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Sunday, October 31, 2010

ICAB Diwali Program 2010 - Youth Essay Competition

ICAB Diwali Program 2010 - Youth Essay Competition

Essay contest for youth ages 8 and above was held by Indian Cultural Association of Birmingham (ICAB) on the occasion of Diwali 2010 . Among four age groups, there were twenty participants. On Oct 30, the Diwali program day, all first and second place winners were given awards on stage. Best essay from each group is published here as written.

Age Group 1: 8-9 Years

Age Group 2: 10-11 Years

Age Group 3: 12-13 Years

Age Group 4: 14 and older

 

 

 

Essay topics:

1.     Cultural Heritage beyond First Generation

Pointers

·        What do you think about the Indian culture?

·        How much does it matter to you?

·        Do you think that you will carry this forward?

·        Would you be interested in actively participating in community organizations?

·        What will be the future of our religious institutions in the USA?

·        What needs to be done so that you will be encouraged to get involved?

 

2.     ICAB

Pointers

·        What would you do if you became president of ICAB?

·        What programs would you implement? Why?

·        What role does ICAB play in the Indian community now?

·        What role will ICAB play in the future of the local Birmingham Indian community

First prize winners receiving awards from essay contest judges Kusum Singh and Raj Gopalachar being helped by Hina Patel of ICAB.

Age Group: 8-9 Years

Best Essay by Deven Patel

Topic: Cultural Heritage beyond First Generation

What do I think about the Indian culture? I think that the Indian culture is a great culture because they do great dances, great food and wear very nice clothes and this is what I think about the Indian culture.

The Indian culture matters to me a lot because we do very important things that help us when we grow up and for other people who we love.

I think I will carry this forward because I know that everything I learned in my class is very important and if I carry this forward I will know tons of stuff about the Indian culture.

Hopefully I will help in the Indian culture and follow my mom’s footsteps because if I do everything will be great and just like the same way it is now.

In the future I think that there will be tons of Indian temples. They will be very good temples but I think that the best temple to go to is the temple that I am at and that’s my opinion.

The Indian temple needs to do maybe an adult joke and a kids joke because if you don’t let the kids laugh then the only fun thing for them is the dance they do. The kids that don’t do dances they will be even more bored about the program. The other thing they could change is that the Indian classes could go to the mandir to say the gods and come back to the classroom to say something about each one of the gods. This is what I think they should change to help the Indian temple.

 

Age Group: 10-11 Years

Best Essay by Nivedita Rao

Topic: Cultural Heritage beyond First Generation

 

What do you think about the Indian Culture?

          I am proud of the Indian culture. I feel good about it when I follow it and talk about. There are many ways you can follow it and a few examples are going to religious class and wearing Indian clothing and one of the most important one is praying to God and it makes me enlightened. So those are some ways that help you preach the Indian culture. I feel that all my spirits are lifted away and I am blessed.

How much does it matter to you?

          The Indian culture is like my life. If I am an American citizen it doesn’t mean I don’t care about it. If it was a scale of one to ten and one doesn’t mean you care and ten means it is a lot to you I would say ten. I talk about the Indian culture at school and people love it. This culture is one of the most important things in life.

Do you think that you will carry this forward?

          I will carry the culture in many generations. I will tell my kids about it and make sure they’ll follow it. Also where ever I go I will tell a person and I will not care if I get humiliated. When I go off my family will carry it on. This culture will always be in my hands and will never be let go off.

Would you be interested in actively participating in community organizations?

          I would always be interested in actively participating in community organizations. If someone asked me I would say yes and also I would ask them myself. You can participate in helping kids read in religious places and you can participate in dance programs and I will give money and those are ways you do stuff for the community. Have you guys heard of something like if you do or give something you will get something ten times better, but you shouldn’t just do it for that. So you should always be willing to participate in community services.

What will be the future of our religious institutions in the USA?

          In the future I think the religious places will have developed better. There will be more priests and joyful souls. People maybe more devoted to God and more institutions will be built. And there will be religious classes. People will be happy and more interested in the future because of the places.

What needs to be done so that you will be encouraged to get involved?

          There are many needs to be encouraged to get involved. Some ways are learning classical music and dance. There are always many other ways. And one important one is preaching about the Bhagavat Geetha and that is like our Bible. So we all shall be encouraged and we also should do it to other noble souls and we will always are needed to be involved.

 

Age Group: 12-13 Years

Best Essay by Mihir Limdi

Topic: Cultural Heritage beyond First Generation

I think it is a culture worth learning about.

The Indian culture matters a lot to me but is not my main focus. But I do use some aspects of this religion or culture in everyday life.

Yes, I would pass the Indian culture down to other generations and would urge them to pass it down.

Yes, if I have time.

I think if we expand we will have a better future. Also expanding would draw in newcoming people that would like to study our religion and would strengthen the belief.

We need bigger space, more religious teaching and more religious functions.

 

Age Group: 14 and older

Best Essay by Shivani Patel

Topic: ICAB

If I became an ICAB president then I would continue with the functions they have already. I would continue having Diwali programs and the other ones they have. It is a good idea for kids to get involved in Indian cultural functions. ICAB encourages kids to participate in the programs by dancing, singing, acting in plays, and other things. If I became the ICAB president, I would ask for feedback from the kids and see what they call “fun”. I would want all the kids to enjoy all activities ICAB does and get more involved in it. ICAB is a wonderful committee and should continue with their activities so that in the future when I become an ICAB president I can continue with the tradition and make it more enjoyable.

 

Photo Credits: Dr. Suresh Grandhi

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