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Jagadeep

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Mata Amritanandamayi Math
October 21, 2009

I have participated in many projects for the MA Math humanitarian charities, from regularly cooking for and feeding the homeless, to holding art auctions to raise money for the devastation of the 2004 tsunami and even Katrina. I just returned from two months at MA Math, where I wrote and directed some educational videos that will be incorporated into a cutting edge software that uses haptics to teach young Malayalam men and women trade skills so they can apprentice with a professional and get a job. The software is aimed at educating students in fields where the equipment is expensive or hard to come by; the pilot program is vocational plumbing. Touch-screen training stations are planned for throughout India. Students watch an instructional video, then learn to operate the tools in virtual space on a computer. Bench vices, pipe vices, die and die stock, drilling machines, etc. are quite expensive and rare for rural Indians. The haptics equipment connected to the computer allows the students to manipulate a CGI version of the tools in a manner as close to reality as possible. So these students then have basic skills they can take to apprentice with a professional and then find a job. Plumbing is the pilot program, but the applications are endless, and useful wherever the necessary equipment is out of reach of the ordinary rural Indian - aircraft maintenance, for instance, is the next planned vocational module. Though I only spent two months on this particular project, many more will be necessary to complete the entire program; my part is a tiny part in the whole of a group of dedicated visionaries and programmers and professionals, all of whom lend their skills voluntarily to create a series of educational stations that will help educate rural India and give its people the means to make a living in the global economy.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The feeling of real joy in being able to serve others. There is nothing like it.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Exceptional, dedicated, and working selflessly.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Continue to change the world for the better, through programs such as the one previously mentioned.

Ways to make it better...

I had more time to dedicate to the vocational training program. I'm looking forward to writing more from Los Angeles, but anticipating my next trip to MA Math.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

MY ROLE:
Volunteer & I cook for and feed the homeless as part of Amma's Kitchen in Los Angeles.