BAPS Volunteer Department
was set up to help the people mainly during times of natural disasters
like floods, famine, earthquakes and other forms of relief work.
Today, the Sanstha has some 45,000 male and female volunteers
around the world that serve society from relief work to organizing
medical camps, literacy drives to dowry-free mass marriages. Each
individual volunteer works with zeal, sometimes in harsh conditions
to uplift society.
- On 23 and 24 August 1997, the
U.K. National Women Volunteers’ Competition for girls and
women was held in London. 178 selected women volunteer leaders
from London, Leicester, Preston, Birmingham, Wellingborough
and Luton had participated in a number of competitions ranging
from elocution to management and memory skills.
More than 300 active
male and female volunteers had attended 5 special training conventions
in 1997 for child and youth forum volunteer co-ordinators. Param
Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj has entrusted these volunteers with
the task of teaching the upcoming generation the ideals and values
of satsang and steering them onto the path of virtuous living.
- As part of the Sanstha’s volunteer
training program, a special volunteer leaders’ convention
was organized in 1996. The program, spread over four months,
culminated in district competitions between 13th to 20th October
1996. 1,448 volunteers were hand picked from the Sanstha’s
different centers in India. A specially formulated training
program was organized in 52 different locations where the
volunteers were given the training.
- From 8th to 16th October 1994,
5,000 leading male and female volunteers gathered for the
first ever Volunteers’ Convention held in Vidyanagar in Gujarat.
Special seminars, exercises and workshops were conducted to
train the volunteers better at serving society.
Permanent Volunteer Training Center
For many years now, plans for a permanent volunteer training centers
were discussed. In 1997, a Permanent Volunteer Training Center
was inaugurated at our international headquarters in Ahmedabad
where expert and professional training is imparted to the Sanstha’s
active volunteers. The aim is to train volunteers in a variety
of fields in order to serve society better.
Pramukh Swami Maharaj
inaugurated a whole new block to promote activities for women
in Ahmedabad – the Headquarters of BAPS, in February 1999. It
will become the total central brain for all activities and women’s
centers around the world. The aim is to expand activities that
will help women in every respect.