National Hindu Students Forum (UK)

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End of year report

By Kajal Valani
NHSF President 2008-2011

Looking at what we have done and achieved this year has made me extremely proud to have been the President of NHSF.

This past year we have had two major national events...

Embracing a novel idea, NHSF (UK) pioneered its first ever interactive theatre production, ‘Circle of Life’, which used a plethora of (almost) Oscar-winning drama, stunning dance and show-bizz extravagance to show the journey of a British Hindu girl going through dilemmas in her life.  It visually demonstrated how Dharma helped her to tackle the questions and issues that she had and how it can easily apply to each and every one of us, too.

A unique aspect of this day was the ‘NatCom All-stars’ match where a chapter played kabbadi against the national committee (i.e. NatCom) of NHSF (UK). During the match there was a micro-cosm of what the Hindu community can do; when Hindus unite, they can be fair and make a stand together. Therefore, this match had NO referee, scores were kept by score keepers and the entire match was played on the principle of honesty by both teams. The team captains were able to talk it out amicably if there were any disagreements.

A more prominent example of what can be achieved when Hindus unite was demonstrated by NHSF (UK) chapters working together to put on two events which made a phenomenal impact across the country. The first being North Zone's ‘108 Hanuman Chalisa’ where the efforts put in by every chapter in the North Zone allowed bhakti to be practiced The effect was felt and spread to the rest of us across the country. The second was the 12-hour ‘Krishna Kirtan’ organised by Central Zone chapters. The numerous emails and messages I received congratulating NHSF (UK) on this event is testament to how the Central Zone united and stood up as one.

Chapters have also surprised and astonished me with the calibre of their events. Chapters are now warming to the concept that the quality of an event and not just the quantity of people at an event is important. Chapters and National committee also took part in ‘Sewa Week 2011’ where activities were carried out to show that an act of Sewa can be diverse and easily slotted into our day to day activities.

During the last few years I have asked all leaders of NHSF (UK) chapters around the UK to not just do their job well, but to look to the future in raising the bar of excellence already set. On the first day in my role as President, my first thought was not just ‘how will I achieve results during my term?’  My mind went straight to ‘who will the next President after me be? I must keep an eye out and train potentials from now’. This is something all chapter office-bearers must do. Our job is to look at securing the future and act like Shri Krishna Bhagwan.  He excelled in many fields for us to take note of, be it in a spiritual, social or political respect. That is what we as British Hindu students must aspire to do and balance each area.

I am sure the year to come will not just follow the success of previous years, but surpass what has been achieved and, with this coming year being NHSF’s 20-year celebration year, I am sure it will be a spectacular year. I wish the new team all the best and am sure they will make us all proud.

As Swami Vivekanand said:

My faith is in the younger generation, the modern generation; they will work out the whole problem, like lions!

The first piece of advice I want to pass down that has made my team achieve all that we have:

Sanghatan Mein Shakti Hai - In Unity There Is Strength