Nawab Mehetab Nasreen - Primary Short-listed Nominee - Social Volunteer Awards 2021
Updated: Oct 22, 2021
I am Dr. Mehetab Nasreen, a doctor by profession and a volunteer by passion, I'm founder of the Project Monthlies, we work on menstrual and reproductive health awareness, I have been volunteering actively since 2013, gender issues being the closest to my heart, we, under Monthlies have spread awareness among 5000+ women, and we are happy to see the communities changing their perceptions about menstruation from being a taboo to a beautiful process ensuring life. I currently work as an advisory member with "Limitless Stree Project" of Reaching Sky Foundation and working as a "V Force Coordinator" with UNV India - V Force. I have represented Andhra Pradesh twice at the National Youth Parliament Festival and have been shortlisted (among top 2) to present a paper In the Round Table on Accreditation for Volunteering at India volunteering conclave, organized by UNDP and a winner of first season of "Nurturing Voluntrepreneurs" by Vartaleap foundation, ComMutiny and UNV India.
VOLUNTEERING FOR ME
I'm a doctor by profession, but the passion which drove me towards it was volunteering. For me it's a solace and keeps me positive and hopeful about a better planet, I believe that these small efforts by volunteers are the forces sustaining humanity on our planet both in material and intangible sense. Volunteering is that force in my life which replenishes me and helps me stay motivated and do better, as that smile on someone's face as a result of our volunteering is a priceless achievement.
I've been volunteering since 2010(12 years), But I'm actively volunteering since 2013 when I joined NSS and learnt how I can contribute my time and efforts to solve real issues of the needy, the inspiration behind my volunteering was primarily the feeling of empathy whenever I saw someone suffering, as a kid I was frequently prone to illnesses which means regular visits to hospital, the situation of people there pushed me to do something which can help them, it's how I started and the happiness in volunteering is the constant inspiration to keep me volunteering.
I have been a frequent patient to hospitals since 2006, my grand father was an AYUSH practitioner and there I noticed a lot of people who came to him didn't even have 8proper clothing and footwear, he used to help them and I saw that smile on their faces when they came back next time, atleast becoming free from their ailments, and now they can work and earn as they're healthy, this drove me to pursue Medicine (MBBS) with a hope that I can bring many smiles, but the real problem was about to uncover now as I got a seat in government medical college and hospital, there I saw the pathetic condition of people in my hospital, this was a bigger problem, far bigger than what I saw in my grandfathers clinic, here people were sick, on the top of it, many were left to die just because they didn't even have enough money to buy basic medicines / to move to higher centre on referral, most of them due to illiteracy don't even know the proper procedure through which they can get help from government and other NGOs working,
This is when I took up volunteering seriously as a tool to do the best I can to alleviate their sufferings, I joined NSS and eventually worked through food drives, fund-raisers and arranging basic amenities in hospital premises to patient attendants, NSS taught me leadership skills and I became the NSS Team Leader, which gave a boost to the impact in our campaigns, then with 2 other friends we started LOVING HEARTS ASSOCIATION to widen the scope of our volunteering activities and adopted an orphanage, located at a remote location (15 kms from main town), developed it in a way where kids now can self-teach the younger ones in the orphanage and ensured their regular school attending by arranging them a school minivan and other basic study materials. Then I joined NYKS as a resource person, undertook many projects with help of UN DYC, worked mainly on women issues and menstrual and reproductive health of women. .