The Unsung Hero Of India #1

imageAnand Kumar was born in Patna, Bihar and attended a Hindi Medium School where he developed an enormous passion for Mathematics

Mr Kumar lost his father at a young age & his family suffered financial troubles henceforth. The family was solely dependent on his mother’s earnings.

He delivered home made papads (Crispy Indian snack) to shops and homes on his bicycle. Meanwhile, in 1992, he founded Ramanujam School of Mathematics where anyone could join without paying a penny & attend math camps

In 1994, his dreams came true and he was offered an education in Cambridge and Sheffield universities. Regrettably, lack of financial resources did not permit him to pursue his further education.

But the unflinching Anand did not loose hope and converted his club and camp into a coaching institute for competitive exams.
He also created the Super 30 programme to provide free education to the 30 talented students from financially poor backgrounds, for he knew that financial problems should not deter talent from achieving great heights.

The initiative provides free coaching, boarding and accommodation to the 30 talented children, chosen by Mr Anand and exclusively trained for the IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) JEE (Joint Entrance Exam) exam.

The initiative gets funds from the money earned by Anand from his coaching institute where he teaches about 500 students per batch, three times a week for 2.5 hours each.

The money earned is directed towards the Super 30 programme. The results of his 30 students have indeed been extremely impressive.

Founded in 2003, 18 students made it to IIT, whereas in 2004, the number rose to 22. 26 students were selected in 2006 and 28 got into IIT in 2007. In 2008 and 2009, 30 out of 30 students made it to IIT! (The difficulty level of JEE Exams are very high!)

Mr Anand Kumar has been a speaker at Atlanta, where he delivered a fantastic lecture in the annual conference organized by the American Mathematics Society and the Mathematics Association of America.

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He also contributed to the widely popular journals from the U.K., The Mathematical Gazette and the Mathematics Spectrum, and Parabola published in Australia.

Mr Kumar now aspires to establish schools for the poor and financially backward students so that their talent does not dwindle with time.
In fact, Discovery Channel had once featured a programme on Super 30. The New York Times has also written about Anand Kumar.

A Truly Humble & a Great Man, Indeed!

Trying My Hand At Photography…

Adolescence has taken a toll on me.  My passions never seem to terminate! One’s zest for life and interests should know no bounds, regardless of age!

(All pictures taken from my mother’s IPhone 5c)

need to click a lot more impressive pictures to compel my parents into buying me an expensive digital camera.😉

Another Mother Teresa In Making

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Image courtesy: http://en.akshy.org/akshy/our-team/

After a tiring day from the school, I rush back to my home. ‘How can someone like school?’ I ponder on this thought when my mother opens the main door. ‘Another attack on our valiant soldiers in Uri’ she despondently asserts.
For the past one week, our media has been portraying all sorts of news regarding the Uri attack and its aftermath. “Why doesn’t the neighbouring country concede its participation in this gruesome event? Should the Pakistani artists be banned in India? Is another war inevitable!?” And all of these discussions are the talk of the town in the country across the border too.
My heart bleeds for the martyred soldiers and the voice inside me revolts against this brutal episode. Where is this world heading to? Shouldn’t we provide aid to the families of these heavenly soldiers financially as well as emotionally instead of commencing a Twitter War with the citizens of the neighbouring country?

Another thought disturbs my disconsolated mind:

why the news channels only support the negatives of the world while overshadowing the positive ones? As my thoughts horrify me even more, my soul tries to find solace on the internet to know if humanity still exists.

I come across two truly wonderful souls who reclaim my faith in humanity- the gorgeous Mother Teresa who deserves to be a popular figure and Raquel Mason Palomeque, The one who is actually following Mother Teresa’s footsteps.

This Spanish woman has taken massive efforts to change the lives of the Dalit children in Bihar for the past 10 years!

Dalits in India are the members of the lowest caste who’ve been mistreated at every phase in the course of our country’s history. Only few courageous people have tried to alter the norms set by the ruthless society, and Ms Raquel is one of them. The Dalit community in Bihar was suffering and its children were deprived of the basic education and sufficient healthcare. Ms Raquel, who’d already fallen in love with the country’s sublime culture by that time, took the decision to return to Spain to collect funds for these beautiful yet hapless children of God.

Just like Mother Teresa, she decided that she’ll make her life more useful to others. In the year 2008, She quit her job in Spain and sold her house to compensate for her expenses and left for India. She opened up Akshy Educational Centre and Kamal School, where currently about 220 children are being taught. You’ll be surprised to know that half the seats in the school are reserved for girls!
She strongly believes that education will provide them with instruments to stand up for their views, ideas and ask for their rights as Indian Citizens.

We need souls like Mother Teresa and Raquel who aspire to diminish the negativity of this world! Come, let’s become one!
To know more about her mission, you can visit her website: http://en.akshy.org
My gratitude to: ‘The Better India’ newsletter that inspires me by helping me connect with beautiful people like Raquel Mason Palomeque!

ThinkAboveHorizon

A Trip That Changed My Mindset

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As a part of my hobby to study the cross-section of people across different regions in the country, I made my trip to Mussoorie this time. Today I’d been to the local market of this mesmerizing place. Far away from the crowded cities, disturbing noises and bad air, I was in a place that truly possessed abundance of beauty, meditative silence, fresh air and good people who hadn’t failed to maintain it. The place welcomed our arrival by showering rains which mollified our minds and along with that, the cool winds acted as a tonic for our nervous souls. Indeed, nature is rightfully called our mother.

But, one thing that had altered my mindset and shocked my senses was the sight of the inhabitants of this place. Even at the age when crutches act as the main support system for the body to move, these amazing people of the hills amazed me with their amazing health. I saw tons of old men and women carrying heavy loads on their head and up they went to the hill top without a slight hitch! Tough to believe? I’ve the proof-
The lady in the picture above should be rightfully called a woman of sheer substance. She’s Savitri, a 77 year old woman of the hills. At this fragile age, she is hesitant to be dependent on the other for her living. When my grandma asked for a packet of cookies, with a pretty smile on her face, Savitri stood up on the stool and took out a few packets for her. From that day on, I hold a deep reverence for the people of this area particularly this subject lady. Savitri unknowingly taught me that it’s not age which hinders your real potential but your mindset. Change your mindset, change your world!

ThinkAboveHorizon

6 Ways To Cure Low Self-Esteem Issues- Blogging My Own Experience

6 Ways To Cure Low Self-Esteem Issues- Blogging My Own Experience


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Teenage years are quite challenging, this is the period when you are neither classified as a child nor an adult. You have to be at your level best. Your parents, teachers, peers expect a lot from you and sometimes, however, there comes a point in your life when you’re not able to stand up to their expectations and experience failure. Consequently, after certain sets of failures you have to deal with criticism. This leads to a severe blow to your self-esteem and eventually you lose it.
This was just an example, there are many more reasons that might have contributed to your low self-esteem. It’s okay if you have a low self-esteem, it’s totally fine! Just remember that there are thousands in this world, who had dealt with this situation and came out of it successfully and soon you’ll be one of one of them! I too experienced a low self-esteem and believe me there’s a cure to this troubling issue of yours. So just hold back and follow these directives-
1) Huggie Time!
Yes! Huggie Time is the perfect solution. Hug yourself tightly and murmur this to yourself- ‘(your name) I love you, you’re the best!’ Do this two times a day (let me be more precise-) the moment after you wake up, and the moment when you are about to go to sleep. Try this technique and follow it strictly until you feel better…(it surely works!)
2) Help someone in need!
Whenever you help someone, you feel wonderful and happy. You feel good about yourself! Donate your pocket-money (I understand, it can be tough!)  or help a friend  in need.
3) Self Affirmation is a must!
You’ve lost your self-esteem because you’ve been too negative and critical towards yourself. Just try to focus on your thoughts (try it right now!) or remember what was your last reaction when your mom told you that you look gorgeous in that outfit. Was the thought or reaction over critical? Did you find yourself overly judgemental and unsympathetic? Stop it right away! Imagine you’ve a friend who’s selfish but dear to you, would you tell her right on her face that she’s an egocentric and a self-absorbed person? If your answer’s a ‘yes’ then definitely you’ll see her teary eyed and soon realize you’ve deeply hurt her feelings.
 If your answer’s a ‘no way!’ then just think what have you been doing to yourself for past few days or months. You’ve deeply hurt yourself, haven’t you? Now is the time to heal those wounds. Here’s the solution- three times a day, sit in front of the mirror and speak good about yourself, appreciate your good heart, how you helped a friend when he was in need, tell yourself that you’re a beautiful soul, you are unique!
4) Choose the right people!
Spend time with those who are positive and kind towards you. Talk to them about your problems, ask them their opinions, ask them what they like about you. You’ll be amazed and thrilled by their answers! ‘Oh my god! Do you really find me lighthearted and fun to be with’ might be your reaction. You can talk to your parents and close friends about this.
5) Find new hobbies!
By doing this you’ll definitely find out that you’re talented! Don’t be disheartened at first if you tried your best but could not accomplish as a good singer, at least you tried and that’s a great thing! Some people don’t even give it a chance but you did!
Remember no one’s perfect! Try out something new everyday!
Last but not the least
6) Stay Positive!
You have to be alert all the time, have you been dwelling on negative thoughts? Take a step further and kick those thoughts out. They don’t deserve your precious time, do they? Now, think positive. That’s it. For instance, you’ve been thinking about your project presentation tomorrow and have been constantly saying this to yourself- ‘What if no one likes my presentation tomorrow?’
Change your thought by saying-‘No, this won’t happen. I’ve given my best and so do I deserve the best!
I hope you enjoyed reading! Do invite your comments
-Anshika Jhamb