The Kerala Social Centre in Abu Dhabi which has completed 46 years of existence serving the expatriate Malayali community is a prominent organization engaged in socio-cultural activities. It is one of the oldest organizations of the expatriate Indian Community, especially the Keralites in the United Arab Emirates.
Established in 1972, the centre moved to the current premises in Madinat Zayed in the capital in 1996. Being one of the five Indian community organizations in the capital registered with the Ministry of Community Development of United Arab Emirates, the Kerala Social Centre caters to around 4,500 people, including around 1,500 members and their family.
Thousands of expatriate children from Kerala have learnt their mother tongue Malayalam at the Kerala Social Centre (KSC) during the past four decades. The KSC is conducting the classes with the help of qualified senior members of the centre who have volunteered as language teachers.
The free Malayalam language classes conducted by Kerala Social Centre is attended by 500 children every year and some of them even excel in the literary writing.
This is one of the many examples of achievements of the KSC members volunteerism and now they are looking for new possibilities to utilize this potential for the benefit of the community.
“Their volunteerism and community spirit beyond individual interests or aspirations are KSC’s strength.
The KSC is planning to establish a help desk to guide all expatriates to join the pension and welfare schemes introduced by the Kerala Government. “Many Keralites are not aware of the scheme that by contributing just Rs. 300 (Dh 16.53) per month they can make their retired life secure. The KSC is making all efforts to encourage the maximum number of people to join the scheme.
As a hub of sports and socio-cultural activities of Keralites, KSC orga nises several annual events like Jimmy George Memorial volley ball tournament, Sports day, Bharath Murali memorial drama festival, youth festival and Kathakali (a classical dance) festival. Art and cultural programmes involving writers, academics and artists from India are conducted almost every week at the centre. Literary and cultural wings of the centre regularly organize debates about socio-cultural and literary developments in India and rest of the world.
The Kerala Social Centre (KSC) has a library with around 9,000 books in Malayalam and English and the organization is trying to attract more people to the library. All major newspapers and periodicals are available at the library. The library membership is open to all residents.
Any resident can get a life membership with Dh100, of which Dh50 is a refundable deposit. Library members can take books home for two weeks.
The centre has collected 1,000 new books, including the ones signed by writers themselves, through a campaign.
The Kerala Social Centre too have an auditorium which is presently under renovation and have the capacity to accommodate 1500 persons. The art and cultural events and the celebrations like Onam festival etc., of KSC are all being organized in its auditorium. The community organizations such as the ISC, ADMS or ICC, also use the KSC’s premises for similar activities.