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Karmayog Clubs in different areas in Mumbai

Based on
a) the positive feedback of Karmayog Chennai Chapter initiative by Raj Varadarajan and others there
b) the strong desire and willingness expressed by so many individuals in the yahoo group to help in the areas that they can help as being initiated by Mani (M. H. Subrahmaniam) and Ratna Khemani
c) the general lack of a mechanism or organisation(s) to effectively connect citizens with government
d) the long commuting time involved in attending meetings
e) the help that people are indeed quietly providing to those who are requesting help in the yahoo group
f) the large base of volunteers who have willingly publicly registered themselves in Karmayog and are willing to help out within their time constraints

I am beginning to think that it may indeed be worthwhile if independent localised groups can be formed who can take up various problems in those areas as well as problems of individuals in those areas.

My initial thoughts are:
a) Purpose: to enable those who need support and those who wish to offer support to be able to connect with each other
b) Meetings: once a week for 30 - 60 minutes at some set time and defined place e.g. someone's home
c) Meeting schedule will be displayed on the Karmayog website and will be open to all.
d) Co-ordinators: 3 co-ordinators should soon be selected by the regular attendees for a one-year term e.g. till June 30, 2008, for uniformity
e) Agenda: to discuss area problems, and also to discuss personal problems of individuals
f) These could be circulated on the yahoo group for inviting suggestions on how to solve the problems. The feedback received should be given to the person who raised the problem, should be discussed in the next meeting, and the co-ordinators could also take it up with concerned authorities, etc. This could be done independently by them or it could be done under the Karmayog banner, if necessary.
g) These "Karmayog Clubs" would function independently on whichever issues they would like to but based on evolving guidelines as accepted by all.

To kick off:
1. If you are interested in calling a preliminary meeting in your area, please send an email stating a time and place, along with your phone numbers. (My general experience is that number of attendees vary from 4 to 10, so it may be convenient to hold the initial meetings at your home itself.)
2. It is more important to hold the first few meetings and see how it evolves, rather than spending time in discussing the how-to, etc., in detail beforehand. (My general experience is that with such initiatives, several succeed and several flop --- and it is not useful to try to determine beforehand if it will work or not.)
3. While I will not personally attend the meeting, I will engage on phone and email, and provide whatever support I can.

I look forward to some positive responses. If 10 such groups start off in Mumbai, it can lead to very interesting results.

Thanks,
Vinay