Like any personal relationship, we have to cultivate our relationship with the Lord. If there’s someone walking down the street we want to get to know, we can’t do it by just watching them walk by each day. We have to engage in conversation with them, inquire as to who they are, and begin to do nice things for them. That way a relationship can develop. In the same way, we have to progressively develop our relationship with Krsna via the various devotional processes. If we just take darshan without offering direct service, we can’t get the full benefit. Fortunately, Srila Prabhupada has taught us the many wonderful ways we can engage in that service mood by chanting to the Deities, bringing them gifts, helping to make their environment beautiful, hearing about Their Pastimes, etc., etc. The road may be long, but it’s so sweet to walk down.
In 2003 our value education program was giving achievement certificates to our students in a public venue. At that time a government minister requested Radha Krishna Prabhu to help the government by distributing food to the ghetto schools of Mumbai where children were suffering horribly from hunger and malnutrition. After organizing with our Chowpatty congregation and receiving the blessings of the leaders of ISKCON in India the project began by feeding 900 students per day. The satisfaction of the students was overwhelming. As of today the Chowpatty congregation runs four state of the art kitchens in the Mumbai area and distributes nutritious Prasad in ultra hygienic facilities to over 120,000 children per day. Every month the number is substantially increasing.
Food for Life was born more than 30 years ago, elderly Indian Swami, known as A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. In 1974 when watching a group of village children fighting with dogs over scraps of food, the Swami became upset and told his students, “No one within ten miles of a temple should go hungry… I want you to immediately begin serving food.”  In response to his plea, members of ISKCON and volunteers around the world were inspired to expand that original effort into a global network of kitchens, cafes, vans, and mobile services, all providing free food, and establishing daily delivery routes in many large cities around the world. Since that day, Food for Life has grown into the world’s largest vegan/vegetarian food relief program.
Food For Life volunteers have provided food for the poor and homeless during several recent disasters. 2008 – Food For Life served freshly cooked vegan meals to survivors of Hurricane Gustav and Hurricane Ike in the southern United States. 2007 – Food For Life volunteers were on the ground to feed many of the hundreds of thousands of survivors who were left homeless after the deadliest cyclone to hit Bangladesh in a decade. 2005 – Following the earthquake in Pakistan, Food For Life volunteers worked side-by-side with local military and police personnel, distributing drinking water, food, tents and blankets. 2005 – When Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast with deadly force, Food For Life volunteers were among the first responders, distributing up to 800 freshly cooked meals daily to needy families in Mississippi and Texas. 2004 – 2005 A killer Tsunami wreaked incomprehensible devastation in South Asia, resulting in the deaths of nearly 200,000 people. Food For Life volunteers joined the relief effort on the very day of the disaster, providing thousands of meals daily, along with medical care, clothing, and shelter in Sri Lanka and India. 1990s – Food For Life volunteers risked their lives in the war-torn countries of Chechnya, Bosnia and Abkhazia, distributing food to needy and frightened civilians.
ISKCON aims to provide information and resources on Hinduism, Vedanta and Vaishnavism to the academic and educational communities. See ‘The Heart of Hinduism’ website
It publishes literature, provides guest speakers and arranges educational visits to Hindu temples, and provides artefacts and other resources.
It also provides lecturers for initial teacher and in-service training, runs a free correspondence service for students and teachers, and arranges training, seminars, open days and resource evenings, as well as cultural events of music, dance and drama.
ISKCON Educational Services’ own web site has details of the full range of resources and training offered.
HOSPICE SERVICES IN VRINDAVANA Although modern medicine is making tremendous advancement in disease management, there are many cases that reach a state of incurability. Death is inevitable but arrives slowly, accompanied by severe pain, discomfort and emotional crises both to the patient and the family. Globally, hospice is a facility for such end-stage patients who do not need active medical intervention society, today is massively dependent on oil.
Vrindavan Institute of Palliative Care is a hospice center that offers terminally ill patients comfort and the highest possible quality of life in the serene environment of the holy town of Vrindavana. Pain and physical discomfort is managed by modern medicines, while the patient and relatives are offered emotional support through counseling and prayers. There is special and personalized care at the time of dying.
Purpose: Started in 2007, the hospice is designed for those in the final stages of a terminal illness and utilizes a holistic approach to palliative care. Its purpose is to alleviate pain and ease the discomfort of physical symptoms while also addressing the distress and fear encountered by ailing devotees.
Opened in 1998, Bhaktivedanta Hospital is dedicated to giving complete healing to devotees. Its vision is to cure the disease of death, with its prime objectives being to preach in a creative way through the medical profession, to create an opportunity for staff members, to work together and to earn their livelihood within a pure environment, to serve the Vaisnavas
The Spiritual Care Department at Bhaktivedanta is a dedicated group of doctors, executives, event coordinators, spiritual care assistants, and other supporting staff that reaches out to the patients and helps them through a spiritual approach. The Department is based on the understanding that all “cures” begin with the healing of the mind. While treating the patient for all physical ailments, the mind is also provided comfort and emotional care.
Srila Prabhupada Ji Maharaj emphasized to spread the Vedic Knowledge amongst masses. He taught us how to know the God and by taking His shelter only we can live joyous life.
He also emphasized to establish glorious temples all over the world for spreading vedic knowledge. For this purpose, he went to America in 1965 at the age of 69 and established the INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS (ISKCON) in 1966.
He devoted himself in such a manner that during 12 years of efforts, he established 108 temples and other preaching centers worldwide.
“Holy Cow!” We’ve all heard that expletive enough times, but what on earth is holy about a cow? To find that out, we need to go to India.
In the Indian villager’s agrarian lifestyle, conserving natural resources is an integral part of daily existence. He uses nature’s gifts directly to manufacture all his necessities, from his mud hut dwelling to his home-spun clothes. But the most important feature of village conservation is protecting cows. Each homestead keeps at least one cow, and the animal is considered the most useful of all domestic beasts. In fact both cow and bull are seen as indispensable in rural India, in other words to 90% of the country’s population. Eating only grass, which costs nothing to produce, the cow in turn produces milk that provides nearly all the nutrients we need. One cow produces more milk than a whole family can drink in one day. What is not drunk is turned into yoghurt, cheese, butter and ghee (butterfat) – the latter being the basis for so many exquisite Indian sweetmeats and savouries.
The Krishna consciousness movement is developing farming communities around the world. At New Vrindaban there are cows. The results of the gentle Vedic method are evident there, where the cows peacefully produce first class milk.
In the end of the 19th century there was a severe drought in some areas of Maharastra and Gujarat. Many died and hundreds of children became helpless orphans. A group of philanthropic Vaishnavas along with a British patron named Lady Northcote formed a trust and opened an orphanage called Lady Northcote Hindu Orphanage.
In 1986 Srinatji Prabhu (N.D.Desai) was unexpectedly given the position of the managing trustee of the orphanage. After some time, due to corruption in the previous management, the care of the children was given to our devotees. Both the congregation and the brahmacaris served together to care for the children. Gradually it became a gurukula. Many of the children have become devotees, and now grown up have graduated college or have careers. Many work at Bhaktivedanta Hospital. About a dozen got initiated.One of the orphans Rupa Raghunath Prabhu eventually became the head pujari of Radha Gopinath temple. And another Rupa Goswami Prabhu became the head pujari of Pune Temple. Rasik Murari Prabhu is working in Pune Patrons department and Mathuradev Prabhu is working in the Hospital Administration department.
Bhaktivedanta Old Age House is an initiative taken by the Devotee Care Committee, Tirupati to provide care for the elderly devotees of ISKCON. The project is planned in Tirupati, about 10 km from Sri Sri Radha Govinda Astasakhi Lotus Temple, Tirupati.
The Vision: Bhaktivedanta Care Home (BVCH) will be a provider of all-around support and security to the esteemed elderly devotees of ISKCON all over the world, and an abode of spiritual retreat for devotees where they can spend a peaceful and Krsna-oriented life in their old age
1. To provide physical, mental and spiritual care to elderly devotees in terms of Peace and security 2) Eternal bliss in the form of divine love 3) No ties of dependency 4) Nutritious food for a healthy body 5) Facilities for a strong mind and a serene heart BVCH is a charitable society and a service-oriented organization that envisions establishing a serene atmosphere and a homely environment. BVCH aims to provide excellent facilities to the elderly for their tranquility.