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Indians in Australia help Karnataka flood-hit schoolkids

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The Times Of India
29th September, 2019 16:00 IST

BELAGAVI: The devastating floods in north Karnataka have taken a heavy toll on school going children. Many children have lost their bags, books and other learning materials. However, members of Basava Samithi Sydney, Australia, have come forward to help of one such worst affected village Satti, in Athani taluk by ensuring that students get back their digital and learning material and continue their education.

Basavaraj Mathapati, president, Vishwanath Halyal, vice president of Basava Samithi Sydney, said that when flood occurred in Karnataka, many of Kannadigas wished to extend their help for relief works. “But they all expressed a need to deliver our help to genuine beneficiaries. We knew that immediately required material was distributed by many companies, organizations, government agencies during flood. So, we stressed on material that can be used by beneficiaries of specific village for longer term. After long deliberations, we came to a conclusion that we should send digital and learning material to Government High School (GHS) of Satti village,” they explained.

Gurumahanta Swamiji of Ilkal and Basavalinga Swamiji of Mahanta tirtha handed over learning and digital material to Government High School in Satti village

Other members Bharat Basappa and Sangamesh Salimath informed that they hosted a lunch as a fund raising event at Parramatta Park in Sydney three weeks ago. “We, all members of Basava Samithi, sponsored this lunch from our own pockets. Our intention was to make good use of all the money collected from donations and it should not be used for any logistic work of initiative. As many as 150 Kannadigas, hailing from all parts of Karnataka, participated in the lunch and offered funds as much as possible. We could collect Rs 2 lakh by the end,” they added.

GB Halyal, a retired lecturer in Hubballi, who helped Sydney Kannadigas in recognizing the village and need of students, said that he visited the school and enlisted required material for the school. “This government school had smart classrooms and advanced digital equipment. We sent the list of material to Basava Samithi Sydney members. We approached traders in Hubballi requesting them to furnish material at wholesale price in the interest of flood victims. Many of them responded positively and provided material at even lesser than wholesale price. As a result, we got material worth of Rs 2.50 lakh in Rs 2 lakh,” he mentioned.

Anitha B Patil, GHS Satti, asserted that she has received a laptop, printer, projector, CDs of classes, science laboratory equipment, microscope, slides, models of human body parts. “They have even provided 350 plates, notebooks for students. If this help was not provided, learning could have been deferred this year,” she said with gratitude.

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