Feeding India is a not-for-profit organization started in 2014 by Ankit Kawatra with a simple mission- to solve problems related to hunger, malnutrition, and food wastage. In just 4 years, it has grown into a nationwide organization with over 8500 volunteers, based in 57 major cities. These efforts and hard work has allowed them to feed over 12 million meals and propelled them further towards their dream of ending hunger in India. With an aim to contribute to this noble cause, students at SNU have established a Feeding India Chapter right here on campus. Since then, it has blossomed into a society of more than 60 students.
As a society working towards the betterment and welfare of the country, FI-SNU organizes the Social Entrepreneurship Summit annually. It is a platform that brings together various social entrepreneurs from different parts of our country under one roof, with the objective of inspiring the upcoming generation of taking the responsibility of improving our society. This year, however, they went one step further by inviting 5 organisations – ROPIO, Give Me Trees, Friendicoes, MyChild App and Bhumi- working for a variety of causes, that would recruit and offer summer internships and volunteering opportunities to SNU students.
Organized on April 8, 2018, the event was a grand success. The event began with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp and welcoming of all attendees by Aakriti Lalwani and Tanishq Satija, comprising of over a 100 people. It was kick started by a rousing speech from Ms. Srishti Jain, co-founder of Feeding India, who talked about the beginning of the organization, their initiatives and vision for the future. Next, Ms. Divya S., the Catalyse Manager of Bhumi, one of the largest youth volunteer non-profit organizations, gave a presentation. Bhumi works in the fields of environment, education, and animal and community welfare. This was followed by a presentation by Swami Prem Parivartan, aka People Baba, the founder of Give Me Trees, who started planting trees when he was ten and has planted over one crore trees in India ever since. He emphasized on the importance and the urgency of the need to plant more native trees, and proffered a warm welcome to anyone who wishes to volunteer and receive training in order to contribute to the cause. Next up was Friendicoes, an NGO whose roots trace back to 1979, that specializes in animal welfare. Through their presentation, they shed light on their mission and vision, their services and shelters, and the challenges that they face by working in a field like this. Mr Harsh Songra, the founder CEO of the MyChild App and a Forbes 30 under 30, was the next speaker. He discussed developmental disorders, and through his example, illustrated the need for an app like MyChild that could detect developmental problems in children between the ages of 0-2 years. The final speaker of the day was Mr Murphy Jones, founder of ROPIO- Reach Out and Pass It On, an organization that works with at-risk children and provides them with opportunities to reach their full potential. He talked about the reason behind starting ROPIO, his motivation for working harder, the ever increasing need for more volunteers and the future goals of ROPIO.
The end of the first phase of the event was marked by an interactive lunch session in the C-D atrium. A wide array of scrumptious food was served, which included cutlets, pasta, assorted breads, a variety of vegetables and dessert. The food, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian, was served by the DH1 service team and was delectable.
After a break of half an hour, the event moved onto its second phase, and interview process for all the candidates began. Each NGO was allotted a room wherein the candidates were interviewed individually or in groups, depending upon the interview model of the NGOs, and many students walked out of those rooms with an internship in hand. Overall, the result was great with over 35 students getting a social internship with one of the NGOs, or offers from others.
The attendees walked home with inspiration from the entrepreneurs, awareness about the various social issues facing us and many internship opportunities. Delicious food was the cherry on top. Ultimately, FI-SNU achieved what it had planned out with flying colours, and very flawlessly, one might add.