ACTIVITIES OF BHAVANA U3A

Workshops and seminars on technology, computers/internet, investment avenues, women empowerment.

Health-care :Health camps for elders, physiotherapy centers and yoga sessions.

Leisure : Excursions, social get togethers.

Cultural & Spiritual : Community gathering & celebration of festivities. spiritual discourses and visit to pilgrimage places.

Charitable Activities : Educational assistance to poor meritorious students, rural development by providing basic amenities in select villages.

For news of our activities, please subscribe to the newsletter U3A PATRIKA at http://u3aindia.org/patrika

ORGANISATION

President :

Mr. Vinod Kumar Shukla ,
Retired Chief General Manager,
U.P. Power Corporation Ltd.
He is also the Founder Secretary General of Bhavana.

   Vice President :     

Mr. Satya Deo Tiwari,
Branch Manager (Retired)
Union Bank of India

Secretary :

Mr. Ashok Kumar Malhotra ,
Retired Chief Project Manager,
Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd., Lucknow.
He is also Dy. General Secretary of Bhavana.

Members :

1-Er Satpal Singh
S E (Retd) U P Irrigation Deptt
2-Er S C Vidyarthi
J E (Retd) U P PWD
3-Sri Purshottam Keswani
Sr Manager(Retd) Central bank Of India
4-Col (Retd)R N Kalra
5-Sri M K Jha
Dy Director (Retd) Central Silk Board


What is U3A ?


Universities of the Third Age
Retired, but not retiring, and definitely not yet tired


U3A or UTA stands for University of Third Age. U3A is an international movement, the concept originated in western countries in seventies and is directed towards active and graceful ageing through involving elders in lifelong learning and sharing of activities/ideas with little or no cost, no prior qualifications, no rigid time schedule, no exams and no degrees. U3A do not run like formal university courses . With the passage of time the concept has also broadened to include various other activities of Elders in other parts of the world. In Indian context THIRD AGE corresponds/refers to Third Ashram of life cycle propounded by Manu as " Vanaprastha Ashram", i.e. period of age after 50 years, which can be deemed as 60 years in modern context.


BACKGROUND of U3A (Ageing and the joy of longevity)


The elderly population is fast increasing due to advances in medical sciences, better care of elderly, improvement in nutrition, late marriages and later child bearing, more people now practicing family planning. In advanced countries of the world this population is around 50% of the workforce. About 25% population of Japan is of older persons above 60 years age and in China it is 11%. Today 60% of world’s older people live in Asia and by 2025 it will increase to 75%. Recent surveys have indicated that 50% people above 50 have one or more diseases.. Care of elderly has gained tremendous priority and importance during the past couple of decades. Ageing is no longer a minor issue and soon in many countries, elderly will outnumber the young. However the problems of elderly is overshadowing the joy of longevity and affect the social, economic and physical well being of individuals, their families and their society. First question on Ageing was raised at UN in 1968 by a small country Malta. Later an Institute on Ageing was set up by U N in 1988 in Malta. International plan on ageing was erected during 47th session of general assembly of UNO in 1992. The Asia and Pacific population conference held in 1992 in Indonesia observed; in 21st century world population will experience ageing at a rate never before experienced in the history of mankind. In this sense the 21st century could be called the "ERA OF POPULATION AGEING". The conference recommended prolonged productivity and self reliance of older people. It maintains that Ageing need not be a negative experience.


EMERGENCE & GROWTH OF U3A


The first U3A came into existence in Toulouse, France in 1973 at the University of Social Sciences. Prof. Pierre Vellas conceived the idea of offering third agers a programme of activities commensurate with the conditions, needs and aspirations of this age group. After modest beginnings, several universities set up programmes for older people. After Belgium, U3A spread in Spain, Switzerland, Poland, Canada, Sweden, Italy, USA, England , Germany, South America, Africa, Australia, Japan and China. Professor Pierre Vellas founded the International Association of Universities of the Third Age (IAUTA) in 1976. The UNO has already recognised International Association of Third Age Universities (IAUTA) and created a separate fund for the fast growing graying population. UNO has established National Institute of Ageing in Malta. U3A with no connections with universities also emerged by late 1970s with broadening of the scope to include early retirees, housewives, unemployed and those with disabilities.


ACTIVITIES OF U3A


U3As do not run like formal university courses and their activities vary according to membership, location and support by Government, NGOs etc. These include:


  • Organize seminars, workshops, camps and periodical meetings.
  • Studies and research on ways to improve the quality of life of elderly.
  • Short and long term training/educational programs.
  • Computer literacy, internet, multimedia, digital photography and mobiles.
  • Yoga, meditation, spiritual discourses, naturopathy, acupressure and acupuncture.
  • Health clubs, laughter clubs, games, music and libraries.
  • Courses on financial management, investment decisions, human rights and foreign languages.
  • Social services, environment protection, counseling and re-employment.
  • Other miscellaneous activities as per needs of particular groups.

LIFELONG LEARNING FOR GRACEFUL AGEING:(Learning later is living greater)


We all live in a world in which isolation is no longer possible. We should no longer acquire knowledge once for all, but learn how to build up a continually evolving body of knowledge all through life. Man wants to remake himself and wants to become something and do something. Lifelong learning is as old as human race itself. Prior to 90’s scientists thought that getting older was automatically accompanied by a mental decline in our brain functions. The recent researchers now reveal that it is possible to grow new brain cells at any age provided we undertake learning activities. Brain requires environmental enrichment at all times. By simulating your brain with lifelong learning you enjoy other advantages also. After 50's, rather than elders getting slow down and inactive from life and society, they should actually look forward to a period they can set off for adventure and exploring the wonderful world around us. Lifelong learning can be called the "Health club of Mind, Body and Spirit ". Learning for self enrichment and empowerment leads to better individual and social/mental health. It improves intellectual, social, spiritual and physical horizons. "A man rusts if he rests". Research and studies world over have revealed that, "Elderly people continuing to learn and work have overall higher health standard". "Old age can be creative or destructive. It is your choice to decide. Old age need not be painful and death may not be frightening. It is possible to learn in the days of Retirement." - Swami Chinmayananda Lifelong learning is a sort of reorientation for advancing age and wholesome life. This will enhance efficiency and contentment in the present and give strength, courage, purpose for the future. This will help elders acquire more knowledge and skills needed for ageing gracefully and with dignity. If elderly want to be in the main stream then their knowledge must remain up-to-date and keep pace with ongoing developments. Elders hesitate to attend classes with younger group and special education required by them is not available. There is need to develop specific and informal education, that is where the role of U3A’s comes in picture.


U3A MOVEMENT IN INDIA –ISU3A


The credit for bringing U3A movement in India and its growth goes to learned Prof. R.N. Kapoor. He, after a lot of study and research into the concept of U3A movement, launched Indian Society of U3A (ISU3A or ISUTA) on March 29, 2008 at Allahabad to integrate India’s Senior Citizens to those of other countries of world. He has been, since then, shouldering the responsibilities of its Founder Chairperson. His tireless work right across the Indian sub-continent has seen the growth of the U3A movement from one group to more than twenty in three years. Its Head Office is in Udaipur. Key office bearers are Dr. Sajjan Singh, the Executive Chair Person and Dr. T. M. Dak, the Secretary General. Though several organizations of senior citizens in India were already involved in the care and education of elderly but they were working in isolation and their efforts appeared to be far too inadequate. Hence the long felt need to integrate their activities was fulfilled by creation of ISU3A, rightly known as a networking conglomerate of voluntary bodies working for the cause of elderly. It has large number of Individual and Institutional members and is maintaining liaison with other U3A groups all over the world. "Bhavana" is also its Institutional Member. More information on ISU3A can be had from its website www.u3aindia.org . The biggest achievement of ISU3A on international scene has been the successful hosting of "World U3A Conference 2010 at Chitrakoot".


WORLD U3A


The mission of World U3A is to encourage international understanding and contacts for all active retired people everywhere. It does this through its internet activities rather than through a traditional organisation structure. It has no membership and is a totally free service. WORLD U3A exists to meet the challenges of the twenty-first century worldwide revolution in communications. It is acknowledged by its thousands of users to be a model of effective use of the Internet, and for that reason it believes it is "fit for purpose". Mr. TOM HOLLOWAY is the SECRETARY GENERAL .

Major functions and activities of World U3A managed by him are :-

  • Maintaining the www.worldu3a.org website, plus several other U3A websites.
  • Editing and issuing monthly newsletter:-
      SIGNPOST -items of interest and news mostly relating to UK and Australian U3A members
  • Maintaining and moderation of two worldwide discussion bulletin boards:-
     U3ASUPPORT -for technical matters
     U3A TALK -for general discussions of U3A or general matters
  • Running online projects to encourage international and inter-generation contacts worldwide.


WORLD CONFERENCE OF ELDERS HELD AT CHITRAKOOT, MP, INDIA ON FEBRUARY 8-10, 2010


ISU3A and World U3 A jointly organized a World Conference of Senior Citizens at Mahatma Gandhi Gramodaya Chitrakoot University ,Chitrakoot (M.P.) from 8th to 10th February, 2010. More than 90 delegates of senior citizens organizations of several countries and more than 600 delegates of those situated in almost all the states of India attended this conference. 22 delegates of BHAVANA attended this conference. Papers on the subjects related to the cause of elders were presented by two delegates of BHAVANA, Dr Narendra Deo and Dr. Avneesh Agarwal. The then Vice President of BHAVANA, Mr. R.K. Agarwal was unanimously elected Member of the Advisory Committee of ISU3As.
(For detailed Report of conference. PLZ CLICK HERE )