When was the last time you did something purely for your satisfaction and inner bliss? Or are you so busy trying to ace the ongoing rat race that you do not have time to give back to society? The need for a sense of belonging propels youngsters to go beyond the self and reach out to people and help them. SheThePeople.Tv spoke to some young girls about their enriching experiences of volunteering with NGOs across the country.
“It was during my college days when the desire to do something for society grew and evolved in me,” recollects Sonali Kathuria, an alumna of Shri Ram College Of Commerce. She has been working for CRY for almost a year and juggles between her office and teaching with utmost perfection.
I couldn’t do anything to help them financially but I thought I was doing my bit to help them – Ishita Chikkara
“Now when I look back, I know I had taken the right decision. It is the kids’ eagerness to learn and experience something new every time that compels me to devote my time, knowledge and resources for this,” she shares. She adds that she gets only a Sunday for herself but it is the kids’ smile that compels her to keep going.
While Sonali finds solace in the happiness that teaching less privileged kids brings to her, 22-year-old Ishita Chhikara talks about the life-altering experiences she had while working with NGO Salaam Balak Trust.
“Somewhere deep down, I started valuing my own life and the myriad opportunities I am bestowed with. Their miseries are never-ending. I couldn’t do anything to help them financially, but I thought I was doing my bit to help them.”
“Overall, I think volunteering made me more empathetic, more aware of my privileges, more compassionate and more confident” – Alka Rao
There are a lot of NGOs in India committed towards encouraging youngsters to inculcate the spirit of volunteering within them. Alka Rao, pursuing her masters in Biotechnology from Netherlands, has worked with one such organisation in the past that gave her a chance to redeem herself.
“I was a volunteer at a NGO called ‘Mukti: Ek Nai Soch’ during my third year of bachelor’s, under the ‘Igniting young minds’ project of Leaders For Tomorrow. My work was to help underprivileged kids with life skills. I saw that these kids were so bright and talented, yet their talent never got a stage because of their status in society and the common regressive ideology of ‘galli ke gande bacche’. But sitting down with these kids made me realise my own potential and boosted my self-esteem. These children believed in me, they trusted and respected me.”
She urged today’s young generation to keep some time aside for volunteering-related activities. “Overall, I think volunteering made me more empathetic, more aware of my privileges, more compassionate and more confident,” she confesses.
Shivani Nayyar, who worked with CRY as an intern an handled their project at NGO Saksham in Shahbad Dairy, calls this experience the most gratifying in the 22 years of her life.
Working there helped her debunk some important myths. she says,”The children I was working with were more inquisitive to learn than any well-endowed child of their age. That’s when I realised that a person must be gauged by his/her attitude.”
The immense personal growth that accompanies these sessions is overwhelming. “In the room full of English recitals and Maths problems, I think I am the one who was enriched more than the students there,” Nayyar remarked.
Well, it is good to see the young generation setting their priorities correct. Living in a country that boasts of its largest democratic dividend, I feel it is imperative for the youth to work for a cause that is larger than themselves.
Charvi Is An Intern With SheThePeople.TV