His Cold Bare Hands

It was a hot summer afternoon. All she can remember is hanging out in the living room, watching Clifford. She heard a knock on the door, of course she was told not to answer it, because you never know who it may be. Her grandmother was home, she walked up to the door, and she heard her cousin’s voice. Excited as could be, little did she know her life was about to change. Read more

Food Bank Seva

This was the second time I volunteered at the Sac Food Bank with my peers. This time we volunteered at a different location and helped through different tasks. My task was to make bags of  light bulbs and distribute them to the people. My peers worked in truck, they bagged dairy products. It was interesting working along other people from different locations. The other task I did was bagging the appropriate squash. Some of the squash was ruined so as I bagged the squash I had to analyze and toss the bad squash away. Later, I unfolded the boxes. As other volunteers distributed the food items, it looked like a mini farmers market. Overall, this experience was great because we got to meet new volunteers as well as contribute by using our skills. Manpreet Kaur is an active member of Misl Sacramento and the Sikh Honor and Service Society. She is a junior at NP3 in Sacramento. 

A Different Outlook

Joining the Sacha Sauda Seva was one of the events that have changed my entire outlook on and attitude towards the life. Before I used to think that every human being on earth is capable of taking care of his or her self. But when I went to the very first event Misl Bay Area, Sacha Sauda in February, I saw the reality, which was painful to the eyes. Hi, this is Karan Singh. I’m currently living in Dublin, CA. I’m going to school full time for majoring in computer science and along with that, I’ve a part time job to support myself financially. My friends and I have been going to Fremont Gurdwara every Sunday night since last four years and helping there in seva at night. During the seva last year, I met Aman. Aman and I became pretty good friends in just a short time of period. Over time, Aman would tell my friends and me about Jakara Movement. In January when he first told about us their new Sacha Sauda event, I was very excited to team up and contribute in it. We ordered pizzas along with that we provided salad, drinks and bread. Then we went out to the location at Saint James Park in San Jose, CA. The moment we reached there, I was stun by seeing so many homeless people. Some of them are sitting on the grass bare feet; some of them are sleeping at the place, looking tired, starving for food. They have no idea when and where they will get food. When I looked in their eyes, they had some type of hope that they were looking for. As we started offering out the food, a big line of people was created just in seconds. As others and starting giving out the food, I’d hear out comments like “god bless you,” “thank you,” these comments made me feel like I’m blessed. We all were putting smiles on their faces and it was so pleasing to my heart after seeing that. I was very delighted and pleased after the event. I was feeling proud of myself after what I did the other day. I didn’t participate this event for money or because of my friends; I joined this event because I felt good from inside. It felt like I was doing something to help and change the society even though it was very little. Every change starts from little contributing from one person and I think Jakara Movement have started this change. I’d be so glad if this event continues for long time because it can provide help to the people out there who really need help. We did the same thing again on March 1, 2015 and it was incredible experience. Looking forward to contribute more in future to Sacha Sauda events. Karan Singh is an active sevadaar and member of Misl Bay Area.

Insights & Information

My name is Gurmun Singh and I just wanted to reminisce about the college workshop that took place in Sacramento. As junior year is finishing up and AP tests, the SAT and ACT, and applying for colleges are closing in, it becomes a stressful time for us. With this college workshop, I was provided with information that I may have not received until I was in college and having this early exposure truly helps out. This workshop cleared out many of the myths of college and provided me with great knowledge of how college works. Being able to understand how to apply for financial aid and the benefits of applying to scholarships is valuable. Not only did this workshop provide us with information on how to apply for colleges, it gave us an early insight into the college life and also how to avoid being pressurized into things that you don’t want to take a part in. Hearing the college experiences from different backgrounds, such as one who went to a UC and stayed at the dorms and one who went to a CSU and stayed at home, gave different views on the college life and each perspective was helpful. One big thing that I took away from this workshop was that the college that I end up at is not the person that I am because college is a place for education. As I advance onto my senior year and start the dreadful process of college applications, I will keep my confidence high and remember the advice that was given at this workshop to do my best.  Thank you to Jakara Movement for putting this workshop up in Misl Sacramento. Gurmun Singh in a junior at Sheldon High School in Elk Grove. He is a member of Misl Sacramento and has been a part of the Bhujangi Youth Academy. 

How BC Sikhs Found Their Voice Again and the Youth Realized Theirs

Thursday, April 16, 2015.  The center of Sikh-world turned towards Ross Street Gurdwara.  The masands and committee members of the Gurdwara showed they were morally bankrupt and willing to lock out the sangat to allow in a tyrant; Modi, himself, a man with little moral scruples showed that the corrupt system he represents will sell out farmers and the poor for the corrupt corporatists and their multinationalist friends, a key principle for all fascists; the Canadian government, long heralding its concerns for human rights, showed that these are largely hollow now and can be sold for promises of trade deals; however, a coalition of 20+ “Communities United against Narendra Modi” showed that they would not be silenced in the face of injustice.  Beneath all of these happenings, there were some stirrings that may have historic ramifications.  April 16, 2015 showed that the Sikhs of British Columbia have a path open to them for finding their political voice again and the day may mark a turning point for the Sikh youth of BC just realized the power of theirs.  They had a choice to make - #MewaOrBela - and those that stood, shouted, and were even arrested outside of Ross Street Gurdwara – indeed showed that they are the descendants of Mewa Singh. Read more

Live from Ross Street Gurdwara

Today we stand with the Communities United Against Modi live from Ross Street Gurdwara.  We will be live-sharing pictures and videos as we receive them.  We stand with all the Mewa Singhs of British Columbia - Vancouver, Richmond, Abbotsford, Surrey, and all the rest - united against the Indian State and its fascism, united with all communities.  While the massands of Ross Street Gurdwara are providing the red carpet, with the Sangat we will be providing the people's voice.  Keep visiting and sharing with your friends.  If you have any images from the event - feel free to send to info@jakara.org Read more

The Descendants of Mewa Singh or Bela Singh? A Generational Decision for British Columbia’s Sikh Community

Generation-defining events (approximately every 25 years) for the Sikhs have been centered in Punjab: in the 1940s, it was the partition; in the 1960s, it was the birth of the Punjabi Suba; in the 1980s and 1990s, it was the Sikh independence movement.  For the generation of the 2010s, we are at the precipice.  While Punjab will always be the center, still the diaspora has always played a prominent role.  This week ground zero is British Columbia! Nowhere in the diaspora has been more critical than in British Columbia, Canada.  From the birth of the Ghadar movement to bringing voice to the Khalistani movement, BC has been at the center of Sikh activism.  However, while the lower mainland has been home to some of the most inspiring Sikhs whom we remember with pride, it has also been the grounds for some of the worst moments for the community as well.   Read more

5 Things You Can Do On the International Day Against Victim-Blaming

For those that may not have known, April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM).  We kicked off our efforts in sharing an Open Letter to the Sikh Community.  We hope you all had a chance to read it.  Today on April 3, we are participating in "International Day Against Victim Blaming."   Read more

Jakara and Sikh Environmental Day

  Jakara Sevadars rallied at the Ravidas Temple in Selma, California to start a new recycling initiative in the Fresno valley in an attempt to kick of Sikh Environment Day. The Jakara Movement along with The Sikh Council of Fresno united to distribute recycling bins to all the local Gurdwaras. The Jakara Movement sevadar Harnoor Singh led the march for recycling along with Bhinda Singh. "Well I was a part of the Green Gurdwara camp in the past, and we told kids how they could be more environmentally conscious in our Gurdwaras, well here is a real opportunity to get the work started". Harnoor Singh has been a part of Misl Fresno for 3 years now and takes part in many Jakara events such as, Bhujangi, Jakara Juniors, and our Meal Sharing Programs.  "We don't get a chance to do stuff like this back where I'm from, This is a great opportunity to be an active part of my local Sangat". Bhinda Singh, a Selma native, and one of our newer members all the way from Scotland was overcome with excitement as he carried two recycling bins over his shoulders and made his way over to his first Gurdwara pit stop.  If your looking for a way to get more involved in your local community please click here and get engaged with your local Sangat today!!!      

Powerful Performances

“Kaur Voices” took place on Feb 21 at the UC Berkeley campus. For some performers, the night was a quantum leap - the start of a burgeoning relationship with artistry, the end to their silence. For others, the stage was a regularity - another story in a book, another opportunity to grasp. But whether the performers were new or experienced, Singhs or Kaurs, poets/poetesses or artists, the third annual “Kaur Voices” (organized by UC Berkeley’s SSA) culminated into, what can safely be said as, a night of ten powerful performances about topics that desperately needed to be discussed amongst the Punjabi, Sikh diaspora. The underlying theme of the event, “The Talk We Never Had,” was reflected in thought-provoking pieces about feminism, self-love, identity, female infanticide, Sikhi, and other personal stories that resonated with an audience of about 75 people. “Kaur Voices” was not limited to any age, gender, or ethnicity. Students from high school and college were welcomed to join as performers or audience members. These conversation-starting events are deeply important because they provide a platform for critical thinking, healthy discourse, and positive development. Navya Kaur is a high school junior, a rising journalist, and the first high school performer at Kaur Voices!  


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