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Appeal in aid of our sangha in Delhi

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      :: Download Amida India Appeal 7th July

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      Below you will find a message from ITZI and the Amida Trustees, who are fundraising in support of our sangha in Delhi.


      We, the trustees of ITZI*, would like to tell you about the Amida Sangha in Uttar Pradesh and Delhi.

      The Sangha began over thirteen years ago, when Rev Sahishnu and Acharya Modgala were invited to go to Delhi to carry out an educational programme which taught English to Dalit children on the streets of Delhi. The Dalits – or so-called ‘Untouchables’ – are the lowest caste in the Indian system and have been subject to the most extreme prejudice, seen as less than human, worthy of no respect and restricted to work regarded as unclean. Dalits generally live in great poverty and often fear for their lives, especially if they challenge the system. The Dalit community told Dharmavidya that learning English is an essential first step to improve the prospects of Dalit children.

      The educational programme was a great success, teaching English to many dozens of street children and their Dalit families, and helping to gain respect from the local authorities.

      The Delhi sangha grew as the fruit of this work. Children and their families asked for classes in Buddhism and then became Buddhists, inspired particularly by the legacy of Dr Ambedkar’s Dalit Buddhist Movement, which sees Buddhism as a way out of the Dalit predicament.

      When Rev Sahishnu retired in 2014, Rev Suvidya, a local member of the Dalit community, was ordained as a full minister and took over the leadership of the project, to great success. A local organisation, the Amida Buddhist Association (ABA), was set up at the same time and now oversees the work of the project. In 2016, new premises were rented to become the sangha’s first Dharma centre.

      Rev Suvidya runs three busy weekly children’s classes in three different locations, teaching English and Buddhism, as well as leading two adult/mixed family services. He also makes regular pastoral visits to Buddhist families and others needing support.

      Since 2014, Amida Trust has supported Rev Suvidya in his work by providing him with a modest allowance and paying the Dharma centre rent. However, the Trust now needs to find additional donations to maintain the level of financial support needed to sustain this wonderful project. Given the financial impact that COVID-19 continues to have in the Dalit community…

      We need your help.

      Please help us to support Suvidya, Suando, Sudoshin and the community by making a donation today.

      No matter how small, your contribution will make a difference and help us secure the future of this project.

      We would particularly welcome regular monthly contributions.
      Even £5 per month would have a significant impact.

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      More Info 

      Contact Susthama

      Yours gratefully,

      The trustees of ITZI:

      Dharmavidya David Brazier, Cordelia Grimwood, Rachel Joyce-Gibbons, Geeta Chari, Susthama Kim

      The trustees of Amida Trust:

      Tony Danford, John Croxon, Pam O’Brien, Ian Summers-Noble

      * The International Zen Therapy Institute, ITZI, is a consortium of trainers and centres around the world dedicated to the development and dissemination of education in Buddhism, Buddhist Psychology and related approaches to spirituality, therapy and personal growth.

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