Unnati Newsletter April-June 2015

Dear Friends,

We acknowledge the efforts of Dr.Subhadra, Mr. Kalyan Kumar and  Unnati Team who have helped in capturing and putting together all the details of the News letter.

Volume 3: Apr – Jun 2015 | www.unnatiblr.org

Welcome Note

“Sisurvetti pasurvetti, vetti gana rasam phanihi”

says the sanskrit sloka which means music is enjoyed by everyone including animals, babies and even snakes. Music in whatever form has a soothing and calming influence on our body and mind, brings an inherent peace to the soul. Besides this, music fuels the creativity of mind as it stimulates the right brain thus balancing the left and right brain activities.

Classical music which is governed by a systematic rhythm, rules and regulations is nothing less than a complicated mathematical equation. Irrespective of the genre, music follows a set pattern, scale and style, classical music with its sruti, laya and bhava needs a fine co ordination mind and body. Music thus creates a perfectly balanced left and right brain activity thus making it a science as much as an art.

In education, we encourage more of left-brain activity and slowly make the right brain dull or inactive, thus reducing the capacity utilization of the brain.Arts in general and music in particular when learnt properly will help keep both the right and left brain active even in an adult. Music with its transcending barriers of time, place, type plays a pivotal role in attaining the balance in thoughts, deeds and acts.

The second quarter of every year is very special for Unnati as the signature musical event Utsav unfolds. Utsav is a celebration from the time of planning, finalizing the program schedules, inviting artists, contacting well wishes and sponsors till executing the event successfully. Any program of this scale and repute is a herculean task to accomplish. Team Unnati has been on this mission for many years now and happy to note that the scale and standard gets bigger each year.

Pandit Ravishankar, an Indian musical maestro said ” In our culture we have such respect for musical instruments, they are like part of God. “

We at Unnati feel the presence of this serenity and divinity all through the Utsav, when every inch of the auditorium reverberates with great music and transports the audiences to a different world. It gives us immense satisfaction when all the music starved souls go home with content and satisfaction. Our journey so far has been blessed with help pouring in from many different quarters and it is extremely vital to have the continued support.

It is our pleasure to have you all with us during our signature event Utsav. Here is Team Unnati’s big hearty welcome to Utsav.

“Classical music is the kind we keep thinking will turn into a tune” – Kin Hubbard


Though music transcends language, culture and time, and though notes are the same, Indian music is unique because it is evolved, sophisticated and melodies are defined.- Dayananda Saraswati

Indian Classical music has its origins attributed to Vedic times and also celestial beings like Narada, though the form familiar today was originally popularized during the 13th and 14th centuries by Purandaradasa who is hailed as the pitamaha of Indian music. It is said that God Himself is musical sound, the sound which pervades the whole universe, i.e. Nadabrahma. The origins of Indian music are therefore considered divine. It is said that the musician has to cultivate an attitude of self-abandonment, in order to fuse with the Supreme Reality, Brahma and the goddess of knowledge, music and wisdom Saraswati.

The word patron, in Latin, means Father; hence, a patron of the Arts is one who “begets” and protects the Arts.

Art and culture thrive well Indian music like any other art form flourished with the patronage of the powerful kings. All the major kings had resident musicians and encouraged the art by hosting music festivals, competitions and performances. Patronage was and will remain a prerequisite , for music did not fetch any revenues for the singer or composer and thus they had to find support from royal courts to survive. Patronage took a beating after Indian independence because of the abolition of princely states. Corporate support in recent times has helped Indian music to regain its lost glory.

” Corporate Social Responsibility ( CSR), the new buzzword though is about good corporate management practices does not really involve patronizing arts. Corporate support for arts and culture is declining fast as they are not in the forefront of the CSR activities listed such as poverty, public health, children’s issues etc. Businesses are under increasing pressure to prove their responsibility towards the social activities and hence they focus on the immediate social issues.

“We consider development work in the social sector as real CSR and art and culture should not be part of it,” is the opinion of some organisations, while certain others opine that they should very well be included in CSR.

The opinions may be divided..

The reasons could be varied…

The fact of the matter is unified… simple indeed..

Any art form needs sincere and dedicated patronage.

Utsav, our annual musical extravaganza is the most prestigious event of Unnati, conducted with a great zeal, planning and meticulousness. The scale, standard and grandeur has been growing higher by the year making it the most anticipated event not just for us but for our rasikas too.

Utsav is our journey of joy,Utsav is our respect for the art,Utsav is our cultural foot print,Utsav is our musical retreat,Utsav is our tribute to the mesmerising art called ” Carnatic Music” Simply put.. Utsav is our identity, our pride and our crowning glory…

Team Unnati takes great pride in conducting this event which takes a lot of time, effort, planning and not to mention the money. From having the great artists of the art on stage till the last minute details of the event involves a lot of work, we thank all the supporters and participants for making Utsav a success year after year. The journey has not been very musical and we did stumble upon some tough ragas, difficult notes and hard swaras. It is becoming a great challenge to organize an event of “Utsav” repute. It is our pleasure to have this invite open for all in the era of ” no free lunches in this world”.

Our spirit, reputation, relationships helped and continue to help us in realizing our dream called Utsav. While the quality audience, ever obliging artists, relentless volunteers and others keep up the spirits high, it is disheartening to note the dwindling corporate support for this prestigious event. While Team Unnati never was nor will be hesitant to take up challenges of this magnitude, it is becoming increasingly difficult to bear the financial burden of the event. Unnati’s reputation and relationships with artists is instrumental in bringing the ” who’s who” of the Carnatic music world to our stage. We need support from all our well wishers, donors and patrons for the sustained musical brilliance and glory.

Because we firmly believe that music is the food for the brain, thought and soul.. Music alone can bring the joy, cheer and happiness, music alone can make us laugh and cry with ecstasy… Music is ethereal and divine…

A short story on music goes like this:

A tiny country was suffering from a long drought, people were starting to go hungry because of the bad harvests. A group of musicians were travelling the country, trying to make a living from their concerts. But with so many problems in the land, no one felt like listening to music.

-“But music can help overcome any problems,” objected the musicians, without anyone paying them the slightest attention.So the musicians tried to find out the reason for lack of rains. It was very strange, there was no rain despite the sky being overcast.

-“It’s been cloudy like this for many months, but not a single drop of rain so far,” said people.

-“Don’t worry, we’ll bring rain to the country,” the musicians responded, and they began rehearsing for a concert at the summit of the highest mountain.

Everyone who heard the music was seized by curiosity and went up the mountain.

From their instruments came small, playful musical notes, that rose into the clouds. The music was so joyous, happy and fun, and the notes started playing with the clouds’ soft, fluffy bellies, running here and three, up and down, and the whole sky turned into one big game of tickle torture. Before long, the giant clouds were thundering with laughter.

The musicians continued playing joyfully and a few minutes later the clouds, crying with laughter, soaked the little country below with their precious tears, bringing happiness to all.

And in memory of that musical rain, everyone in the land learned how to play an instrument and, taking turns, would go up the mountain every day to bring joy to the clouds with their beautiful songs.

Team Unnati needs your support to rain music year after year. Our cultural extravaganza Utsav needs blessings and help from all of you..

Please celebrate the musical sojourn with us ..
” One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain. ” – Bob Marley

Events at UNNATI:

1. Visits : Unnati was happy to welcome reputed jeweller, Mr Nirav Modi and our long time associates – the Give India Team.


2.CSE Summit and NGO Mela 2015 held on 17-04015- One day seminar organized by CII Karnataka: ‘CSR Summit and NGO Mela 2015 was held with emphasis on ‘SOCIAL IMPACT THROUGH PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN GOVT., CORP., and NGOs’ – Mr. Ranga and Ms.Sangeetha from Unnati participated in the summit.

3. CSR Participation By Tata Global: Mr Pratap Ramdas, a long time supporter of Unnati and Chief Manager of IR & Community Initiatives at Tata Global Beverages Limited, visited Unnati. He interacted with the students, encouraged them to practice what they have learnt at Unnati and to always have the courage to face any obstacles that come their way.


4. AXA Workshop –11th June 2015: As a part of AXA’s Corporate Responsibility Week, Unnati was invited to set up a volunteer drive in their Hosur Road and BTM Layout offices. We had a wonderful time interacting with the employees and informing them about the different ways of giving back to society. Many thanks to AXA for giving us the opportunity to create awareness about Unnati and the work we do.

We also thoroughly enjoyed re-connecting with our students who are now working at AXA. It was wonderful to see them as dedicated young professionals and hearing about their excellent work ethics made our day!


5. Yoga Workshop by the Isha Foundation at Unnati Centre – 22nd June 2015: In the spirit of ‪International Yoga Day‬, Unnati hosted the Isha Foundation, who conducted a holistic yoga workshop at our Centre. Students and employees were out in full force to partake of the benefits of yoga. Many thanks to the Isha Foundation for conducting the workshop.


6. Ujjivan Financial Services visit- 25th June 2015: Representatives of Ujjivan Financial Services visited Unnati Centre on the 25th of June. Over an hour long interaction with students, they discussed the concept of micro-financing and its benefits. They also highlighted the job opportunities in their organization as well as the many ways in which they could help students.


7. Training on Soft Skills and Spoken English at NPA Polytechnic College, Kotagiri- 2nd April 2015: Soft skills and spoken English training to NPA Polytechnic College, Kotagiri, Nilgiris, T.N. was conducted by Unnati team represented by Mr. Ranga, Praveen and Sujay from 2nd April 2015 to 30th May 2015.


8. Financial Literacy workshop – 21 April 2015- 48th Batch: Financial Literacy was held on 21st April 2015 for the 48th Batch.


9. Leadership Programme – 25th April 2015- 48th Batch: Leadership Programme was held on 25th April 2015 for the 48th Batch.


10. Blood Donation Camp – 25th April 2015- 48th Batch: Blood Donation Camp was conducted by Rotary Club on 25th April 2015 for the 48th Batch students. Students and staff of Unnati donated blood.


11. Valediction of the 48th Batch:

We celebrated the Valediction of the 48th Batch on the 14th May, 2015. Guests of Honour included: 1. Dr Bhojraj, 2. Ms Anitha Dubey, 3. Mr Vaikuntam, 4. Ms Bhagirathi Raghunathan, 5. Ms Nirmala Iyengar and 6. Mr Bhupinder Lamba.

As always the valediction day had the festive atmosphere where excited students took part in a lot of activities. They shared their experiences of being part of Unnati and how Unnati brought about the much desired change in them. It is always a pleasure to see the young faces brimming with confidence and set the foot our their nest to face the world well equipped.

Incidentally we would like to mention that Unnati is a training partner with IICA and we are presenting imparting training to the students who are undergoing 9 months “ICP in CSR” course with Unnati trainers.

We thank IICA for their time and effort, and look forward to more such collaborations in the futureJoy

12. New Batch Selection Day- 16th May 2015 -49th Batch:

We welcomed a fresh batch of Unnatians on 16th of May. A look at the interviews and various processes of Admissions Day.


13. Alumni Meet:

The Alumni Meet was conducted on the 24th of May. We were pleased to note a good turn-out by our former students. The programme was conducted by the 49th Batch, with students compeering the programme and putting up two beautiful dance performances for the alumni. The Alumni were asked to write down their experience at Unnati on paper cut in the shape of leaves. These colourful leaves were then stuck on a paper tree, and the three best contributions were given prizes. Unnati also acknowledged the efforts of alumni who contributed towards nation building through socially responsible initiatives such as referral of students to Unnati.

We would like to thank the Alumni for having taken the time to come and re-connect with their friends and faculty


14. Art of Living workshop- 14th June 2015- 49th Batch:


15. Financial Literacy workshop- 15th June 2015- 49th Batch:

Financial Literacy workshop was held for the 49th Batch on 15th of June.


16. Debate- 15th June 2015- 49th Batch:


17. Training of Trainers – 15th June 2015 to 19th June 2015:

Training on English, Life skills and Values was conducted to the newly recruited Centre Managers, Faculty and Staff by Mr. Ranga, Ms. Kanthimathi & Mr. Praveen.


“If music be the food of love, play on.” – William Shakespeare

Expanding our wings: SGBS Unnati Foundation (SUF)

SGBS Unnati Foundation was started in the year 2011, We have till date opened around 20 centres as mentioned below, across India doing the Unnati Program at those centres.

Below are the centres and batch number is mentioned as per the location wise, Under SUF we have 100% placement records till date.

Karnataka Batch No
DELHI Batch No.
KERALA Batch No.

“Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” – Berthold Auerbach

Placement Record

Excited to announce that we’ve met the 100% placement yet again! Students of the 48th Batch have been placed in reputed organisations like First Source Solution Pvt Ltd, Westside, St. Mark’s Hotel, Brigade Group, MIDP Hospitality, AXA Group, Health & Glow, Aurah Spa and many others!

We are extremely proud of our students and wish them the very best, always!Joy

“Music can change the world because it can change people.” – Bono

Teacher/Volunteer’s Corner


Ms.Sangeetha Abhishek:

Ms.Sangeetha Abhishek, a Post Graduate in H.R has rich experience in corporate sector. She joined Unnati in April 2014, has been entrusted with the responsibility of writing proposals for funding and in this connection she has to engage in talks with Corporates and other funding agencies. While engaging with the Corporates, she interacts with the officials to explore areas of their volunteering with Unnati. Proposals requests for funding require deft handling and writing skills which Sangeetha does with aplomb. She also handles sessions on Spoken English and grooming for the students at Unnati. We wish her all the very best.

“Beautiful music is the art of the prophets that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us.”Martin Luther

Know Your Team


Ms.Geetha Menon

Ms. Geetha Menon who was a manger with Air India joined Unnati as a volunteer in Jan 2014. She has been designated as General Manager Operations to look after Unnati Centres outside Bangalore. Unnati has been witnessing phenomenal progress in increasing the number of centres in India and Ms. Geetha’s role has been very significant in this. She brings in rich experience of an administrator and we are sure Unnati will scale to greater heights under her guidance. We wish her all the very best.

” Where words fail, music speaks.”Hans Christian Andersen

Students speak


Basavaraj : Batch: 48
Vocation: Admin Assistant

About my family: There are 11 members in my family. I have five sisters and all are married, 4 brothers. Two of my brothers are farmers, one works as a mason, while the other one has completed M.com. Before joining Unnati I was lacking in communication, I was having stage fear and I did not know the value of money and time. Now I am able to communicate in English and have overcome stage fear by attending assembly, and also now I know the value of money and have become punctual. I am happy to get a job in TCS with a salary of Rs.14000 per month and I am very grateful to Unnati.”

 Ilayaraja S

Batch: 49th Batch16
Vocation: Admin Assistant

About my family: My family consists of four members, father, mother, sister and myself. My father is a farmer, my mother is a housewife and my sister is married. I am Physically Challenged. Before joining Unnati I was lacking in communication, no knowledge of Computers and had less knowledge. Now I am able to communicate in English and have good knowledge of Computers. I am very grateful to Unnati.

” Music doesn’t lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music. “. – Jimi Hendrix



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