LEAD PrayanaLEAD Stories

One of the best journey of my life – Swaroop Kotagi


Life is a beautiful journey, as someone said it rightly. I Swaroop Kotagi from VSM college of Nippani, was the very luckiest person to be part of LEAD Prayana 2K20 along with other 79 participate across the country. One of the journeys which I heard most of the time. It boosted me to be a performance in life where success and failure are second in life. I was eagerly waiting to experience whole new things in my life.

19th of January, the day when Prayana begins. It was an awesome movement for me to meet students from different places with different cultural backgrounds and we had an endless conversation in the VTU Belagavi. By the afternoon we got our Prayana KIT which was a Green signal for us that Prayana had begun. By the evening we got ready and gathered for the KICK-OFF session. All my courage and excitement were at their peak. In our very first session, we had an Interaction with Prof. Karisiddappa, Vice-Chancellor VTU. He said that Life is a colorful journey but it depends on us, what color we choose to fill our lives and make them beautiful. And then he shared his Life journey with us saying that day by day we have to dream big and achieve it. And then after the KICK-OFF session, we had a culture night full of entertainment.

The next morning we had exercise and after the exercise here comes my favorite part of Prayana, Jiving dance to the rhythm and enjoyed it a lot. Then we traveled to the AEQUS industry where I got to know how the unity of the employees had made it Grow to its peak. One of the few industries in the world which produces parts of Airplanes. Then in the evening, we meet Mr. Mahesh Jadhav, a social worker and the founder of Mahesh Foundation. This NGO takes care of HIV-positive children and provides free Education to them and along with them, the NGO also provides free education to slum children. Mr. Mahesh taught us the world is Home for everyone so, we should take care of each other and have empathy within us to make the world a better place. To make something change in society, we don’t need any big platform or opportunity, we can begin it with a Small move within us which can later turn into a big success. An Auto-driver brought this thought to my mind. Mr. Manjunath an Auto-driver in Belagavi who have saved more than 150 lives by providing transport facility to needy patient and works day and night. His commitment and passion had made him a Real Hero. The next day, early in the morning we traveled to Hubli to visit Akshaya Patra. The foundation provides The Mid-day Meals full of nutrition and encourages the rural children to get an education. Feeding over 1.7 million children across the country with more than Hundreds of Food Production Units in the country. We had breakfast which was so much tasty as it was prepared by Akshaya Patra. Then our whole day went on a Farm visit. Got to the modern user technology in today’s farming where Deshpande foundation is helping the farmers in Hubli and Dharwad for better cultivation of Crops throughout the year.  

The whole night we traveled to Heggodu having fun on the bus, singing, and dancing. In Heggodu we had a visit to Kinnara Mela the Theatre, Charaka Desi clothes manufacturers, Hongirana the school. The day was full of learning and exploring. In Kinnara Mela we had an Interaction with Dr. K.G.krishnamurthy who teaches the ancient and original Martial Arts named Kalaripayattu and trains the youth, even we got chances to learn a few arts. Then we visited the Charaka the industry there the clothes are produced by using ancient techniques and using Natural color. Even Charaka’s beautiful handmade embroidery works with a variety of Different. Then we traveled to visit the Hongirana the School which runs with its way of Learning where children are thought with fun-filled learning in beautiful classes where children perform the practical experiment, music, and sports. This school made me go back to my school days.

Then in the evening, we saw the play of Kinnara Mela the beautiful play that highlights the animal’s life. It was the first play I saw in a life full of joy and it was awesome. I got to know that theatre is best than any movies we watch. Theatre plays help people to connect with the emotion of people and highlight the history and day-to-day life. The next morning we were in Manipal University where Students from all over the world come to learn and build their careers! Then we explored the MAHE campus. Later in the afternoon, we visited the Heritage Village in Manipal which was an awesome place to discover our Indian ancient lifestyle and architectural building, and soon this place took me back in Time. In the evening we Prayanees enjoyed a lot on maple beach and had a lot of fun, with dance, jiving, task and punishment endless moments. Then the whole day it was awesome as in night had reflection share our moments and learning of the day where we all got to know each other more and more when we shared our experiences and learnings.

The next morning we traveled to Dharmasthala and we had our first interaction of the day with Dr.Veerendra Heggade, He said we the Youths are the future and it’s our responsibility to perform our duties and make our country grow. Then we explored the car Museum, Ugrana, SKDRDP, and Interaction with Dr.L.Manjunath, Ratnamanasa, SDM secondary school, and then performed the Street play on Plastic-free India in front of Temple. Then the next morning it was a Good beginning as we performed Yoga and then we had some Good activities spending Good time with other Prayanees knowing their aims, strength and a lot more things which helped us to build our bond stronger and stronger. The second day in Prayana we explored an again a lot more places Ratnagiri betta, RUDSET, SDM campus, SIRI, and De-Addiction center Dharmasthala the entire two days in Dharmasthala was full of exploring and learning I can’t explain those all things in words, one just need to see and learn it.

Then next morning our journey was full of responsibility and duties as we were supposed to Celebrate Republic day in ALVA institution Moodabidri as we reached the Alva campus the first thing I saw was the Campus as Decorated with the Tri-colors the roads balloons and lot more things it was a great feeling for me to celebrate Republic Day in ALVA campus along with thirty thousand students on campus with honorable Guests Mr.Annamalai. It was awesome to see the 25000 NCC personnel parade I got goosebumps as it cannot be shared in words at Moodabidri. Later enjoyed the Breakfast and then we had an Interaction session with Mr. Mohan Alva the founder of the Alva foundation. His talk was inspiring and I still remember he said that Education, knowledge and. Wisdom is their main treasure in everyone’s life. It was the best Interaction with him. Then after the session, we had to start our journey towards Mysuru as it was a too-long journey “We had the activity of sharing our Life story then we found inspiration around us, all the Prayanees with all different life journeys and learning. Got to know that everyone in Life has Up and downs and have faced many barriers and some of them have overcome through barriers. Some have a breakdown and some have stood up to fight for survival. I have no words to express how wonderful this activity was. It helps me to know the people and their past. As every one of us is strong and bolt, our life journey might be different but our aim is the same, to stand strong achieve something better for us and even for society and be a better Human.

As we cried together understanding someone’s pain and laughed together on someone’s joyfully journey. We all have Life but we go through different journeys this activity made me grow stronger and bolt to my future. It was one of the most beautiful best parts of life and Prayana. At midnight we reached Mysuru then were was a beautiful morning was waiting for us with all new Hopes, learning, and vibes. On this day we had a visit to Infosys Mysuru an IT training hub of Infosys and got a chance to explore the Infosys campus and its beautiful eco-friendly campus with all facilities and infrastructure. We had an Interaction with Mr. Sundar. K.S the associate vice-president of IMS Academy in Infosys who shared the store of Infosys, his passion, integrity, and intelligence of leaders of Infosys made Infosys grow one of the World’s top IT companies after an awesome time in Infosys. We had visited Kaliyuva mane the school which runs to educate the poor children with all the modern technology. Not even I ever imagined that such a beautiful school exist. This school not educate the children but also have children to lead their life. Playing With the children made me realize that education can make life easier.  

Then the next morning we traveled to Bangalore the IT capital of India, in Bangalore, we had visited Samarthanam Trust, the school for disabled children this place was most inspiring to me and I love it a lot. This school provides Education to disable children and even helps them to bring out the best talent of children. I wound not these children disabled, I would love to these Children’s are special Abled children. Children of this school learn, Sing, dance and perform lots of things this was an Eye-opener for me. If these children can do their best, then why can’t I. I never wanted to leave this but need to move on. By the evening we had a small interaction with Ex-prayanee who shared their experience in LEAD and about their Startups. Then the most awaited session of prayana had begun Ravi D. Channanavar, IPS officer SP of Bangalore rural having Interaction with them was like some dream come true. He has filled me with inspiration and motivation the endless interaction with him was the Best interaction I ever had. We meet the Solo Traveler Mrs. Chandana and Mr. Sunil with whom we had climbed the Hill at night and in the morning we climbed the Hill to enjoy the beauty of the Sun-rise after the energetic climb. We traveled to the birthplace sir Visvesvaraya and got a chance to see the collection of things used by Sir Visvesvaraya. Then we traveled to the Vishal farm and products where got chances to work on the farm and to know how challenging the farming is, then we Enjoyed the Best food ever. Then we had traveled to the Factory of Vishal farm and products. It was beautiful to see how the packing and preparation of pickles are done. As the next day, we were on a village visit. We all were in someone’s home in the village and worked the whole day and had fun and joy while working.  

Meanwhile, we visited the SGB Govt College Ankalkoti and got to know about the DET Skilling program called ELEVATE and performing the Street play on domestic violence. Then back village enjoyed all the night with family members and Then time to say goodbye which was hard for us. Then next morning we traveled to Kalkeri Sangeet Vidyalaya school where the poor children not only get an education but also are taught Hindustan music along with art and Dance. This is run by one of the Foreigners Mr. Adam Woodward who got inspired by Indian culture and tradition to run this school, he shared the story of KSV and its success. Later we performed someone the community work and enjoyed the wonderful vibes in Kalkeri. Then here we go to the Annual celebration of Lead Yuva Summit in Hubli. Yuva Summit is the celebration of a Leader’s success, students across the country have gathered in Hubli to celebrate Yuva-Summit. The day was full of learning meeting many entrepreneurs, Leaders, and Proud Alumni of Lead ever session was filled with full of endless Learning and Best initiative of Leader’s were celebrated by Project showcase and having Interaction with all other students, the award ceremony, joyful Flash mob and lot more things it’s was an indescribable day in my life. Then we marched a rally to Infosys Hubli to have an Evening with legends it was a wonderful evening where we enjoyed the performance and the session. In this whole joinery full learning, we didn’t realize that the end of this journey was near we were together all the time, sharing and caring. The next day after the Feedback session, It was a movement to breakdown when I realized the journey is about to end, we look at each other with eyes full of tears, but still smiling and hugging each other and wished that this movement wound never end saying don’t go. But it was beautiful learning for me by building up the beautiful bond between us.

Every one of us has been a beautiful Human being throughout the journey and made it Great days in our life. LEAD Prayana thanks to Deshpande Foundation for organizing such a wonderful event. I would like to say if get a chance to go on LEAD Prayana then never miss it. It’s a life-changing journey.

Written by – Swaroop Kotagi

Email ID – swaroopkotagi29@gmail.com

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