- FAQ / Q&A
Following the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and 10-meter high tsunami that hit northeastern Japan on Friday, March 11, 2011, AMURT & AMURTEL worked in the coastal towns of Sendai, Tamajo, Shichigahama and Tagajo, serving the elderly by clearing their houses and providing psycho-social programs for the internally displaced people in the camps managed by the local authorities. A large influx of Ananda Marga members from many areas of Japan sacrificed their limited free time to volunteer.
As well as clearing mud and detritus from homes and cleaning parks and beaches, AMURT & AMURTEL ran children’s programs including games and English classes, distributed bicycles to schoolchildren and elderly left grounded by the tsunami, and generally offered emotional support to anyone in need by listening to their stories and plans for the future.
Baan Dada is an Ananda Marga children’s home on the Thai-Burmese border. It started in 1994 in an effort to protect the growing number of orphaned and disadvantaged children in the area. Many refugees and migrant families moved to this area due to poverty, disease and political repression by the Burmese military government.
There are two dadas at Baan Dada who are responsible for the development of the children, the home and many community-based projects in the area.
The main objective is to empower the children through education, both formal and non-formal. They are encouraged to learn many subjects including music, handicraft, art, language and technical skills. The children are taught to practise vegetarianism and respect all people, creatures and religions, based on the Neohumanist philosophy of love for all created beings of the world.
Baan Dada supports the local area by providing jobs for single mothers and families, who help care for the children and assist with farming, construction and weaving projects.
The home is proactive in helping itself. The children draw cards and bookmarks to sell, and take part in musical, cultural dance and yoga performances. Baan Dada grows many fruits and vegetables, and have planted rubber trees for future harvest. Of course, we also welcome support from volunteers and donors.
Take a look at this documentary on Baan Dada:
…and a music video by the children:
Vietnam, with its 90 million inhabitants, is developing a vibrant yoga scene and about 80 percent of the yoga centers in Hanoi are run by Ananda Marga or AM related centers. Needless to say there is a high demand for qualified yoga teachers. In August Dada Shankarsanananda from Ananda Marga Yoga Academy (Singapore) conducted advanced yoga training in Hanoi to 150 yoga teachers.