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Lokvani Presents Inspire Award - I

Lokvani Team

For their path breaking initiatives that helped create many a "firsts" in the Boston South Asian Community, Lokvani is pleased to honor Dr. Abhaya and Jaya Asthana with the Lokvani "INSPIRE" award. The award will be given at the Lokvani Community and Youth Celebrations that will be held at the Ambrosia Banquet Facility on Dec 15. Buy your tickets for the event here

Abhaya and Jaya Asthana

Dr. Abhaya Asthana is a Bell Labs Fellow with Corporate CTO at Alcatel-Lucent. He directs R&D in the areas of computer and communications systems and solutions, multimedia, wireless systems, converged network systems, computer architecture, operating systems, optical networks and VLSI design. He led the design of VLSI systems at INTEL from 1982-1985 and was on the faculty of IIT Kanpur in 1984. Dr. Asthana received his Bachelor's degree in Electrical engineering from I.I.T. Kanpur in 1970, and his Doctorate degree from Tulane University in 1974.

Learning about Hindu Dharma, history and cultural tradition, living it and then passing it on to the next generation is his passion. He has been active in community service at the local and national levels. His main focus has been in promoting educational and spiritual programs and projects that will help Hindus living in North America to remain Hindus, and through their lives contribute to the richness of their adopted land. Organizing Youth Camps, Bal Vihars, Youth Conferences, Dharma Samsads, Hindu Awareness Yaatras, Hindu Mandir Executive Conferences, Hindu Heritage Days, Hindu Seva Day are some examples of what he has been actively doing for the past 25 years. He is the national General Secretary of Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America. He was the Conference Chair/Organizer of the recently concluded 2nd World Hindu Conference held in Chicago, IL which was attended by over 2500 delegates from all over the world.

Jaya Asthana has demonstrated exceptional dedication to public service over the past three decades and has significant experience with social issues particularly dealing with next generation children. She brings into her Seva work a pluralistic and diverse perspective, subject-matter expertise, and most critically, her deeply-held conviction in the positive and proactive role the mothers can play in promoting an appreciation for Hindu values and traditions within our community and in the larger American society. She has been a leading force behind the VHPA community programs such as Hindu Heritage Day, Bal Vihars, Youth Conferences, Temple Relations, Relief Efforts and Family Camps. In the course of these activities she has served in various capacities as a teacher, organizer, administrator, counselor, guide and mentor.

She has seeded and shaped the VHPA Bal Vihars that have been running successfully for over 40 years in the North East. Jayaji has been a pioneer in organizing and evolving the VHPA's Youth and Family Camps for the past 24 years in NJ and MA. Through these weeklong camps, that enable youngsters to reinforce their religious and cultural values with their friends, she has worked tirelessly to bring Hindu samskaras, heritage and culture to the younger generation. Over the past thirty years thousands of youth have participated in these camps.

With twenty years of experience in providing clinical social work services to individuals, families and groups, she serves as a counselor for many in the community. She has provided a wide range of services to clients with a variety of mental disorders including depression, thought and mood disorders, personality disorders, substance abuse, homelessness, domestic violence, physical and sexual abuse. She worked in the inpatient Psychiatric Unit, of Harvard's Massachusetts General Hospital, Bournewood Health Systems, Brookline, MA and the Elizabeth General Medical Center, N.J. Currently she works with Care Alternatives, a Hospice Company, providing counseling and care for terminally ill patients across the state. She is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker, LICSW, Member of ACSW and Member of NASW.

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