Answering the Call to Serve

Earlier this morning Myself, Gurunam Kaur and Guruka Singh were in a long meeting, working on SikhNet’s budget for 2007. At the end of every year we create goals and plans for the upcoming year, and have to ensure that SikhNet’s operation is covered financially and works within the budget. has grown quite a bit in the past 11 years (Since Nov 1995). Not only the number of people visiting, but the number of services that we maintain. The SikhNet staff does this full time, and so have all the expenses that a regular business would have (office space, rent, wages for staff, insurance, utility bills, computers, servers, etc).

SikhNet has been fortunate to have started the service back in 1996, which has been one of the major sources of funding for SikhNet. However, in the past few years funding from this service has declined rapidly as multi-million dollar commercial companies in India took over the Indian Matrimonial market. We recognized that we would not be able to compete with these companies. It was not our core focus to be spending most of our time developing matrimonial services and leaving little time for our core purpose (serving, educating and inspiring people to the message of the Gurus).

The past two years have been a leap of faith for us all. With matrimonial funding for SikhNet going down it started to become more and more important to receive financial support from the sangat at large. Our prayer is that people value the SikhNet service enough to support it, and start to make up the difference in funding.  We have consciously made an effort to serve, serve, and serve more, so that people will feel the impact that SikhNet makes in their life and want to support it. Hopefully this is evident to you in all the many projects that we started this year. We have received countless emails from many of you expressing appreciation for SikhNet and how it has changed your life in some way,  so know we are on the right track.

Today I have been feeling a bit moody and emotional. After having our budgeting meeting and seeing the financials it became VERY apparent how community support is crucial for SikhNet to continue in the future. I’m feeling the weight and gravity of the situation. 

For the past 11 years I have poured my heart and soul into SikhNet and It has been the most gratifying thing in the world, to see people grow and blossom before your very eyes. I know it is all Guru ji’s doing! Working with SikhNet is such a gift, to be able to help serve others in this way. However, I’m feeling the weight of the unknown, and am unsure what the Guru will bring to SikhNet. On one hand I have to keep reminding myself to not worry and trust that the Guru will take care of it, however that doesn’t stop me from being concerned. 

 Why am I telling you all this? This blog has always been a way for me to share things that are on my mind in a personal way, and I felt like it was important for you to realize that everything isn’t just "business as usual". I don’t want to give you the impression that SikhNet is going to shut down next month…because it isn’t. The resources needed for SikhNet will manifest somehow, and at the right time. SikhNet does have some money in savings for emergencies, however it is not something that could sustain SikhNet on an ongoing basis. 

Many people traditionally give their dasvandh to local Gurdwaras or other charitable organizations. I always try to share with people the vision of how they can make such a large impact globally through SikhNet. One should still give support locally, but recognize the impact that one can also have globally in this age of technology. There is so much yet to be done and you have the opportunity to be a part of this change. 

My goal tonight is not to make you feel guilty or pressure you to give money to SikhNet. My real prayer is that you see the gift and opportunity that YOU ALL have to make a difference in the lives of thousands upon thousands of people all over the world by becoming a supporting SikhNet member. You make it possible for SikhNet to spread the teachings of the Siri Guru Granth Sahib, to serve and uplift humanity. As you have been touched and transformed in some way by SikhNet, you have the opportunity to help others to benefit in this same way.

So, those of you who feel called to serve at this time, please give generously to SikhNet and even consider signing up to give a monthly donation. I would very much value any ideas or suggestions from you all in ways to bring more financial prosperity to SikhNet. We need all the help we can get. Maybe you know someone else that might be in a position to support SikhNet, or maybe you can raise funds locally in your community.

Thanks for listening…..


16 Responses to “Answering the Call to Serve”

  1. Kulwant Singh says:

    This is where rubber meets the pavement. A gursikh goes deep down to his core and receives his gift,strength and relationship with his inner true guru. It is my experience with non-profit projects that there is a huge gap between financial support and enjoyment of benefits of a institution by individuals. It is not limited to Sikhs alone, it is a human nature.

    Gurmustak, it is these moments in life that makes one’s soul connection stronger.

    I will send you my donations.

    Gur Bur Akal!

  2. Manvinder says:


    i read your post re: financial support and i was thinking of how to generate a sustinable support for sikhnet. Would it be possible for sikhnet to associate/partner up with gurdwaras and seek a support from the gurdwaras.

    I think people find it easier to just give to there local gurdwaras and don’t really think in the global perspective. So you may have to become more local and partner up with gurdwars around the work and in exchage get a portion of the donation.

  3. Leah says:

    Maybe you already do this, but you could have a store. Maybe t-shirts or videos or cds or perhaps stickers even, with any proceeds going to sikhnet.

    Stickers are cheap to get and you can make a lot on them.

    And they have messages that people can post and show what they believe along with your site url.

    I suppose that’s somewhat materialistic…but really..people like to be proud of what they support in some way. So, it’s a thought of one source of money in which people can support you while making a statement.

  4. Manvinder Singh, I am not sure how this could be done in a way that keeps SikhNet neutral. My experience so far with Gurdwara management has been less about service and trying to make a difference…but more about politics. So, if we were to partner with a Gurdwara it would be about “what SikhNet would be giving to the Gurdwara in Exchange”. If you have particular ideas related to this…I would love to hear them. I don’t want to limit the options, but again want to preserve the space that SikhNet holds and keep it neutral and un-political.

    I think it would be ideal if there were people/organizations who wanted to support the work of SikhNet and gave a grant or large donation to support the work.

    Leah: We have thought of doing product sales, but have not gotten around to doing it since it requires a lot of time for order fullfillment, investment of products and promotion. I don’t feel that there would be enough of a volume of sales for this type of thing to justify the time and cost. It is still something we would like to do…but just a matter of the timing.

  5. If only a fraction of the people that use SikhNet signed up to give an automatic monthly donation to SikhNet this would take care of it. Currently only a small percentage of visitors to SikhNet actually make donations.

    Every donation counts…and does make a difference. So…if you feel you can only give $3…then great! If you are able to give $2,000 then awesome! We all have different situations. Giving has a way of creating prosperity for yourself. When you give…you receive things back in multiple fold. Giving 10% of what you earn back to the Guru (dasvandh) is core practice in Sikhi and there is a reason behind this.

  6. Ramanpreet singh says:


    I really appreciate your dasvandh idea and I really understand the need. From Coming december I and few of my frenz will try to committ some monthly amount but you can do lot of other things.

    I think you can definitely do something related to the products. If I am not wrong 3HO is manufacturing lot of products.

    Why can’t you have a tie up with them as in selling there products on Sikhnet. I believe Sikhnet has more visibility then any 3ho website. On sale of every 3ho product they can pay you a commission or something.

    you can always start advertising on sikhnet, obviously you can always keep an eye on the products being advertised.

    wjkk wjkf

  7. Thank you Ramantpreet Singh for comitting to support SikhNet on a monthly basis!

    We can sell products… but in order to raise the sums of money needed for SikhNet we would have to sell quite a bit. We can’t rely on this soley. It would only be small supplemental income for SikhNet.

    SikhNet as a non-profit organization cannot do commercial advertising. However, we plan to expand our sponsorship program which will serve a similar need to create a way for people/organizations to get exposure.

    You can see the current options for sponsorship

  8. Davinder Heslin says:


    I totally understand what you are trying to do and can appreciate the frustration behind it. I do not agree with the idea of a partnership with the local Gurudwara’s and my reasons are similar to yours. SikhNet website has a Purpose and the Purpose is to reach people globally and teach both, the ones that are born in to Sikhi but want to understand it better as well as the ones who choose to become Sikhs. I think the local fundraising idea is a good one as well as committing to give monthly. Product sales although can help, can be very time consuming and costly. Many of us enjoy SikhNet on a daily basis whether it is for the Daily Hukumnama, Gurbani and videos of Guruka Singh’s interviews or the SikhNet daily news. What we all need to realize is that we need to give to SikhNet on a daily basis just like you would if you live in a community and go to the local Gurudwara’s. Without even thinking you donate (regardless of the amount). Where there is no local Gurudwara’s near by “Sikhnet Is The Gurudwara And A Place Where Snagat Meets.”

    Gurumustuk, I am committing to support SikhNet on a monthly basis!


  9. kamalji singh says:

    sat sri akhal
    i would like ask you question please tell what is the difference betwen KHALSA and SIKH.
    you can send me answer in PUNJABI HINDI AND ENGLISH.

  10. Gurkirpal says:

    Bir ji….

    I was just wondering ji…
    how much is a monthly budget of sikhnet??

    Bir ji i will contribute this month ji…

  11. Gurkirpal, we are in the process of drafting up an annual report for SikhNet which will give a clear picture of what it costs to run SikhNet and what the expenses are. I will let you know when this is completed.

  12. Davinder Heslin says:


    I was wondering if you guys have ever considered asking people to volunteer?

  13. Davinder, yes we have used volunteers for some specific projects. The issue is getting skilled people in a particular area who are reliable and able to commit to the work. Many times we spend a lot of time for a technical project with a volenteer and in the end don’t come through because they are too busy. I have found that small non-technical projects are best suited for volunteers. It’s definitely on our radar though.

  14. Barkat Singh says:

    Really like the work you are doing. However the sikhnet users have never seen a statement of income/expense for your operations. Almost every non-profit organization makes these available.

  15. We have been in the process of preparing a report which everyone will be able to view.

  16. Jaspreet Singh says:

    Hi Gurumustuk,

    I think the report will do a great deal of good. I am residing in Dubai and I would like to help in any way I can to ensure this great effort "Sikhnet" goes on, and I think a financial report will definitely help in getting more people on board in financing this unique and nobel project, there are many well to do Sikh families here who are unaware of Sikhnet, so propogating the message will surely help.

    Kindly do let me know when you have the report ready.