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JAINA Committees Overview
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JAINA'S COMMITTEES

ACADEMIC LIAISON: To promote programs and studies in Jain Philosophy at Academic Institutions in North America and to establish relations with them to promote the principles and awareness of Jainism. Through ISSJS hundreds of students in college and graduate school as well as teachers and professors in academia have travelled to India for Summer Studies in Jainism. Partnered with the Center for Jain Studies at Claremont Lincoln University.

To learn more please visit www.isjs.in and www.jain.claremontlincoln.org. Chairperson: Sulekh Jain - scjain@earthlink.net - (281) 494-7656.


ACADEMIC SCHOLARSHIP:
The Academic Scholarship Committee provides support for any bright, hard-working, goal-oriented, practicing Jain youth in North America to be able to afford to attend an institution of higher learning where they can develop their skills and talents, and eventually make the community, country and world a better place. This committee has created the JAINA Academic Scholarship Program (JASP) which has provided numerous need-based scholarships for high school seniors in North America. To learn more please go to www.jaina.org/jasp.

Chairperson: Udai Jain - scholarship@jaina.org - (281) 980-0741.


AHIMSAK ECO-VEGAN:
The Ahimsak Eco-Vegan committee, as an expression of ahimsa, supports the reduction and elimination of activities contributing to harm to living beings, global climate change and destruction of the planet. We support veganism as abstinence from eating, wearing, and using animal products such as meat, eggs, dairy products, honey, leather, and silk and do not support products that are marketed as "humane". To learn more please see www.jaina.org/ahimsakecovegan and www.veganjains.com.

Chairpersons: Jina Shah - jina.shah@gmail.com - (650) 296-3197 and Sanjay Jain - sanjayjain67@yahoo.com.


AWARDS: The Awards Committee is responsible for providing the JAINA Recognition Awards during each JAINA Convention for candidates who have provided a significant contribution to the Jain Community. There are three types of awards that are provided: JAINA Ratna (Lifetime Achievement) Award (1), JAINA Recognition award for Adults (10), and JAINA Recognition award for Youth (5). The criteria include contributions to their local Jain centers as well as to JAINA. To learn more about the awards committee please visit jaina.org/awards.

Chairperson: Manoj Dharamsi - mdharamsi@hotmail.com - (703) 620-9837.


CAMPUS OUTREACH:
The Campus Outreach Committee is committed to connecting Jain youth to local Jain Sanghs near their college campuses. It also guides the formation of Jain clubs on campuses and helps connect Jain college students to other nearby campuses. Additionally by working with YJA, YJP, and local sangh leaders, we hope to foster closer connections and participation between college students and their local Jain communities. To learn more about the program, please go to jaina.org/campusoutreach.

Chairperson: Mayha Parikh - mayha.parikh@gmail.com - (860) 833-2757.


CONSTITUTION: Is responsible and accountable for revisions of the JAINA Constitution and to ensure that other Jain Sanghs abide to the By-Laws instituted in the JAINA Constitution. This committee plays a key role in the governance of JAINA and Jain Sanghs across North America.

Chairperson: Manoj Dharamsi - mdharamsi@hotmail.com - (703) 620-9837.


CONVENTION: Is responsible for creating biennial conventions. Since 1981, JAINA Conventions have become a unique socio-religious event for the entire Jain community of North America. Our Jain Monks, Bhattaraks, Scholars, and Dignitaries from all over have graced these occasions. The 17th JAINA Biennial Convention took place in Novi, MI in partnership with the Jain Society of Greater Detroit in July 2013. The upcoming 18th JAINA Convention will take place in July 2015 in Atlanta, GA - with the theme “Jainism: World of Non-violence”. All Jains are requested to attend from July 2 - 5, 2015.  Learn more by going to: convention.jaina.org.

Convention Convenor: Ashok Domadia - ashokdomadia2009@gmail.com - (510) 979-9312.


EDUCATION: Provides Jain religious education and educational materials to Jain children, youths, and adults by conducting classes, workshop, seminars, and lectures at various Jain centers in North America and other countries. Prepares Jain Educational material for children, youth, and adults of North America. We also provide a medium for interactions among pathshala teachers of North America. The three main initiatives under the JAINA Education Committee are the publications of JAINA Education Pathshala Books, the coordination of the Jain Academic (JAB) Competitions, and the creation of Jain Elibrary. To learn more, go to jaina.org/education.

Chairperson: Pravin K. Shah - jainaedu@gmail.com - (919) 859-4994.


ELECTION: Is responsible for facilitating the election process of JAINA’s Executive Committee biennially. As part of the election process, this committee ensures that all Jain Sanghs’ are accurately represented into the voting process.

Chairperson: Anop Vora - vora6000@gmail.com - (585) 473-9290


FUNDRAISING: Our goal is to make JAINA financially stronger to better serve the Jain community in North America and abroad. It supports JAINA committees to promote the Jain way of life in North America, and allows the Jain community to serve the wider world. It is working to reach out and connect with Jain’s and non-Jains to inspire them to support JAINA and its activities. It is critical for JAINA to have an office and a manager available to help and support Jains in North America. Funds are requested to support JAINA’s many projects. We encourage everyone to contribute generously.

Chairperson: Jayesh Shah - jayeshshahmd@gmail.com - (626) 379-5590.


GOVERNMENT & INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS: This committee is successfully maintaining its relations at various levels with national and international governments including United Nation to help Jain community and JAINA. It is working to foster interaction and dialogue with other Jain Organizations throughout the world.

Chairperson: Tansukh Salgia - jainunity@yahoo.com - (740) 965-2627.


INTERFAITH: On an international level we have participated with Religions for Peace - International, Parliament of World Religions, World Jain Confederation, United Nations and the Roman Catholic Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue. On the national level we participate with RFP - USA, Intersection International, NCCI Calendar and others. Locally, our committee members reach out extensively with interfaith and multifaith organizations on a regular basis as well as on occasions like prayer services on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Thanksgiving Day, International Day of Peace and Human Rights Day. Visit jaina.org/interfaith to learn more.

Chairperson: Arvind Vora - avora@optonline.net - (631) 269-1167.


JAIN CENTER LIAISON: Our mission is to connect JAINA and all the Jain Centers in North America to strengthen the bonds between the two, and support local Jain centers. We have arranged meetings among local Jain center presidents and directors to share experiences, share ideas, and learn from each other. These were met with overwhelming enthusiasm from several Jain Center officers at the JAINA Conventions in 2011 in Houston and 2013 in Detroit. In between JAINA Conventions, we have also had several teleconferences. This has allowed us to strengthen the ties between JAINA and local centers.

Chairperson: Jayesh Shah - jayeshshahmd@gmail.com - (626) 379-5590.

JAIN DIASPORA: Jain Diaspora is the JAINA initiative to connect all the Jain communities living in 36 countries outside of India and thereby drive greater unity and cohesiveness in the global Jain community. JAINA feels the time is ripe for overseas Jain communities worldwide to better leverage our common identity, views and lifestyles by reaching out across borders and continents. The Jain Diaspora Conference (JDC) was held during the 2009 and 2011 JAINA Conventions.

Chairperson: Manish Mehta - manishm@comcast.net - (734) 668-0348.

JAIN MILAN: Jain Milan is an opportunity for Jain youths (age 21 and older) throughout North America and around the world to meet in person, to make friends, to engage in networking, to develop business contacts and to possibly find a life partner. Jain Milan believes in Jain family values and is working hard from last ten years to preserve these values. With Jain Milan, we hope to achieve our goal to preserve Jain traditions and values in our next generation and strengthen our community. In last ten years more than a thousand youths from all over the world have participated. Next Jain Milan is organized at the 2015 JAINA Convention in Atlanta, GA. Visit www.jainmilan.org or www.jaina.org (matrimonial) for further information.

Chairperson: Gunvant Shah - profgaryshah@gmail.com - (732) 253-7049.


JAIN NETWORK FORUM: The main goal of this service is to promote Jains to marry Jains and practice the principle of Jainism in day to day life. JNF maintains a large searchable database consisting of profiles of Jain candidates from USA, Canada, UK, India and many other countries.

Chairperson: Mukesh Doshi - jaina.jnf@gmail.com - (847) 517-2505.

JAINA HEADQUARTERS: Responsible for JAINA Office activities, coordination between JAINA's Executive committee and local Jain Sangh leaders, as well as communication with JAINA Committee Chairs and Project Leaders. This currently comprises of the JAINA Manager and our team of dedicated volunteers part of the JAINA Volunteer Corps (JVC).

JAINA Manager: Parth Savla - parth.savla@jaina.org - (510) 730-0204.


JIVDAYA: Following principle of ‘Live & Let Live”, Non-violence & Ahimsa are promoted. From generous donations of fellow Jains, animals in various Panjarapoles in India and USA are provided with food, shelter & medical needs and animal are saved from slaughter houses. More information is available at Jaina.org/Jivdaya.

Chairperson: Rita Sheth - ritashethcpa@gmail.com - (918) 398-6023.


LEGISLATIVE INTERNSHIP - A Washington, DC based summer internship. Interns in this program learn to advocate, defend, and protect the rights of Jains in America. In partnership with American Jewish Committee (AJC), Interns learn to analyze proposed laws, policies and procedures by government and public sector that may compromise Jain values in America. Two interns are trained each summer for 8 weeks in Washington, DC. Six interns have benefited from this program.

For further information contact: Mr. Chirag Shah - shah.chiragk@gmail.com - (262) 573-5603


LOAN PROGRAM: Creates financial offerings to the benefit the Jain Community. We will be offering a number of resources of youth and families, as we look towards 2015, we will be providing over $150,000 through our education loan program and explore ways to bring interest free loans for family assistance programs for Jains in North America.

Chairperson: Udai Jain - udaijn@yahoo.com - (281) 980-0741. 


LONG RANGE PLANNING: The Long Range Planning (LRP) Committee, a 12 member Standing Committee of JAINA, is organized under Article V, Section 5 of JAINA’s Charter. With a vision to “Live and Share a Jain Way of Life”, the objective of LRP Committee is to establish long-range, 10-20 years, plans for North American Jains and JAINA. In this regard, the Committee develops and executes short-term as well as long-term goals. The Committee supports and guides JAINA in infrastructure development and operational strategies. LRP Committee creates opportunities for leadership development, assists JAINA EC and Board of Directors by being a custodian of certain tasks, and acts as an incubator facility for launching new initiatives and the roll out of JAINA projects.

Chairperson: Dipak Doshi - dipakginni@gmail.com - (847) 420-9025.


MEDIA PRODUCTION: Founded in 2006, the Media Productions Committee creates high quality Jain media programs. It showcases the Jain way of life and Jains of North America, with special platform given to our youths. It is then, that Mangalam TV Show, the only Jain show of its kind, was launched and has been broadcast on TV and Internet channel for last 7 years. It now reaches all Jains around the world. With most recent reports, more than 15,000 people are watching the show from 51 countries around the world. Upcoming programs will feature 2015 JAINA Convention, Jain Principles and introspection about various issues related to the Jain Community. It will still have many regular features. We also produced a Mangalam Stavan CD to bring awareness of Jain Stavans in Indian classical ragas to the North American Jain Community. 

Chairperson: Mamta Shaha: mamta.shaha@gmail.com. To learn more go to jaina.org/mediaproduction.


PUBLIC RELATIONS & MEDIA: This committee is engaged in developing media package, define protocol for communications and responsible for branding and publicity for JAINA. Launched "Live & Help Live" with community up-liftment, Student Loan program and Scholarship program.

Chairperson: Hemant Shah - hemantil@yahoo.com - (630) 933-8311. 


PATRON PROGRAM: This program was initiated in 1997 to enable JAINA to meet its essential expenses. With an expense of about $100,000 yearly to maintain a headquarter, continue the publication of Jain Digest and other such activities, it is imperative for all of us to become JAINA PATRON with an annual contribution of $251 or become Grand Patron for Life by contributing $5,000.

Chairperson: Udai Jain - udaijn@yahoo.com - (281) 980-0741.


PLANNED GIVING: Educates members of the Jain community on the intersection between philanthropy and tax benefits. It is our belief that without proper planning, the more wealth you leave for your family, the more estate taxes need to be paid. Philanthropy, however, can be used to reduce taxes and simultaneously help involve family members and transmit values to future generations.

Chairperson: Yogesh Kamdar - bkamdar@comcast.net - (203) 288-2350.


PUBLIC AFFAIRS: This committee had arranged a unique event of having a Jain Prayer at the inauguration of the 2001 session of the US Congress in Washington, DC. Coordinated multiple Diwali functions at Capital Hill and the White House. It has also established cordial relations with many US Senators and Congressmen and is working to raise the general awareness of Jainism in North America. The main aim is to promote Jain values amongst non-Jains thru interaction with federal and other organizations and media. Go to jaina.org/publicaffairs to learn more.

Chairperson: Manoj Dharamsi - mdharamsi@hotmail.com - (703) 620-9837.


TECHNOLOGY: To develop, operate, and maintain the Information Technology infrastructure for JAINA, JAINA Committees, Jain Centers, and Jain Community members. The scope includes JAINA web portal, JAINA Mailing List, Convention registration systems, Jain Networking Function, group emails, online payment and donation processing, domain name registration & maintenance, internet-based meeting facility, telephone conferencing, member blogs, and social media platforms.

Chairperson: Chandrakant Vora - chandra.vora@gmail.com - (408) 378-8765.


UPLIFTING UNDERPRIVILEGED JAINS: Assist economically challenged Jain families to come out of poverty through quality education, vocational and skill enhancement training leading to higher paying jobs. In 2013 - 2014, your generous support has made significant difference in management at schools affecting nearly 1,000 children. In addition over 110 students have directly benefited from this program. Go to upliftment.jaina.org to learn more.

Chairperson: Sushil Jain - skjain99@gmail.com - (240) 277-3039.


V. R. GANDHI: To promote and encourage studies in Jainism and to spread the message of V.R. Gandhi. They have created a number of projects to honor the legacy of Virchand Raghavji Gandhi including the creation of a commemorative V.R. Gandhi Stamp and the establishment of the V.R. Gandhi Scholarship Fund which awards need-based scholarships to students pursuing higher education in Jain philosophy, literature and scriptures at recognized universities and institutions. To learn more about the V.R.G. Committee, go to jaina.com/virchandgandhi.

Chairperson: Akash Jhaveri - akashjhaveri@yahoo.com - (201) 628-0483.


WORLD COMMUNITY SERVICES (WCS): To provide humanitarian services all around the world. WCS aims to provide medical services to disadvantaged and poor people while also being at the forefront of emergency situations such as earthquakes, famine, floods and hurricanes, among other scenarios. The WCS has helped over 65 Humanitarian Projects Worldwide. Mostly recently, the WCS sponsored a computer lab in IS 2 Egbert Intermediate School in Staten Island, NY after the destruction of Hurricane Sandy. After the devastating June 2013 Uttarakhand Floods, WCS created a "Uttarakhand Flood Victims' Relief Fund." Go to jaina.org/wcs to learn more about our initiatives.

Chairperson: Prakash Mehta - pmehta@psiint.com - (703) 621-5840.


YATRA: We successfully finished 99 yatra to Shree Shatrunjay Mahatirth, Palitana, India from Nov 10, 2011 to Jan 9, 2012. This was first time in the history that JAINA had organized this yatra from USA to India.  Participating in this unique and historic opportunity is a once in a lifetime event for Jains across North America. We look forward to arranging the 99 yatra in 2015 - 2016. To learn more visit www.jaina.org/99yatra.

Chairperson: Arvind R. Shah - ashah_1941@yahoo.com - (248) 835-7395.

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