Community Service
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On their own volition, students and teachers of the university work with local communities around the campuses. Many of these service activities are conceived and inspired by students themselves. They are a reflection of the impact of the unique education they receive here. Examples of these from the academic year 2016/17 include:
Anantapur Campus, once a month
As per the tradition of the campus for the past several years, regular Narayana Seva was undertaken on a monthly basis during the academic year.
he activity includes the preparation of 25 Kg. of Pulihora rice by the campus workers. Once cooked, students then pack the Pulihora into packets of around 250-300 grams each. An average of 270-300 packets are prepared each Narayana Seva. These are arranged in crates which are then loaded onto the hostel auto rickshaw.
Usually, four students accompanied by a faculty member or a doctoral research scholar distribute the rice in the slums around town. This allows students to experience first hand, the conditions of people with marginal resources and fills their hearts with an urge to continue to do such work to derive selfless joy, which seva alone can grant them.
Anantapur Campus, 1986 to date
Dr. (Miss) Kiron Bala Arora, Associate Professor in Hindi, along with the help of students and alumni, has adopted a leper colony since 1986 with a long-term objective of making the families as self-sufficient as possible.
Love Stream has helped transform the lives of twenty-five socially marginalized families through dedicated love and care. The families are financially self-sufficient through a series of interventions including raising capital for water pumps, growing trees, selling their fruits, etc.
This year, the talented and skilled children of the colony made various handicrafts like birthday and new years cards, bookmarks, rakhis, pouches and friendship bands during their free time. They are then sold to other students who wait to buy them as they are cheaper, available at hand and prepared by their friends to benefit the poor lepers and are beautiful.
Muddenahalli Campus, Christmas 2016
The students of the campus went as Good Samaritans on Christmas morning and handed over little gifts to the tiny tots at a nearby Muddenahalli village. This happened towards the end of the candle light nagar sankeertan that wound its way from the campus into the village. Seeing the joy of pure innocence with large on the faces of the children was a happy experience for all the students.
Muddenahalli Campus, April 2016
Similar to the past few years, the students of all classes along with staff, visited the Sai Dwarakamayee Vriddhashrama, an old age home housing about forty residents—old men and women—at Sultanpet, Nandi village, about four kilometres from Muddenahalli.
The visits were scheduled once a month. Students understood the importance of respecting elders and giving love and care to parents. They conducted bhajans and vedam chanting before commencing their interaction with the residents.
Brindavan Campus, April-May 2017
The Sai Bandhan domiciliary outreach program is a collaboration between students of Brindavan Campus, SSSIHL and Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences (SSSIHMS), Whitefield, Bangalore.
During their summer vacation, students voluntarily set out to meet patients who had been previously treated at SSSIHMS, Whitefield. The objective was to assure the patients and their families of Sai’s continued concern for their well-being and get feedback about their experience at SSSIHMS.
In 2017, the third year of the program, as many as 86 students from 64 districts volunteered to visit 200-odd patients across fifteen states and a union territory. The patients visited belonged to different sections of society. They were of diverse caste, creed, religion, age groups and economic strata.
All patient information was provided by SSSIHMS and the logistical support to meet them was extended by members of Sri Sathya Sai Seva organisation in the state concerned.
Students were able to experience, first hand, the love that the patients and their families have for Bhagawan Baba. From a bleak future, Bhagawan had turned around their lives and made them look forward to a happy and healthy future.
The Sai Bandhan program reminded students that the world is one big family and instilled in them the feeling of brotherhood of man and the fatherhood of God. This message was brought home movingly to one student when the family of a patient he had visited during the holidays came all the way to Brindavan to meet him in the hostel in the month of June 2017. Truly, his holidays were holy days!
Brindavan Campus, 16-17 April 2017
A group of thirty students of the I and II year undergraduate and I year postgraduate programmes took up this service activity.
Several activities were undertaken. For example, Sai Deep, a device using a soda bottle and chlorinated water sealed in it to refract sunlight into the dark rooms of the tiled houses of the villagers. These solar water bulbs can transmit enough light as a 40- to 60-watt incandescent bulb to the interior of village homes and can last up to five years.
Other seva activities included giving away health kits, daily essentials and stationery for the school children. In addition to this, students painted their roofs and the school building.
Education is rendered noble when the spirit of service is inculcated.
Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
© Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, Vidyagiri, Prasanthi Nilayam - 515 134, India.