.
b) To establish professorships, lectureships and to give scholarships and prizes or any other similar help or encouragement for the advancement of education and research.
c) To spread the knowledge and education by the publication of books, classics and other literature and / or any establishment of specific endowments or memorials for educational and public charitable purposes.
d) To establish and / or contribute to educational and cultural institutions, colleges, schools, libraries, book trusts, reading rooms, technical institutions, research and development institutes and other public charitable institutions or societies.
e) To hold and promote education, learning including primary, higher and college education – Technical, Non-Technical, agriculture, engineering, medical, commercial, scientific, philosophical or any other subjects in schools, college and / or other higher institutions or organizations.
f) To provide for relief of the poor and in particular to help incapacitated persons in poor and destitute circumstances, needy widows, by giving doles in money or in kind, free food and the like.
g) To take steps to disseminate scientific, technical and cultural knowledge and to raise the standard of life and health among the poor and backward sections of the people.
h) To conduct lectures, seminars, symposiums on all subjects and to award Scholarships, prizes or trophies for and achievement of the above objects and to establish funds for the benefit of minorities and economically weaker sections of the people.
l) To contribute or donate to any benevolent or charitable purposes and to establish funds thereof.
j) To give monetary aid or other help for natural calamities like floods, cyclone, tempest earthquake or otherwise.
k) To get published or help in the publication of books, periodicals and journals of general public utility and to distribute it freely or as prizes or at subsidized prices or otherwise.
l) For the advancement of any other subject of general public utility, and advancement of science and technology and acquisition of higher knowledge.
m) To own, construct or take on lease or hire lands, buildings or premises or vehicles or any other movable or immovable assets to facilitate the objects of the trust.
n) To do all such things as may be necessary, conducive for the advancement of the objects above mentioned.
o) The funds of the Trust shall be applied for the aforesaid objects or for higher studies and acquirement of knowledge and technology in India and abroad.
We seek the blessings of the Almighty and your best wishes to move the ‘Trust’ forward.