Presentation on theme: "American Hindu World Service and Nutrition (AHWS) By Divya L. Selvakumar, MPH Founder and Director International Food Aid and Development Conference May."— Presentation transcript:
American Hindu World Service and Nutrition (AHWS) By Divya L. Selvakumar, MPH Founder and Director International Food Aid and Development Conference May 8, 2012 Kansas City, MO, USA
There is none other who does greater good than the one who removes hunger of those in a difficult situation, helpless, weak and disturbed.” Mahabharata XIII “Give. Give with a faith. Do not give without faith. Give with sensitivity. Give with a feeling of abundance. Give with right understanding.” Tattirya Upanishad “Relieving the ravaging hunger of the poor is the most secure use of a man’s wealth.” Tirukkural 226 “Acts of sacrifice, charity and austerity should not be abandoned, but should be performed because of sacrifice; charity and austerity are purifiers of the wise.” Bhagavad Gita Hinduism’s Basis of Service in Ancient Sanskrit Texts
Dedicates to serving the poorest of the poor and helping to alleviate ills – poverty, hunger, and disease through progressive programs and sustainable development Promotes human rights and justice to people of all races, background, religious faiths, and ethnic communities Offers information and brings awareness to the public about the philosophy of Hinduism with an emphasis of service, tolerance and compassion AHWS Goals
Founded in 2008 and became registered 501(c)(3) in June 2011 Based in Rockville, MD and is contact with several major non-faith based and faith-based NGOs throughout MD/VA/DC Currently developing two programs in nutrition and education Completing registration and paperwork within Sri Lanka and Nigeria, already completed registration in Indonesia Overview of AHWS
Food, known as “Annam”, is considered to be a sacred part of life, and must never be wasted, disrespected or insulted in any form; leftovers should be given to homeless In the Dharmasastras, Hindu dietary laws govern the preparation, production, storage, and consumption of food; cleanliness and sanitation in serving should always be practiced Ancient Hindu customs dictate that it is an honor for the host to serve food to a guest, the poor, and the hungry Hinduism and Nutrition
Annapurna is the Goddess of Food, and is revered by many foodservice establishments The Bhagavad Gita recognizes that food prepared in a “sattvic” or pure manner will bring happiness, longevity, and better health; food that is too bitter, spicy, acidic, pungent, salty, or sour will bring unhappiness, sorrow, and disease Vegetarianism encouraged, although NOT required, stating the health benefits and encourages the practice of “ahimsa” or non-violence Hinduism and Nutrition, cont.
Annapurna, The Goddess of Food
Adopt a comprehensive approach to nutrition and food security that focuses on reducing under- nutrition and greater education on nutrition Invest in country-led plans Strengthen strategic coordination–globally, regionally, and locally Leverage the benefits of multilateral institutions Deliver on a sustained and accountable commitment Possible Future Nutrition Strategies to Address Hunger
Name of organization: Alpha Vision AIDS Alliance Collaboration with AHWS for doing HIV education combined with nutrition and focus on positive living Interacting with both Christian and Muslim populations on Interfaith development Engaging in continued faith-based dialogue on further nutritional projects Using culturally sensitive foods for teaching HIV nutrition Nigeria
Partner: Parama Yuga Foundation, Inc. (Jakarta, Indonesia) Plans to build a Hindu boarding school for Hindu children Pushing towards the recognition of the Hindu community throughout Indonesia Fighting conversion and proselytizing Engaging in the promotion of healthy food and nutrition in schools from the Hindu point of view – i.e. philosophy Indonesia
Partner: Trincomalee District Development Association (TDDA), Trincomalee, Sri Lanka Building of two tuition centers in a Sinhalese and Tamil village for schoolchildren affected by the 2004 tsunami disaster and civil war Provision of tuition teachers to 8 villages in Trincomalee district Providing midday meals to villages to promote proper nutrition for children who do not have access to nutritious food by collaborating with local kitchens and access to local NGOs Sri Lanka
Questions, comments, or suggestions? Divya L. Selvakumar, MPH Director, AHWS Cell: (626) Thank you!