Making a change

Helping hands

Making a change

There’s one thing in common between everyone in the world and that’s the excitement for weekends. Whether you are a student, a professional or even a retired person, weekends are synonymous with relaxing and unwinding.

While the city offers many activities for all age groups, there are a few who like to dedicate their time to working for the betterment of others. They prefer to volunteer for causes that they believe in and utilise their weekends in a different way.

Nisha Shetty, an engineering student, visits an animal shelter on the weekends. She says, “I absolutely love animals. When I heard about Charlie’s Animal Rescue Centre through my friends, I thought it would be the best way to spend my weekends. Even with my busy college schedule, I make sure that I go and spend time with the animals. It involves everything like giving them a bath, cleaning their cage and spreading awareness about animal rescue in different schools.”

Ask her why she doesn’t prefer to spend time at a mall instead and she says, “We get to do that on a regular basis anyway. When I can spend my time doing something that I truly love and help another being in the process, there doesn’t seem to be a second option then.”

Like Nisha, there are many others in the city who believe in spending their time doing something more constructive and positive. Ana Carolina Tramontini, a project manager, enjoys spending time at ‘Mustard Cafe’ during her weekends. She explains, “Apart from being a cool cafe to hang out at, the place also has a lot of events and meetings organised on a weekly basis. It has such a positive vibe to it and when the outings were clubbed with some interesting work, I was hooked to go back each time.”

Ana has been actively taking part in their programmes since December. She has helped organise bake sales, community visits and other weekly meetings. “We had a really wonderful bake sale during Christmas and it was a big hit. Another interesting concept was introduced this month for Valentine’s Day. While most people celebrate the day only with their beloved, we decided to dedicate it to all our loved ones. So each week was dedicated to a particular category like ‘siblings love’, ‘couples love’, ‘parents love’ and more. There was live music, an open mic and many interesting conversations. I can’t imagine spending my weekends anywhere else now,” she says.

While many are making an attempt on their part to contribute to the society, Sajin Sebastian, the co-founder of ‘Beyond Bytes Technologies’, likes to participate in volunteering programmes with his colleagues. He explains, “It is a part of the company CSR programme that we do something out of the box. The latest fun project was planting saplings in the city. It was a really good experience as we not only had a successful plantation drive but also learnt a lot about each other and ourselves in the process.”

Nevertheless, those who are part of volunteering programmes agree that they are a great platform to learn something new each time they do their bit. Surely then, they are giving their weekends an enjoyable and meaningful twist!

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