SHAMA, Inc. A nonprofit 501(c)3 organization
Jagdish Chander
2460 Crescent Court, Plover WI 54467  (715) 341-1538
woman with kids
Woman with kids (goats) from ShamaWell

SHAMA, Inc. Annual Report 2006-07
Local work || In India || Mhaskal Village

In Gratitude

We are still feeling sorrowful of the sudden passing away on March 2, '07 of Dr. Kameshwar Razdan, the treasurer of SHAMA, Inc.

We thank our retiring Board of Directors Ron Strege, Dr Bal Sridhar, and Jenifer Ebel. SHAMA, Inc. members are very grateful to each of these wonderful Board members who helped in many ways make SHAMA, Inc. a successful organization.

Ron has given SHAMA, Inc. a home in the UWSP multicultural office, a website in the multicultural department and all the support from his office for our diversity education and enrichment of our community.

Sridhar helped in developing SHAMA, Inc.’s mission statement, presenting workshops at the Festival of India for all these years, and being a wonderful Emcee.  His family support and his advice at the Board meetings are highly appreciated. We wish his mom a speedy recovery from this episode of ill health.

Jenifer and her Yoga Studio have been the backbone of the Festival of India and all other Shama programs. Jenifer promoted SHAMA, Inc. work in all her classes. She presented Yoga workshops at the Festival every year. The first micro loan was sponsored by one of her classes.  We wish her all well in her new phase of life.

We heartily thank Linda Pluke for doing outstanding job of publicity and other promotional activities for SHAMA, Inc., and co-coordinator of Festival of India. She creates and mails almost 800 letters of invitation and reserve the date each year, getting insurance for festival. The success of the Festival is not possible without her dedicated hard work. Ron Strege's support is indispensable for smooth running of the annual event.  

Many thanks to Steve Bartelt for being the Registered agent, for working on the ShamaKids subcommittee & SHAMA, Inc.’s Executive Committee.  He diligently mailed out the ShamaKids renewal letters every quarter and the kids’ letters and thank you notes to sponsors twice a year.  He gladly agreed to be the secretary of SHAMA, Inc. after the passing away of Dr Razdan. Steve takes up any task the organization needs help with.  I hope you return back soon after a speedy recovery, Steve. We thank Alice Keefe for being the Director of a very worthy program Shama Kids.

Ashok Bhargava visited SHAMA, Inc. projects in India during the fall of 06 at his own expenses. He visited the Mumbai School, Mhaskal school, village projects and was very impressed by SHAMA, Inc.'s work there. Ashok met director of ShamaWELL work in Tamil Nadu and Naidu School in the village of Andhra Pradesh. He met the activist for Rajasthan Project. He was very satisfied with his personal interaction with Mr. Sevlam. Ashok spearheaded a Library project for a city school in Bangalore and raised money single handed for the project. He is an asset to SHAMA, Inc.

Devinder Sandhu is a great cook and organizer for all our cooking fundraising projects. He has been giving free Bhangra Classes every week for this past year. He teaches Bhangra to families of Heritage India group, UWSP students and community members. He has done fundraising for the Punjab Project. His father, Jagga Singh gave insight to the Punjab Project at the last executive committee meeting. Punjab school is giving good women leadership training by letting women students run the school for a day and giving them training to compete with boys in sports. Punjab project is under good leadership and has lot of potential for development. School building has a potential for lot of village development work after school.

Robert Kreczner and Richa Chander gave great leadership to the ShamaWell program. They have spent many hours together to make micro loans a successful program. Richa has worked hard with Linda on the WELL brochure.  She and Robert worked together to make the bookkeeping user friendly. Richa has helped in every possible activity of SHAMA, Inc. from the very beginning. Robert’s gentle way of helping has made a big positive difference.

Jagdish works tirelessly for all the SHAMA, Inc. Projects and aspects of work in helping with tax filing, ShamaKids, ShamaWell and bookkeeping of web sites.

Shreemayee has been coming from Green Bay to help in fundraising, cooking and crafts table, singing in Marshfield, Portage County Culture Fest, and Jazz Fest. Shreemayee gave guided tour of the Orissa Project to Jyoti in India. D P Kar and Shreemayee are dedicated to the development of their extremely poor village.

Terese Stauss has been working very hard during her busiest time to file tax returns for SHAMA, Inc. and spending many hours to understand the work of SHAMA, Inc.

Lynn Kirby, SHAMA, Inc. webmaster is very prompt in updating the information given to her to keep up with ever changing sponsors of ShamaKids and ShamaWell.

SHAMA, Inc.’s Local Work

Nick & Corinne Dempsey helped raise funds for SHAMA by running a food stall for two days at the Jazz Fest in Stevens Point in September, 06, Labor Day weekend.

The nineteenth Festival of India on Sep 30, 06 involving UWSP and SPASH faculty, students & staff and community was again a big success for advancing diversity education and understanding.

A volunteers’ appreciation dinner and Diwali celebration was organized by the Heritage India group, South Asia Society and SHAMA, Inc. at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Stevens Point in Oct, 06, 2006.

Pam Luedtke and her Dance Ensemble gave a workshop on Indian Folk dances at Jefferson School on Oct 15, 2006.  Students participated in Bhangra Dance and Rajasthani dance.  Pam was assisted by Cathy Derezinski and Richa Chander. The program lasted more than two hours.

UWSP South Asia Society Bhangra group and SHAMA, Inc.'s children group performed at the 2nd annual fundraising for Stevens Point Women's Crisis Center at Clark Place, November 2006. SHAMA, Inc. had a craft stall to fund raise for the Local Crisis Center.

SHAMA, Inc. set up a craft stall at the Annual Tinsel Trail organized by the Junior Women's Club Nov 2006.

SHAMA, Inc. volunteers set up a food stall and craft stall at the UW Marshfield Center to celebrate the Annual Culture Fest February 2007.  Shreemayee Kar sang Indian classical music for the audience. DP Kar & Jagdish volunteered to present a workshop on SHAMA, Inc.  Cathy Derezinski organized the India Henna stall.  Pam Luedtke led the Tribal dances for the occasion.

Ashok, Jagdish and Jyoti went to St. Louis to gather support for SHAMA, Inc. at the invitation of Dr Suthar and his family Feb 07.

SHAMA, Inc. volunteers helped South Asia Society set up a food stall to raise funds for SHAMA, Inc. at the annual Portage County Culture Fest May 2007.  SHAMA, Inc. also set up a craft stall. SHAMA, Inc. and the South Asia Society Bhangra dance groups, lead by Devinder Sandhu and Pam Luedtke, gave dance performances at the Fest and Shreemayee Kar gave a classical Indian music vocal rendition.

SHAMA, Inc. workers helped ADIRE in setting up an Indian food stall for three days at the Energy Fair in Amherst area June 07 to raise funds for the Orissa project.

Lauri Martin Keefe, SHAMA Heritage India Group and South Asia Society UWSP organized the third annual Holi and Rakhi festival celebration at Mead Park July 30, 07.

India work

Jyoti and Shreemayee visited the worksites in villages of Orissa near Cuttack June 07.  This work is lead by Durga Prasad Kar and Shreemayee. The bio gas plant, mushroom growing, tailoring training, making the pressed brick, construction of a health care building and elementary school, gardening, cow and goat care and solar energy projects were running successfully. Jyoti had a mushroom dinner grown by ShamaWELL women and got four Kurtas from the woman trained in sewing with ShamaWELL loans. SHAMA, Inc. is really helping the poorest of poor and all our efforts are changing the lives of the poor. Poor kids in a village having access to the computer is a very energizing sight for any SHAMA, Inc. worker. We must work hard to support the program.

Mumbai, P N Doshi College started two Masters Degree programs and an ESL Language lab to help poor kids become more competent for professional school entrance exams.

SHAMA, Inc. gave 100 micro loans to women. Organizers are getting 100% loan payments back to help more women with the same money.

Jyoti met an instructor who was teaching in the computer training class.  This instructor had received her computer training with ShamaWELL loans. She was very proud to say that she returned her loan of Rs 15, 000 completely. Two women dropped in the SHAMA, Inc. office to pay back their monthly loan installment.

All the women in the ShamaWELL program are returning their loans and are doing very well in their profession. The lady from Mumbai slum who got a loan to cater food to the nearby offices and shops has hired four other women to help her in her work. The women who got a bigger loan for a pickle project is flourishing very well. All this is possible because of the able leadership of SPRJ Kanyashala Trust.

Jyoti met the room full of women who receive the scholarship money. They told their sad stories of sex discrimination in the family and outside the family. They were inspired to help us in our ShamaKids and ShamaWELL programs.

SHAMA, Inc. got a bigger and better office at P N Doshi college with a private restroom. It used to be the trustees’ office. Modeled after ShamaKids, the school started their own program called DIYA to sponsor the education of a poor child. They got 140 kids sponsored by donors in India during their very first effort.  Shama work is a real catalyst for good education in a real sense.

Mhaskal Village

Click on pictures for larger views

Sewing uniforms
Making school uniforms 
Jyoti gave graduation certificates to the village women who successfully completed the course at the sewing school. 100% of the women succeeded in learning the sewing skills. They were stitching the uniforms for ShamaKids in the village and in Mumbai. They were doing a good job of sewing the uniform and earning the money from ShamaKids funds.  Graduation
Graduating student getting certificate

SHAMA, Inc. gardening and food cooperative had a dramatic success this year. Their revenue was ten times the money we loaned them for cooperative. Villagers paid back part of their loan by handing me the check in the name of the SPRJK Trust. It was very rewarding to see the smiles of success on their faces. The village had abundance of crops. They wanted the means to sell the crops outside the village. Jyoti saw the pipes and control booth that helps to draw water from the nearby canal. I saw the good example of vertical gardening with good vegetables hanging from the plants.

Vertical gardening 
Vertical gardening
Successful gardens
Controls for water supply 
Water controls
Heera Bai's house 
Heera Bai's house
under construction ('05)
ShamaKid high school boy 
ShamaKid growing
into village leader

SHAMA, Inc.’s work became an object of envy for the neighboring villages. Jyoti visited the neighboring villages, one village is 100 % tribal but there is no means of transportation to connect those smaller villages to Mhaskal. Tribal villagers from Mhaskal wanted some brick housing, the kind Pat Reckrey built for one woman, Heera Bai, in the village. Tribal villagers leave their dwelling of mud and straw in the rains and take their kids out of school. They asked for some solution for their big problem of housing made with bricks. 

SHAMA, Inc. has decided to start a brick kiln in the village to give employment and means to make their houses. Their kids can stay in school. P N Doshi students and scholarship recipients are going to help the villagers build houses after the model for Habitat for Humanity. We need to raise funds for that. The SHAMA, Inc. committee has approved to give a three wheeler (an all purpose vehicle) to continue the development of the Mhaskal village and may help in expanding the work in neighboring villages. SHAMA, Inc. has approved to expand the gardening program to the nearby villages.

SHAMA, Inc.’s work was honored by the Indian Government. Mhaskal village, along with two other villages in all of India, got the meaningful development award in Delhi. The woman village Head, Shaguna Bai, along with SHAMA, Inc. volunteers went to Delhi to receive the National award. Jyoti has a picture with the award.

The ShamaKids program has created a village leader. He takes great interest in village development programs and the ShamaKids program. He is going to high school and uses the bike given by the ShamaKids program.

Jyoti connected with All India Women Conference (Akhil Bhartiya Mahila Parishad) established 1918. Vijay Lakshmi Pandit (Nehru’s Sister) was the first President. Freedom fighter and Poetess of India Sarojani Naidu was also its President. The Police Chief Kiran Bedi is a very active person of the organization.

SHAMA, Inc. has approved a program to train women for Taxi driving and Car repair in Delhi (WOW). New Delhi is set to host The Commonwealth Games in 2010, and our trained women taxi drivers will be great for that time. Radio taxi has made taxi driving much safer because the head office can hear all conversations of all taxis. The president of AIWC west wing Mrs. Harinder Kaur along with Dr Shivani Mittra are leading the project in Delhi. The Progressive Society of India is helping in the Women on Wheels Project (WOW). The program is a real call of need.  See the article attached.

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