About Us

North American Konkani Association (NAKA) was formed in 1998 when Ms. Nina Padukone, Damodhar Baliga and Vasanth Bhat saw a need for an all encompassing national organization to help unite the North American Konkani community, with the goal of preserving our language (our means of communication), showcasing our culture, and nurturing our customs and traditions. With this vision guiding us, NAKA strives everyday to serve as a resource, provide a helpful hand when needed, and create a national presence for the Konkani community

Welcome and see what NAKA can do for you,
what you can do for NAKA and what NAKA has planned for the collective future.

What We Do

NAKA was created with the intent of being a central resource to provide support to regional planning committees through its board members’ vast experience in planning Sammelans. Since its inception, it has served in financial, charitable, and informational capacities for Sammelans, youth conventions, and other ventures. Moving forward, NAKA has plans to broaden its role within the Konkani community in North America to include taking on a more substantial role in the organization of Sammelans, in order to cater to the attendees and provide a more stable blueprint for future Sammelans, including overhauling the current financial model. It is the opinion of NAKA’s members that the current fundraising process is not sustainable, and must be modified to ensure that future Sammelans can be presented with the same quality without becoming cost-prohibitive. Aside from Sammelans, our goal is to support the youth conventions, local Konkani organizations throughout North America, and most importantly, to unite Konkanis throughout North America. If you would like to see the bylaws and amendments for NAKA, feel free to contact us.

Why does the Konkani community need NAKA?

             Worldwide, Konkani community is a very small community. Fraction of it is in North America which is widely spread across U.S.A. and Canada. There are a number of Konkani Associations which have been trying to cater mostly to the cultural and religious needs of local Konkanis. With changing demography, especially growing sector of youth born and/or raised in North America, Konkanis have slowly started drifting away from our culture. The new immigrant’s outlook, needs and expectations are much different than those who have come just 10 to 15 years back. The community’s needs are also changing fast. To keep our community together and strong there is a definite need of an umbrella organization that provides a platform to facilitate as a channel for keeping in touch with our culture, food, festivals etc. This will help provide networking opportunities among each other, and a platform for their kids to mingle and learn. NAKA is an effective mouth piece for the Konkani Community of North America on all matters that affect the betterment of our Community. NAKA is also a vehicle to keep a strong bond and relationship between the Konkani communities in North American and other countries including our motherland India.

How can the Konkani community help NAKA?

The previous NAKA Board (20--) included 17 members and was not operative effectively.

In addition to the founding three members, the new Board members were the leaders of the Sammelans held in Houston, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Canada. Several Board Members were reluctant to continue due to other commitments and requested that they be dropped from the Board. The consensus was that there was a need to start with a smaller team, a new charter, mission and goals, so the Board decided to seek nominations for the five positions from within the existing Board. Since NAKA had no membership system at the time, there was no formal process for nomination within the entire Konkani community. The nomination process was open for about a month. Elections were held at the Board meeting (held in Sheraton Conf. Room) in New Jersey, one day before the Sammelan. Most of the current Board members were present during the election. It was a secret ballot system and the process was transparent and agreed to by everyone. All were satisfied with the process and the results. The new Board will formulate the term of the NAKA Board and how to open up the election to a wider community. They will likely consider a membership system and term limit for the Board. It is likely that they will seek input from the community in this regard.

The new Board may consider adding new members at an appropriate time should they find it necessary. We humbly suggest that you provide feedback and input as the new Board moves forward in hopes of improving these processes in our Members Suggestions & Ideas tab. All input is greatly appreciated.