So one of the things on my list was to do something good for someone, in a sustainable way and not as a 100 buck annual donation ‘package’ to some poor child who only exists on a photoshopped brochure.
So its natural that I’ve been drawn to opportunities in the social services space. And after a few shout-outs into the universe, thankfully a few seem to have materialised.
The first one I’ve begun working for is a start-up NGO working for retired soldiers from the armed forces. As an external marketing consultant to the highly motivated bunch who are running this initiative, I’ve been exposed to some incredible facts about the sacrifices made by our soldiers. As a 5 generation civilian, I have never done more than a customary head nod to acknowledge the efforts of the armed forces. But the more I get involved in this project, the more ungrateful this country appears.
22 year old boys charge head-on into a mortar bomb or a get shot in the leg on their first day on the border. They lose their arms, legs and sense of sanity for the rest of their lives. Their wives keep ageing in hope of companionship and their parents shrivel up in the wait. The burden of their treatment and other financial needs keep piling on and the modest pension amount doesn’t do enough justice.
Trying to help these fellows though is like climbing down a rabbits hole with endless tapes of bureaucracy trying to trip you up.
I’m looking forward to the crawl!
Not only will I get to genuinely help people in need of genuine help, but also get to meet some fairly interesting people along the way.
A trip to the Naval base in Mumbai is due and I shall be reporting about that soon.
The other organisation I ‘may’ start working for very soon (plenty of talks have been done and I have a feeling we will be able to work very soon now), is well known and focused on bringing about educational equity for students across the country.
I’ve been following their work for ages and had applied to them on a whim one day, a few weeks before I cut loose (that was also the time I was taking lessons on classical music on Coursera! – so was pretty much all over the place) and they got back to me pretty soon. A few chats later, we’ve narrowed down on 2 or 3 projects in the space of communication (building awareness for the cause) and fundraising. The former I know and love, the latter I have no clue or expertise in.
But I’m up for the challenge and really looking forward to it.
The best thing about being cut loose, is letting the universe take you on a roller-coaster ride, let you try different, new things.. help you identify the ones you love and the ones you don’t. Hope I don’t get too dizzy.