Newah Organization of America (NOA) celebrated the successful 20th Annual Convention and General Meeting (AGM) via virtual zoom meeting in the Washington DC Metropolitan area on Sunday, May 29, 2021. The event was broadcasted live in NOA’s Facebook page in collaboration with production and broadcasting partner, The Himalayan Vibes (THV) and popular media partner- Enepalese.com platforms. The program was well received by a cross-section of the Newah and Nepalese community from DMV, various States and as well from Nepal. This year’s convention theme was “Newah Women: Challenges and Opportunities in Balancing Personal and Professional Life”.
NOA treasurer Mr. Divakar Dhaubhadel and THV member-Mrs. Mila Shrestha served as emcees and formally introduced and welcomed special dignitaries and guests. Emcee cordially requested distinguished guests, NOA President Mr. Yagya Man Shakya, Chief Guest, honorable His Excellency Dr. Yuba Raj Khatiwada-
Nepalese Ambassador to US, Keynote Speaker, Ms. Anushka Shrestha, Entrepreneur & Miss Nepal World 2019, and Mr. Season Shrestha – past president of NOA and current president of World Newah Organization (WNO) to be seated on the dais. Due to some circumstances H.E. Dr. Khatiwada was not able to attend the event. Special distinguished guests from Nepal Legendary Dr. Satya Mohan Joshi, Janakavi Mr. Durga Lal Shrestha and Mr. Malla K Sundar were invited however due to ongoing Covid-19 pandemic situations in Nepal they were unable to join the program. NOA received a graceful video message-poem from Janakavi Mr. Durga Lal Shrestha and played to the audience. Likewise, emcee cordially welcomed three successful women panelists Ms. Ishani Shrestha-former Miss Nepal World, Dr. Nikki Shakya-Consultant Psychiatrist, UK and Ms. Binisha Shrestha-Entrepreneur, Nepal for the discussion program on the coveted theme “Newah Women: Challenges and Opportunities in Balancing Personal and Professional Life”. Emcee also recognized and welcomed other dignitaries, participants and guests to the virtual convention.
The 20th Annual Convention and General Meeting virtually began by lighting Twayarba with the permission of Chief Guest H.E. Dr. Yuba Raj Khatiwada (not present) by NOA President then followed by National Anthems of America and followed by Nepal. Both anthems were beautifully sung by NOA-LC students. On this occasion, NOA President Mr. Shakya also launched and displayed NOA’s official LASKUS Magazine 2021 virtually.
Mr. Mahindra Man Singh Pradhan- NOA first vice president gave a welcome speech recognizing chief guest, keynote speaker, distinguished guests, NOA founding members, past presidents, advisors, NOA chapters presidents and representatives, NOA Nepal country coordinator, various organization representatives, media partners and all other participants and expressed gratitude for their continued support and for joining the virtual AGM in this Covid-19 pandemic. Mr. Pradhan also announced that due to Covid-19 situation in Nepal and acknowledging the emotional period Nepalese people are going through, NOA has decided not to include any cultural and entertainment activities at this time.
NOA General Secretary Mr. Udaya Shrestha presented a summary of detailed annual activities for 2020-2021 with exquisite visual clips. NOA Treasurer Mr. Divakar Dhaubhadel has presented an annual financial report and appealed for support and donation. NOA Scholarship program chairman and past president Mr. Rajesh Shrestha has underlined the continuous scholarship support provided to Jagat Sundar Bwonekuthi (JSB) students, NOA chapters coordinator and past president Mr. Ram Lal Shrestha introduced Chapters: Florida, Seattle, New England, Northern California and Southern California and shared some of the achievements of these chapters in 2020-2021. He also emphasized on uniting chapters activities in strengthening the common goals and objectives of NOA overall. Each chapter’s representatives extended their greeting messages, shared enjoyment of participation and commitment to work together. Likewise, Mr. Uttam Kumar Makaju, Vice President-Canadian Newa Guthi, Dr. Hemanta Joshi, President-Newa Cultural Society of Alberta, Dr. Prof. Omakareswor Shrestha, Chief-Nepalbhasa Central Department and Mr. Kiran Ken Ranjit, NOA Nepal Country Coordinator and President, Lumanti Daboo magazine also cordially shared greeting messages.
Keynote Speaker Ms. Anushka Shrestha delivered an outstanding speech on convention theme “Newah Women: Challenges and Opportunities in Balancing Personal and Professional Life” and shared her personal experiences in the business and provided tips that one must maintain and balance between presentation and substance as you move towards the success.
A panel discussion in “Newah Women: Challenges and Opportunities in Balancing Personal and Professional Life” was greatly received by the audience. Dr. Roshan Lal Shrestha coordinated the panel discussion and was moderated by Ms. Sichu Mali. Panel discussion helped to understand hurdles that even a professionally successful Newah woman faces and how best to address the hurdles. Three panelists were three dynamic and successful women from various professional backgrounds from three different geographical locations representing US, UK and Nepal. Through the discussion it was concluded that gender imbalance is utterly prevailing in the Newah community. Male dominance and expectations on female behavior and female’s passive acceptance shaped the strong structure of the gender imbalance over the time. However, with proper education, knowledge, countries economic and political changes and regular access to the information, gender awareness could be successfully created. Family needs to understand that both male and female members of the household play a vital role to promote or reduce the gender imbalance. Thus, male and females need to work together in harmony to address the challenges. Women alone can chant the slogan however men have to join hands to help them flourish.
Continuing the recognition and felicitation program, NOA honored the graduation of organization’s life members’ children. Total of 15 children successfully graduated including 4 students from high school and 11 students from college programs and they are embarking into the next journey of their future career and goals.
To promote Newah culture, language, tradition among us and the new generation, NOA launched 1st Newah Talent Show 2021 coordinated by NOA Secretary Mrs. Babita Shrestha. About 33 young girls and boys participated in the talent show. Dance, songs, instrument and act were four categories where participants showed their talents and skills. Participant’s performances were published in NOA Facebook for over a month’s period. Five Judges were selected as Mrs. Krishna Pradhan (dance)- retired dance teacher of Padma Kanya Campus, Nepal, Mr. Sanjeep Pradhan (song)-singer, Mr. Prajit Shrestha (Instrument)- composer and singer, Dr. Roshan Lal Shrestha (acting) – script writer and actor and Mr. Keshar Man Tamrakar- (poem). The judges reviewed the performances based on the preselected rules, criteria and categories.
Newah Talent Hunt 2021 winners were announced on the AGM program as the followings:
|2||Ms. Palijah Manandhar Khadgi||Acting||26||Second||Nepal|
|3||Mr. Apurva Karmacharya||Dance||15||Third-Tied||Nepal|
|4||Ms. Zoya Maharjan||Instrument||23||Third-Tied||Nepal|
|5||Ms. Palpasha Maharjan||Dance||3||Social Media Top||Nepal|
|6||Ms. Pratigya Bajracharya||Song||21||Consolation||Nepal|
|7||Ms. Adira Shrestha||Acting||4||Consolation||Nepal|
|8||Ms. Jasmine Shakya||Dance||7||Consolation||Nepal|
|9||Mr. Rupak Maharjan||Instrument||17||Consolation||Nepal|
|10||Ms. Utpala Bajracharya||Dance||11||Consolation||Nepal|
|11||Mr. Arjal Dangol||Instrument||19||Consolation||Nepal|
|12||Mr. Subhabam Maharjan||Instrument||20||Consolation||Nepal|
|13||Ms. Anisha Maharjan||Song||22||Consolation||USA|
|14||Ms. Yurika Maharjan||Dance||9||Consolation||Nepal|
|15||Mr. Ojash Kumar Maharjan||Instrument||12||Consolation||Nepal|
|16||Mr. Sarthak Shrestha||Acting||28||Consolation||Nepal|
|17||Mr. Binayak Shakya||Instrument||27||Consolation||Nepal|
Mr. Daya Shakya –NOA founding member shared his long two decades of journey in NOA by going through important portions of the history. He commended the achievement NOA has accomplished over 20 years of its glorious establishment since 2001 and expressed gratitude to see all the hard work that NOA founding members, executive members, well-wishers, and volunteers have put to bring NOA to the present level. He is delighted that the NOA is putting a collective effort in involving the young generation and encouraged all Newah community members to continue using Nepalbhasha language to maintain our identity.
NOA past president and WNO president Mr. Season Shrestha shared a greeting message and praised the uniqueness of the program that the NOA has been presenting and appreciated the First Talent Show introduced with this program involving both young generation and older generation.
President Mr. Yagya Man Shakya expressed gratitude to the Chief Guest, Keynote Speaker, all Dignitaries and Guests for coming together to celebrate NOAs’ 20th Annual Convention and General Meeting 2021 virtually this time due to ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Mr. Shakya briefly summarized the NOA achievements and recognition received during the tenure and urged all the attendees for their continuous support. Mr. Shakya highlighted the criteria, rules, categories and processes involved in Newah Talent Hunt Program. He also informed about the ongoing Covid-19 GoFund Account created to help the Nepalese folks in Nepal and kindly requested to make donations. Mr. Shakya thanked all the sponsors, volunteers for their tireless efforts, the participants, speakers, and media representatives for their presence and continued supports.
NOA 2nd vice president-Mr. Rajesh Lal Shrestha delivered a vote of thanks to all Distinguished Guests, Panelists, Talent Show Judges, Media Partners-THV team and eNepalese, Classic Diamond, Ghimire Homes for exclusive sponsors of NOA program, NOA EC members, volunteers and supportive families and concluded the event.
The virtual meeting ended with a respectful Obituary image of NOA life and honorary member’s loved ones passed away sadly this past year 2020-2021. Please visit www.newah.org and NOA Facebook page for more information. (Photo credit-Mr. Surendra Napit, NOA New England Chapter)
Newah Organization of America May 5th, 2022
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