VRAJ Youth Retreat-Summer 2015

The VRAJ is once again offering a summer youth camp for separate camp weeks. Please pay attention to details on Camp groups, as there are two separate age specific camps offered on different dates.

Erica Desai

Children Age 13 – 16 Years of Age may attend Camp One (Saturday July 18 – Saturday July 25, 2015) Or Camp Two (Saturday July 25 – Saturday August 1, 2015)

Children Age 9 – 12 Years of Age may attend Camp Three (Saturday August 1 – Saturday August 8, 2015). They may also attend Camp Four (Saturday August 8 – Saturday August 15, 2015) or Camp Five (Saturday August 15 – Saturday August 22, 2015)

Photos for 2013 and 2014 camps are posted online at the following link to give campers and parents an idea of the fun they can expect for the 2015 camp year!


All information regarding registration for Youth and Volunteers can be found in the link below:


*Reminder* All clothing should be packed for at least seven days. Some extra clothing items should be included. Please refer to the “suggested list of items to bring” for a comprehensive list of what children should pack.

Huge thank you to all volunteers for making the VRAJ Youth Retreat possible every year!

Former Youth volunteer, Erica Desai, remembers her time as a summer retreat volunteer fondly. Some of her responsibilities included: Supervising the daily activities for campers and aiding the adult volunteers in maintaining order with daily operations. She also attended semi-annual youth retreats to discuss informative topics with peers.

The experience for Volunteers often has as much of an impact on them as the children, and each volunteer is greatly appreciated!


Health Occupations Students of America – Membership and Objectives

The 2015-2016 membership year will be the 31st consecutive year of growth in the Health Occupations Students of America’s history as an organization. Becoming a part of this growing society’s prestigious ranks is easy! The affiliation process is accessible online, and more information can be found at the HOSA website:


The healthcare industry has reaped the benefits of HOSA members through more compassionate care and awareness since 1976.

As former organization President, Erica Desai, stated speaking from her experience, “[The HOSA] developed professional skills as well as leadership skills. These skills helped build confidence along the way in my ability and led to me finding successful employments in the field of health care.” She has since gone on to lead an impressive career in social work in the healthcare industry.

Some of the many goals of the HOSA are to:

Promote the overall wellbeing of individuals

Help shape the character of future leaders in the healthcare industry Erica Desai

Develop effective communication skills in healthcare professionals

To help guide students as they choose their careers in the health field

To encourage responsibility

Promote and encourage the value of teamwork

Membership is available in several stages:

The secondary division, comprised of those who have not received a high school diploma. These members must be enrolled in an organized health science or health awareness program, is available for those who plan to pursue their career in healthcare.

The Postsecondary/Collegiate Division, which is composed of students who are enrolled in health science programs at the collegiate level.

Professional members who are classified as advisors, who help guide students in health activities, or Professionals, who are health professionals in the community who wish to participate.

Alumni, who are former members of the HOSA.

Honorary members, adults who have made significant influences, whether in donations or influence to the HOSA.

Lifetime members, adults who have been members in the HOSA and have paid the Lifetime membership affiliation fee.

If you are interested in joining the HOSA in any of the membership capacities listed above, follow the affiliation link and contact your state advisor for more information on the affiliation process.

Erica Desai – BAPS Culture

Erica Desai is a part of the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, which is a spiritual and service-oriented organization that is dedicated to improving the quality of societal life through promoting growth in individuals and fostering the Hindu culture and ideals of faith, unity, and selfless service.

Erica Desai

“Culture and heritage are a distinct part of the identity of an individual and a community. The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha hosts a variety of initiatives to help Indians stay connected with their cultural roots. The Swaminarayan Akshardham in New Delhi and Gandhinagar stand as a testament to the 10,000 year old culture of the Indian subcontinent and will remain a tribute for future generations. Various exhibitions and special Mega Festivals bring India to the doorsteps of Indians living both geographically and ideologically outside of India. Mystic India, the first large format film ever produced about India, transported the mysticism of India to the hearts and homes of millions worldwide. BAPS mandirs preserve ancient Hindu traditions. They are a celebrated example of majestic Indian architecture and promote a healthy, well-balanced lifestyle prescribed by the ancient sages. Through BAPS’ many cultural initiatives, millions of people can experience the beauty of India and its traditions.”

Erica Desai is proud to be a part of this Hindu organization and spread her faith as well as her sense of service, love and unity to others. She is also happy to achieve this through a volunteer effort that compliments her own dedication to serving others and helping strengthen her community.