Samaritans is the social initiatives club of the Management Development Institute (MDI). It aims at inculcating a culture of social responsibility among aspiring managers of today through various events within MDI as well as by working with NGOs and corporate on significant projects. The objective is to harness the management acumen of ManDevIans in making a difference to the society.
Though the members of the club play an important role in every activity the Samaritans conduct, they act only as facilitators in the whole process. Samaritans is driven by the volunteerism of MDI students, without who not a single activity could be made possible.
Following is a summary of on-going activities which Samaritans conducts at MDI:
• The Literacy Drive
The drive is an ongoing activity aimed at teaching the mess workers aimed at getting them to a basic level of literacy and general awareness that will make their work easier for them and provide them the opportunity to grow in their careers.
• The Newspaper Drive
The drive is a fortnightly activity that raises funds for the club’s activities through the sale of used paper, at the same time, encouraging the practice of recycling and reuse.
• Blood Donation Camps
Samaritans, in association with organizations like the National Thalassemia Welfare Society organizes periodic blood donation camps where the entire campus comes forward to enthusiastically ‘donate blood to save lives’.
• Awareness Drives and Cause of the FortnightM
The drives are undertaken from time to time to create awareness among the batch. They are aimed at reducing wastage of food, electricity and water on campus. The club has initiated another initiative called the ‘’Cause of the Fortnight’’ which creates awareness about a cause every fortnight through information distribution, activities and competitions generating awareness amongst the batch about important issues.
• Tree Plantation Drives
The club also organizes tree plantation drives. Saplings are planted in certain identified areas close to MDI and arrangements are made to ensure that they are taken due care of so that they go on to become flourishing trees. Thus, Samaritans creates a direct impact on the environment and ensures a better world to live in.
• Old Reusable Materials Donation
The club also encourages people on the campus to donate old clothes that are then distributed through NGOs. These organizations make use of these clothes for relief work, and for providing clothing to underprivileged sections. The drive also takes place specifically for collection of winter clothes. The drive is separately conducted when a batch of students leave campus such as when the senior batch graduates or exchange students leave so that all reusable materials like books, buckets, utensils, mattresses, etc. can be collected for donation
• Visit to Deepalaya
Volunteers take out time on various occasions like Childrens’ day to visit Deepalaya School, nearby MDI. They teach children through games, computers etc. They employ the method of experiential learning to make studying fun for children. Further, they organize dance workshops and counseling sessions for them. Their efforts have already begun to bear fruit so that the children look forward for their next ‘class’.
• Collaborations through Live Projects and Tie Ups
Samaritans goes beyond being a social initiative club by working with the Government, NGOs and CSR departments of corporate to identify opportunities where students can utilize their management prowess to make a difference to the society. The Bal UrjaRakshak Mission (http://www.burmission.org/) and Disha (http://2010disha.wordpress.com/about/) are sterling examples of productive collaboration in the past. There are many more projects in the pipeline for MDI students.
Besides the ongoing activities mentioned above, the club also conducts some events:
• Sanskriti Samaritans Week
Samaritans in collaboration with the cultural club of MDI, Sanskriti, conducts a week filled with activities that combine fine arts and cultural events with the mission of creating awareness. The week includes performances by artists, street plays by students and blood donation camp for the MDI fraternity, among many other activities.
• Samaritans in Festivals
New on Samaritans’ agenda, the club plans to collaborate with MDI’s flagship festivals Imperium, Illumina and Delphique to be able to leverage them as a platform for pushing its cause further.
• Fun @ Work for the mess and housekeeping staff
They serve us food throughout the year, clean our rooms and keep our toilets tidy! It is only right that we make them a part of our celebrations at least once in a year. Samaritans conducts Diwali celebrations, sports tournaments and gifts distribution for the mess and housekeeping staff of MDI, to make them feel at home and feel wanted!
As is reflected from the activities above, Samaritans stays true to its motto “Empowering people. Changing lives.”
For more recent updates, keep visiting the Samaritans blog: http://samaritans.mandevian.com