July 4-7, 2002
In past years, karyakar conventions have taken a two-fold approach that separately focused on, first, creating an awareness of the need of karyakar development and, second, motivating karyakars to increase their satsang depth. In addition to karyakar skills, karyakars were motivated to incorporate what they have experienced throughout their lives into their seva. Moving into this year's theme, a combination approach was taken. In the presence of Pujya Mahant Swami and santos, this year's Karyakar Convention, KarCon 2002, was based around the idea of the incorporation of knowledge we receive from satsang gnan to our development as a karyakar. Hence, this shibir aimed to transform our presentation, networking, and management skills into satsang driven skills. To accomplish this, KarCon 2002 focused on Swamishri's wish that all balaks/balikas/kishores/kishoris become Adarsh. In fact, the Adarsh concept is integral in the mission statement of the bal/balika/kishore/kishore mandals: 'To create an environment that fosters the overall development spiritually, mentally, emotionally, socially, physically of every youth, and enables them to lead a Satsang centered life and come closer to Maharaj and Swami.'
The lesson that karyakars took from this shibir was that for us to make others Adarsh we must first strive to become Adarsh ourselves. Being Adarsh means taking responsibility for our respective mandals being the difference. We need to be Adarsh, and we need to improve our own personal satsang, improve the satsang of others, improve networking, improve sabha, and thus make most of the opportunity that Maharaj and Swami have given us, and fulfill our mission statement in making every youth Adarsh.
The shibir was held in upstate New York in the Catskill Mountains. In fact, Rajat Jayanti (held in the presence of Swamishri) in 1996 was in this same area. 559 Balak, Balika, Kishore, and Kishori Mandal karyakars representing six regions of BAPS North America attended this shibir. Karyakars were selected individually by regional saints.
The main emphasis of the shibir was to make karyakars aware that to become Adarsh, small steps of improvement must be taken in all aspects of our lives in our careers, studies, seva, and most importantly, our own personal satsang development and growth. The presence of Pujya Mahant Swami and his advice, experience, and inspiration proved to be yet another large step in helping to express this message to karyakars.