The kishoris of South East region gathered at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Tampa, FL on January 15, 2011 to participate in their first Sangam program. Sangam is a charity competition in which kishoris from each mandir compete in creating a cultural program and raise money for a worthy cause.
This year’s theme was Navdha Bhakti - the nine forms of devotion. Each mandir took one form of Bhakti as their theme and contributed in Indian dance, skit, poetry, singing and multimedia creation to create a program. The teams were judged on both technical merit and overall impression.
Each team also supported either of the three charities: Pramukh Swami Vidya Mandir – Sarangpur, BAPS Charities Education Fund - Sponsor a girl’s education for a year (India), and the Sunshine Foundation. The kishoris fundraised and donated various amounts with all donations going to the winning team’s charity.
The first place trophy went to the Raleigh: Shravanam. The second place trophy went to Atlanta: Kirtanam. The third place trophy went to Jacksonville: Atmanivedanam. Raleigh’s charity was BAPS Charities Education Fund. With the total amount donated by 145 Kishoris from the South East, they were able to sponsor the education of not one, but two girls for 2011.
The event brought about unity amongst kishoris from throughout the region. Not only did kishoris participate in the competition, but they also were involved in icebreaker activities, garba and a scavenger hunt across the Tampa mandir grounds, in teams of kishoris from across the region. At the end of the event, when the winners were announced, everyone cheered heartily for one another, truly personifying, “BAPS – Ek Parivar!”