VAKKOM MOULAVI
FOUNDATION TRUST

Centre for Society, Culture &
Development

150th BIRTH ANNIVERSARY

Vakkom Moulavi (1873 – 1932)

Recent Events
  • Education researchers from Kerala, national and international speakers, teachers, NGOs and media
    gather to discuss research to strengthen Kerala’s education system during a seminar held on 6-7,
    December 2023 in Thiruvananthapuram, jointly organized by VMFT, Centre for Development Studies and Tata Institute of Social Sciences.

    Despite its tremendous advances in universalizing participation in school education, Kerala does
    surprisingly little research on education in general, and on emerging challenges, such as teaching about
    climate change and environmental sustainability. This important finding was presented in the opening
    session, by Dr. Sajitha Bashir, Vice-Chairperson of VMFT, based on a review of thousands of research
    articles published in peer reviewed journals and Indian Ph.D theses. She emphasized that high
    performing education systems also do continuous research to improve pedagogy and curriculum, as well
    as the management of the education system. This is all the more important as our education system
    faces new challenges.
    An impressive array of speakers addressed a multi-disciplinary audience of researchers, teachers,
    students and media. The keynote speaker, G.M. Pillai, provided a compelling overview of the factors
    behind climate change and its impacts at the global and local levels. Prof. V.K. Damodaran, President of
    VMFT, Dr. Padma Sarangapani of TISS and Prof. C. Veeramani, Director of CDS addressed the audience in
    the welcome session.

    International presentations included those from researchers at the University of Jyväskylä, Global
    Partnership for Education
    , the Earth Institute of Columbia University and UNESCO, India office.
    Sajitha Bashir provided an overview of the evolution of Kerala’s school education system, with an
    analysis of large scale quantitative datasets such as UDISE Plus, the National Sample Surveys on
    education and the Periodic Labour Force Surveys. She highlighted the segmentation in the school
    system, with different socio-economic groups attending different types of schools (government,
    government aided and unaided schools) and with different languages of instruction.
    In her analysis of Kerala’s school curriculum and science textbooks, Dr. Anu Joy , Assistant Professor at
    TISS Hyderabad, emphasized that not much has changed in the way in which science has been taught
    over the years. Climate change does not figure prominently in the curriculum as yet, but environmental
    education has been taught for at least two decades. Developing curricula for climate change focused on
    local impacts and adaptation needs of local communities, as well as using project based learning to
    address real life problems are required strategies.
    Prof. J. Devika spoke about the need to place the teaching of climate change and environmental
    sustainability within the context of different “child protection” regimes that have characterized the state

    over the last century. These shape the modes of engagement between the state, teachers, parents and
    children.


    Teachers highlighted the lack of teacher training, the need to incorporate children’s lived experiences to
    develop locally relevant curricula and the need to address both children’s understanding of science and
    language needs. Media personalities spoke about the paucity of education research in Kerala and the
    lack of systematic and investigative reporting on the challenges facing the education system.
    The seminar concluded with concrete recommendations for deepening the research that was presented
    and identifying priorities for the future.

  • Vakkom Moulavi Foundation Trust celebrated the historic newspaper ‘The Svadesabhimani’ and the 150th birth anniversary of Vakkom Moulavi On November 16, 2023, on the National Press Day, The event, held at the Foundation Hall, brought together a diverse group of individuals to explore into the theme, ‘Fostering a Democratic India: The Role of Media Then and Now. The thought-provoking discussion was organized by, the Swadeshabhimani Media Study Centre under the Vakkom Maulvi Foundation, in collaboration with the Department of Malayalam and Mass Communication & Dept. of English and Media Studies, St. Xavier’s College Thumba.
    The discussion featured distinguished speakers from the field of journalism, each shedding light on vital aspects of media’s impact on Indian democracy. Smt. Saraswathy Nagarajan, Senior Deputy Editor at The Hindu, dissected the intricacies of news reporting in her presentation titled ‘Facts and Fiction in News Reporting.’ This insightful discussion laid bare the challenges and responsibilities faced by journalists in presenting accurate information to the public.
    Sri. Abhilash Mohanan, Deputy Editor at Mathrubhumi News, contributed to the discourse with his presentation, ‘News and News Reporter: News Presentation as a Spectacle.’ Exploring the evolving nature of news presentation, Sri. Abhilash narrated how media has transformed into a spectacle and its implications on the information landscape.
    The former Pro Vice-Chancellor of Kerala University, Prof. J. Prabash, skillfully moderated the session, ensuring a dynamic exchange of ideas. His role was pivotal in steering the conversation and encouraging a deeper understanding of the complexities surrounding media in India.
    Smt.Saraswathy Nagaran discussed the role of media and laymen in understanding facts and fiction in a news story. she also elaborated on the difference between misinformation and disinformation. Disinformation is the distribution of fake news mistakenly or unintentionally while misinformation is the deliberate and intentional distribution of fake news.

    The event saw active participation from approximately 70 attendees, including journalism students who added vibrancy to the discussions. Prof. V. K. Damodaran in his opening remarks highlighted the significance of Vakkom Moulavi and Svadesabhimani newspaper in the contemporary media landscape. By fostering a space for meaningful dialogue, the event has contributed to the ongoing discourse on the role of media in shaping a democratic India

  • Students, parents, and faculty engaged in an animated discussion over women’s rights and changing family and social relationships as part of the “Documentary Screening and Discussion ” meeting on October 21, 2023. This followed the screening of P. A. Haneena’s ‘And I Call Him My Father’, and Dr, Fathima Nizaruddin ‘s “My Mothers’ Daughter”, short documentaries which featured the personal stories of the directors. Prof. Jameela Begum introduced the discussion, by comparing the films to stories by other authors and offering her perspectives on “feminism” versus “womanism”. About 70 people participated in the event including students from St. Xavier’s College, Thumba, and Iqbal College  Peringammala. Fathima Nizarruddins ‘My Mother’s Daughter’ begins as an exploration of the lives of great-grandmothers who were strong matriarchs in a Muslim family in Kerala. But soon enough, cracks from the present creeps into the stories of the past. The volatile relationship between the filmmaker and her mother leads to many arguments that raise questions about the choices made by different generations of women in the community. During the discussion, a  comment from a student resonated with the audience: “The movie made me think of my grandmother, who lived life on her terms. This film encourages women and girls to make their decisions independently and live life on their own terms.” Fathima responded, emphasizing the importance of personal choice and the autonomy to make decisions free from external influence.

    Haneena’s And I Call Him My Father is the journey of Muthafa, father of the documentary maker who has been restoring a piece of degraded mining land tucked away in a village of Kerala into a Greenland of his mind. The land then witnessed substantial changes. Six years later, his daughter retraces the steps of his journey to develop the land.

    Through the lens of personal stories presented in the documentaries, the audience was compelled to reflect on their own experiences and contemplate the broader societal implications. As discussions like these continue, they contribute to the ongoing dialogue surrounding gender, and the importance of embracing diverse narratives in our collective journey toward a more equitable and inclusive future.

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Recent Events
  • Education researchers from Kerala, national and international speakers, teachers, NGOs and mediagather to discuss research to strengthen Kerala’s education system during a seminar held on 6-7,December 2023 in Thiruvananthapuram, jointly organized by VMFT, Centre for Development Studies and Tata Institute of Social Sciences. Despite its tremendous advances in universalizing participation in school education, Kerala doessurprisingly little research on education in general, and on emerging challenges, such as teaching aboutclimate change and environmental sustainability. This important finding was presented in the openingsession, by Dr. Sajitha Bashir, Vice-Chairperson of VMFT, based on a review of thousands of researcharticles published in peer reviewed...
    Read More
  • Vakkom Moulavi Foundation Trust celebrated the historic newspaper ‘The Svadesabhimani’ and the 150th birth anniversary of Vakkom Moulavi On November 16, 2023, on the National Press Day, The event, held at the Foundation Hall, brought together a diverse group of individuals to explore into the theme, ‘Fostering a Democratic India: The Role of Media Then and Now. The thought-provoking discussion was organized by, the Swadeshabhimani Media Study Centre under the Vakkom Maulvi Foundation, in collaboration with the Department of Malayalam and Mass Communication & Dept. of English and Media Studies, St. Xavier’s College Thumba.The discussion featured distinguished speakers from the...
    Read More
  • Students, parents, and faculty engaged in an animated discussion over women’s rights and changing family and social relationships as part of the “Documentary Screening and Discussion ” meeting on October 21, 2023. This followed the screening of P. A. Haneena’s ‘And I Call Him My Father’, and Dr, Fathima Nizaruddin ‘s “My Mothers’ Daughter”, short documentaries which featured the personal stories of the directors. Prof. Jameela Begum introduced the discussion, by comparing the films to stories by other authors and offering her perspectives on “feminism” versus “womanism”. About 70 people participated in the event including students from St. Xavier’s College,...
    Read More

2023: Celebrating the 150th birth anniversary of Vakkom Moulavi

Join our commemoration meetings and activities

VMFT invites you to join the state-wide celebrations of the life and work of Vakkom Moulavi (1873-1932), a towering figure of the Kerala renaissance of the early 20th century, who contributed to the making of modern Kerala.

Throughout 2023, with international seminars, public meetings, workshops, competitions, and programs for all ages and social groups, we will explore the contributions of Vakkom Moulavi, as a journalist, public intellectual, educationist and ardent social reformer. It is the occasion to remember his tireless fight for the rights of people, for Muslim educational and social reform, including the promotion of modern education amongst Muslim women.

Explore the historical newspaper, The Svadesabhimani

The Svadesabhimani was the first newspaper started by Vakkom Moulavi in 1905, who was its owner, publisher and managing editor. The newspaper was a trailblazer in independent and fearless Malayalam journalism. It was suppressed by the Travancore government in 1910, the editor Ramakrishna Pillai was exiled and the press was confiscated.

For the first time, this celebrated newspaper is available to the wider public through the digitization of the available Malayalam issues of the paper. The articles are also being translated into English. Read about its analysis of governance and legislative reforms, education policy, social reforms, media, the national movement and international developments.

Education Research Seminar Series

Shaping A Future with Social Justice: Perspectives for School Education in Kerala

Our school education system needs new curricula, teaching methods and assessment methods to prepare young people for the future. High quality education research is required to support this transformation.

The seminar series will focus on education research in three areas:

  1. Climate resilience and environmental sustainability
  2. Language, culture and identity
  3. Future of work and the future of education.

Jointly organized by VMFT, CDS and TISS

 

  • Developing a research agenda for education: Climate resilience and environmental sustainability
  • December 6-7, 2023
  • Centre for Development Studies, Thiruvananthapuram
  • To register, contact
    vmft.tvpm@gmail.com
School Outreach Programs

The Vakkom Moulavi Foundation Trust (VMFT) hosted an insightful seminar on Memory and Learning on 18th November 2023 exploring the evolving landscape of childhood education in a rapidly changing technological world.

Dr. Malla Bhaskara Rao, Professor, Neurosurgery, NIMHANS and Dr. SR Chandra retd Professor, Neuro Sciences, NIMHANS shared their expertise on the vital role of learning in maintaining brain health and fostering cognitive development. Dr. Rao emphasized the importance of active and multi-modal learning, stating that “Children who engage in learning through repeated efforts and multi-modality exhibit superior brain development and regeneration of brain cells.”

Moderated by Dr. Anu Joy from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, the seminar adopted a multidisciplinary approach, recognizing the social factors that influence learning and memory. Participants engaged in a stimulating exchange of ideas, gaining valuable insights into effective teaching practices in the modern educational landscape.

The seminar concluded with a panel discussion featuring experts from diverse fields, including education, psychology, and technology. The panelists explored potential solutions to address the challenges faced by educators in fostering effective learning in children.

VMFT remains committed to promoting excellence in education and research. The seminar on Memory and Learning is a testament to the organization’s unwavering dedication to providing educators with the knowledge and tools they need to navigate the evolving landscape of childhood education.

Key Takeaways:

  • Learning plays a crucial role in maintaining brain health and cognitive function.
  • Active and multi-modal learning approaches enhance brain development and regeneration.
  • Social factors significantly influence learning and memory.
  • Educators must adapt to the evolving needs of modern education.

Stay tuned for more updates on VMFT’s initiatives as we continue to empower educators and enrich young minds.

Swadeshabhimani Media Studies Centre
Join our workshops, training programs and research study program !

 

The Centre conducts an array of programs to develop the capacity and skills of young people in understanding, using and creating media content of different varieties. It also provides a platform for amplifying the voice of youth to address their needs, interests and perspectives and to put forward solutions to urgent social issues. Named after the trailblazing newspaper The Svadesabhimani, the Centre is dedicated to fostering independent journalism and media.

 

Currently, the Centre organizes workshops on films and cinema, media literacy workshops and research studies on the media. If you are interested in participating or organizing events in your college, school or local community, contact vmft.tvpm@gmail.com

R P Amudhan leads a documentary film workshop
R P Amudhan leads a documentary film workshop