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Dr. Fr. Ranjit George SJ
BA (Economics), MASW (PM & IR), MA (Philosophy)
Ph.D. in Management and Labour Studies (Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai)
Office Mobile: 0091-9446397763 (Through Anandavalli Amma)
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Launching the "Garden of Compassion"
20th December 2023 in the presence of the Provincial Fr. EP Mathew SJ
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Another year is close at hand. Christmas and New Year are always a time of rejuvenation and revitalization. The month of January finds its root in the Greek word Janus. Janus is a Greek goddess who was known for her duality, often depicted with two faces. Some people believe she represents new beginnings and evolution, as well as growth and transformation. She is also associated with doorways and thresholds, symbolizing transitions and the ability to see both sides of a situation.
LES also look forward to the new year as a conducive time for continuity, regenerative disruptions, new beginnings and evolution. We have many new initiatives in progress and in the pipeline sustained by a committed and passionate team.
It was two years ago, in January 2022, that we launched our LES Multiversity. LES Multiversity offered its maiden programme, the Gandhi-Mandela-Freire (GMF) Fellowship Programme. It emphasized the values, virtues and meanings of new humanities and compassion. This was achieved through a learning journey called Conscience and Compassion. Two batches -- 2022 and 2023 -- have completed the fellowship programme.
It has also paved for further deepening the value of compassion by initiating the Heroes of the Heart Award (HHA) and the launch of a new initiative, the Garden of Compassion. Thanks to Dr Nat, Mr Nirmal (2022 GMF Fellow from Nepal), Dr Saji P Jacob (Principal of LCSS) and Dr Joice (from Department of Disaster Management) for your imaginative vision and committed efforts. Let me take this opportunity to also thank Fr. Salvin, the principal of Loyola School for his unconditional support for the effort. The Garden of Compassion would be lovingly nurtured in the future by the communities associated with the Loyola School as well as the College.
LES Multiversity/LES/LCSS now dreams/plans of launching a number of programmes under the GMF Fellowship programme. Citizen Journalism will be a one-month residential programme for youth from rural and indigenous communities. Another programme is being developed under the GMF Fellowship Programme -- 'Climate Crisis-Sensitive Social Work'. This 6-month programme is envisaged to be regional programme. In addition to these efforts, LES Multiversity has started to work on and develop the Laudato Si Initiative (LSI)
The metamorphosis of Childline into Child Helpline and its integration into a government department led to another major turning point in the history of LES. Because of a natural institutional development, Childline is no more based in LES. We wish the government department that was a major support for us best wishes in continuing the work to care for our children. LES, however, reiterates its commitment to the cause of children. Under the aegis of a new LES initiative, the Loyomithra, the concern and care for children continues as Balamithra. Balamithra will reach out, accompany and support children and the teens in need and/or at risk.
Our outreach journey continues. We at LES are committed to reducing the prevalence of self-defeating behaviours, particularly substance use and addiction. We aim to make a lasting, positive impact on the lives and happiness of teenagers, fostering their resilience and guiding them towards a brighter and more co-created promising future. We are also looking to have collaborative networks to combat the menace faced by children and teens. The collaboration with Snehasena and TikTik Life in the Story Telling Bicycle Campaign and the formation of a voluntary network of 15 committed youth are also tender steps in this direction. Deepest appreciation and thanks to Shijo, Shal, Esther, Dr Fr Sanil SJ, Fr Deepak SJ, Fr Sheise SJ and a number of un-named selfless volunteers for your generous support in making it happen.
Loyomithra, our new initiative, has visualized a number of relevant initiatives deeply connected to the larger community needs. More on this will be available on our website soon (Jan/Feb2024). To share our preliminary efforts..Discover our comprehensive Workplace Wellness Fusion Program, seamlessly integrating 'Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)' and 'Transactional Analysis (TA)' to elevate employee well-being, reduce stress, and foster improved interpersonal relationships. As a first step, LoyoMithra/LESMultiversity/LES/LCSS is steering to launch Transactional Analysis certification for beginners - Diploma and Bachelors Programme - in collaboration with the ICTA, Kalamaserry in coming year (2024).
I am also happy to share that we have added a new outreach effort to LES -- Loyola Jeevika Migrant Services (LJMS). The outreach initiative is supported by the Migrant Assistance and Information Network (MAIN) programme of the Indian Social Institute, Delhi. It seeks to accompany and support distressed migrants. Dr Antony PS SJ leads this outreach effort and Mr. Aslam, who holds a masters degree in Social Work, assists him. We are taking all small and big efforts so that in the coming months we will able to deepen our engagements with the marginalized and distressed migrant communities.
LES has successfully completed six workshops for the youth supported by Indian Social Institute, Bangalore, in collaboration with Cheruresmi, Canosa Social Centre, Bluepoints.Org, and School for Democracy. This is to instill the importance of constitutional values. I like to thank Dr Sr Janet in encouraging and ensuring the participation of youth for the Poonthura community.
I like to share the launch of Global English Learning (GEL) Programme at Poonthura for young people. Deep appreciation and thanks to Dr Benny Chirammel SJ and Dr Janet Augustine for taking the initiative to make it happen. And the pain to continue to sustain it.
It was also another milestone that LES now owns a 2500 ft office space in the Diamond Jubilee Building of the College for expanding its operation.
I am hopeful that the New Year will be a time of blessings for all of us.
Together we make a difference.
With thanks and warm regards,
Dr. Fr. Ranjit George SJ