Do you want to learn Samskritam on the go? Samskrita Bharati Canada has a unique solution
28th July 2021 – For the lovers of Dev-Vaani, Samskritam, it comes as a pleasant surprise that Samskrita Bharati Canada has launched its unique project ‘Samskrit On Wheels’. The program was officially launched last week on 22nd July 2021 by the President of Indian Council for Cultural Relations, Dr. Vinay Sahasrabuddhe and the Indian High Commissioner to Canada, Ajay Bisaria.
To know more about this program, we reached out to Harsh Thakkar from Samskrita Bharati Canada. We asked him some questions about the program. Here are the excerpts.
HTC: Can you brief us about this new program?
HT: Samskritam on Wheels (SoW) is world’s FIRST Sanskrit mobile library-cum-exhibition where Samskrit language learners/enthusiasts will be able to experience Samskritam near their doorstep. In the first phase, there are books and activities that several GTA school children (close to 200), who are already enrolled in International. Language Program through various public-school boards will be able to enjoy.
HTC: What kind of books would be available?
HT: All Samskrit language books are available on our online bookstore – http://store.samskritabharati.ca/ plus many specimen copies that received from Bharat (India) through the help of Consulate General of India, Toronto office. There are books of various types – for all age groups and learners – from beginners to advanced. There are story and activity books for children. Currently, we have 100+ titles. And we will also try our best to get other titles based on demand/requests from Samskrit supporters.
HTC: At how many different locations is this program available at the moment?
HT: At present, as part of the first phase, mobile library will have many stops with pre-defined ‘calendar’ (days/times) within Greater Toronto Area. Based on the response and feedback we would like to expand the geographical reach as well numbers/times for these spots as well. And once we make progress, we aspire to go beyond the province of Ontario too and cover Canada – from coast to coast! SoW webpage will soon have the details – https://samskritabharati.ca/sow
HTC: How can one access the library? Do the readers need any card or registration? Any prior appointment is needed?
HT: Yes – more details will be soon updated on https://samskritabharati.ca/sow
HTC: What information material would be provided to Canadians, especially who do not know any Bharatiya Bhashas (Indian Languages)?
HT: As such many students (children) enrolled in various School board (Intl. language) programs within Greater Toronto Area are learning संस्कृतम् (Samskritam) language from scratch. Even though they are from families of Indian origin they may not be well versed with any bhaartiya bhaasha (Indian language). Keeping them in mind – we do have various books/activities where we make use of ‘transliteration’ (for assisting them in reading) – listening and speaking can anyway be attempted naturally (way any new born starts learning his/her mother tongue). However, we do want to keep away from ‘translation’ method to help learners in the long run.
HTC: Any other relevant information you want to share about this program?
HT: If you do have time and/or energy to volunteer/support kindly reach out to us at sow@SamskritaBharati.ca – we cannot go farther without community support!