Listed below are a few of the many Cultural Training Sessions and Campaigns organized by BAPS around the world.
Local Classes at BAPS Centers
Music, dance, theatre, culinary, and language classes are held at BAPS mandirs and cultural complexes around the world. These classes are taught by musicians to children of all ages from a beginner level to an advanced level. To find the nearest BAPS center, visit our Global Network page.
BST in North America and Europe
The Bal Sevak Training Camps are weekly events held at BAPS cultural centers in North America and Europe for selected children and teens. These camps provide specialized training in cultural, historical, and musical facets of Indian culture. Children are groomed to lead various cultural activities and are trained to be Indian cultural ambassadors in the future.
Dr. Hemant Patel noticed a difference in his son within weeks: “He was learning to read Gujarati, and more importantly, he was enjoying it. He would speak to me in Gujarati. In fact, he would answer questions I asked in English in Gujarati!”
BSS in India
Bal Sevak Sabha is a program customized for youths in Indiaand is mirrored after the BST program. It involves similar training in the areas of music, languge, literature, the arts, and public speaking. Children are taken on special cultural trips to witness the affluence of their heritage firsthand.
Eleven-year-old Sailesh speaks of his visit to the Sun Temple in Modhera: “I had never been outside of the city [Ahmedabad]. When our bus rounded the entrance to the complex of the Mandir, I was silenced. This was the India I wanted to see and experience for myself.”
Yuva Talim Kendra in India
Yuva Talim Kendra is a 6-month course designed to train youths with a detailed understanding of Indian culture and Hindu Sanatan Dharma. More than 150 youth are selected from all across India. The Kendra is hosted in the small Kathiawadi village of Sarangpur. The activities and informative lessons are taught on both a personal and group basis. These youths are taught to analyze and use the information they have received to speak intelligently and eloquently about Indian culture, to direct and perform theatrical and musical shows, and, most importantly, to ingrain its timeless values and lessons in their lives.
Jayur was a member of the first class; today, he is one of the directors of the program: “It changed my life completely. I am trying to think of how, but the real question is what hasn’t changed. It’s given me pride, ambition, and [a] solid understanding of what our culture truly values and teaches.”
Pratibha Vikas Parva in India
An initiative to focus on the cultural and moral development of young women around India, Pratibha Vikas Parva focuses on exposing women to leadership and communication building activities. It provides an environment that increases confidence and the ability to perform under pressure. The program is designed with a mix of practical and hands-on training with informative lectures. With a strong foundation in India’s cultural traditions, these young women develop the talents and skills needed to spread and share that knowledge with the community in which they volunteer.
Rita Bhatt says it changed her outlook on life. “I didn’t know how to read, write, let alone play musical instruments or speak in front of a crowd of people. Now, I can confidently lift my head high and speak to a number of men and women about our culture and traditions. The Pratibha Vikas Parva has made me into a new woman.”