Celebrating Joy of Giving Week – 2014

In view of the “Daan Utsav” our champions are visiting a tribal village, Chinnur Colony in Kodaikanal district on 18th Oct 2014. During this visit we are interacting with around 25 children to understand their problems and see how we can help them in their education. As part of our trip we are collecting used clothes for the above mentioned children. We kindly request you to donate any used clothes for the children aged between 5 to 15 years and we will be happy to deliver it on behalf of you!

Please contact the below volunteers for Chennai drop-off:

Bhaskar K –  9600100205 (Arumbakkam)

Krishna Prasad – 9840770156 (Mogappair)

Shanmugan – 9444505152 (Maduravoyal)

If anyone outside of Chennai wish to donate, please courier it to our office address: Aalayam Foundation No.114/3, Ponniamman Koil Street, Sri Mahalakshmi Nagar, Numbal, Chennai, India – 600077 For any questions, please contact us at 044-32000780 or info@aalayam.org

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Now accepting credit/debit card and net banking

On our 1st anniversary, we are very proud to announce that from now supporters can donate to the cause using your credit/debit card or net banking. This feature was requested by many supporters and it will help our supporters to donate quickly and seamlessly. With this update when a payment is successfully supporters can see their payment information immediately.

We have partnered with PayUMoney to process payments online and currently integrated their PayU button. As a payment processor they charge us a percentage (approx. 2.5 to 3%) of every single transaction as service fee to process payments online. As per 100% to beneficiary policy, Aalayam team is going pay the service fee on behalf of the donors.

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Tamil Nadu Science Forum (TNSF) – My Experience

One of Aalayam’s volunteer and also Vazhai organization’s volunteer Mrs.Thamarai Selvi informed Aalayam about the “Tamil Nadu Science Forum (TNSF)” gathering which had happened in Chennai on September  21st.

Since I was in Chennai that day I had an opportunity to participated on behalf of Aalayam Foundation.

It was a wonderful experience.

Tamil Nadu Science Forum (TNSF) conducted the programs from morning to evening that day.

Lot of wonderful people have participated in the event and the energy was high till the evening sessions.

Hats off to all the members of Tamil Nadu Science Forum (TNSF) and other volunteers.

They gave us an opportunity to speak about Aalayam.

In Summary I had talked about What Aalayam does and How do we operate.

After the meeting I spoke with a school headmaster gave our information and also talked to an employee of child labor prevention welfare organization who are doing a wonderful job is that space also given our information so that we both can work together towards the common goals of providing education for the people who are not fortunate as we are.

End of the day this meet once again stresses the importance of NGO’s working together so that each others mission’s can be achieved with support from one another.

Tamil Nadu Science Forum (TNSF): http://www.tnsfchennai.com

Tamil Nadu Science Forum (TNSF) Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chennaitnsf

Compiled some thoughts on Education

Provide safety for the Kids. For example, Look at how many kids are being kidnapped, travel to schools in unsafe environment, etc.,   The enrollments will go up if parents know that their kids are safe. Revolutionize the education system from Linear, conformity, Industrial model to Organic or Agricultural model by providing the right kind of environment so that students can blossom according to their capabilities. Everyone has their own time to blossom. – Quotes from “Ken Robinson – Ted Talk”   Survey the public find out the top 10 issues by district & State and address them. One size may not fit all.   Execute the existing schemes without corruption.   TV content regulations. Too much violence, non suitable contents for kids delivered through Television. Programs in the evening to be censored to suit children. Teach Soft skills in school curriculum.   Include more sports, Quiet time (Know yourself).

Train the Teachers to encourage students for creativity & Innovation. Train the teachers frequently.

Creativity is as important as Literacy – Designing the syllabus based on this theme will help students to know their full potential. Education should not be a competition. School ranking system needs to be overhauled. Students come to school first time joyfully, the system divides them says only top 5 or 10 are fit for the society. What about the rest?

Ken Robinson – Ted Talkshttp://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_says_schools_kill_creativityhttp://www.ted.com/talks/sir_ken_robinson_bring_on_the_revolution#t-1045545Jiddu Krishnamurtihttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LS_ajJffPI

1st Champions meet in Chennai

Our 1st Champions meet held at Chennai on 23-08-2014.

Agenda:

  • Introduction from everyone
  • Discussed about our recent experience
  • Discussed about our review process
  • Discussed about the problem students face today

Highlights:

  1. Decided to apply for 80G tax exemption, so donors can get tax exemption for the donation amount.
  2. Integrate credit card payment gateway, so donors can seamlessly donate to the cause.
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Protect the Identity and give pride to our Beneficiaries
Aalayam is committed to protect the identity and give pride to our beneficiaries with all of your support.

It’s important that we respect the privacy of the beneficiary by not disclosing their personal identifiable information on the public website.

Aalayam does the review of all personal information of the beneficiary in very detail to find the genuinity of the cause.

We don’t want to publicize the situation of our beneficiaries and raise funds.

We all know that the beneficiaries have not chosen to live in the conditions and their inabilities to pay the fees. They are not responsible for the conditions in which they are in now.

We all also know that these conditions are temporary in nature and they will be in a very good positions once they have completed their education and grown up.

As a transparent organization we are committed to provide all the relevant information by providing you with the evidence by emailing the copy of the cheques given to institutions and or beneficiaries.

Also as an registered organization we also maintain and submit documents to the government for auditing.

Thanks a lot Donor’s and everyone for your deep understanding on this and the support you are providing.
How are we able to give 100 percent to beneficiary

Few people asked us this question and we thought to explain the way it works today.

It’s Simple Though!

The goal of our organization is to identify deserving students and use crowdfunding to raise funds from supporters. Beneficiary approach us directly or referred to us for financial help to continue or purse school or college education. Our review committee investigate the cause to know the complete background. Once the cause is approved we share the cause to supporters through our website, facebook, email etc. Supporters with generously donate to the cause.

It is very important that whatever donation we receive from the supporters should go to the beneficiary 100%. Once the goal is reached, we are directly pay it to the educational institute or service provider and ask for receipts. We DO NOT write cheque or demand draft to the beneficiary or parents.

As any organization we do have monthly operating cost and we try to keep it very minimal as possible, so that we can serve many student. Our monthly cost includes office rent, phone bill, stationary, web hosting etc. Our champions are contributing in many ways as website development, graphics design, cause review, user support, accounting, tax filing etc.

Currently we have three core members pledge monthly and that covers our operating cost. In near future we are planning to integrate payment gateway, so that supporters can donate seamlessly. There is a service charge (2-5%) given to the payment processing company and we would like to observe that cost with our monthly operating cost. To cover this service charge we will increase the number of monthly pledge amount.

At any cost we WILL NOT take any single amount from the cause donation and give 100% donations to the beneficiary’s cause which makes us different!

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Giving is Living

What can we Give?

We have come with Nothing. So we cannot Give.

We made products from needles to computers from of our mother earth and made money made out of these.

We have received everything from this planet, from Sun light, Water, Food, etc., to Oxygen for our living.

So what can we give?

Since we cannot really give anything, Shall we Share?

Let’s do that. Let’s give what we have received, which is not even ours, with the people who are in need.

This is one way of Living.

It’s not even Giving it’s just Living.

Process of learning
Learning is not a Competition.

The beauty in this world is everything in unique. Why to compare with one another? Comparison will make you dull. In comparing you are restricting yourself to a small group of people in your class. Remember, there are many schools and many students. Learn without comparing with anyone. Learn to know for yourself. In this way, you don’t learn to get better than someone else but you want to really understand what it is. At that instance you will see the beauty of it. That’s when you will reach you own highest potential without any comparisons and compulsions to learn.

The process of learning is no comparison.

Learning is a process, there is no end even after coming out of the school or college. When you learn from a book which is written by someone that process itself shows that someone is sharing their knowledge with you, same goes true in a class room when someone is teaching, or from your parents who taught us so many things and also from the nature etc., This list goes on and on …..

The process of learning is sharing.

So many teachers, individuals, people around us have shared their knowledge with us selflessly. Otherwise we wouldn’t be where we are now. If we think about this, who is educating you and me? Everyone in this world, right. Please keep your ears open, the world itself is a school. Don’t restrict yourself to the walls of the school. Use your learning to make the world a better place to live by contributing to the well being of human beings, nature etc., That’s the gratitude we show to our teachers. Someone shared the following quote sometime ago which I learned and remembered till now  “Light never ends, from candle to candle and soul to soul”. The light here is the knowledge. Share your knowledge.