Title: Ekal on Campuses
Presenter: Manav Tandon
Affiliation: Volunteer for Ekal - RTP Chapter

Abstract

Introduction

Most Ekal fundraising efforts are targeted towards professionals - doctors, lawyers, engineers, business owners, etc. - with the implicit belief that they are the ones who would be willing to dole out enough cash to sponsor Ekal schools.  However, the enormous potential of college, and to some extent high school, campus-based organizations to raise awareness and funds has so far not been thoroughly explored.

Project Details

There are two distinct populations of Indians on college campuses these days.  One is the second-generation Indian-American undergraduates, the other is first-generation Indian graduate students.  Both of these groups usually have a campus-based organization that caters to their crowd.  There may be additional organizations with a narrower focus, e.g. an Indian dance group, a South Asian fraternity/sorority, etc.  At some colleges, there are even dedicated Indian charitable organizations, e.g. AID, ASHA, CRY, etc.
Ekal should try a two-fold strategy to utilize the student community for awareness and fund raising efforts:
1. If possible, start a campus-based Ekal chapter.
2. If 1 is not possible, reach out to existing Indian/South Asian/Hindu campus-based organizations and try to convince them to donate some part of their events' proceeds to Ekal.

Conclusion

I have personally helped raise funds for Ekal through Hindu Students Council chapter at NC State University in the past.  There have been other Hindu and Indian organizations at other colleges that have also raised some money in the past.  However, those efforts have been inconsistent and haphazard.  What is needed is a concerted, coordinated effort to penetrate college campuses for the promotion of Ekal concept.


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