Sonu S Shibu, a native of Alappuzha, the nature hub of Kerala, is a 23 year old student currently pursuing his graduation on B Tech Food Technology from TKM INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, Kollam under Kerala Technological University. He is an active public speaker cum orator who firmly advocates for youth empowerment towards national development. He works as a catalyst for many social service organisations and NGOs indulging in many socially committed strives. Sonu was awarded as one of the best youth parliamentarian of Alappuzha district and was a recipient of international youth exchange program organised by ministry of youth Affairs and Sports. He is the volunteer secretary of National service scheme at KTU NSS and Currently works as the UN 75 global ambassador of climatic action on behalf of Albertian foundation.
VOLUNTEERING FOR ME Being a young citizen of a nation with such a diverse population and legacy, I firmly believe that each and every student while pursuing their education should firmly consider the fact that personality development, and social responsibility should be attained simultaneously during the period of their education through volunteering and that exposure should be nurtured to develop socially committed endeavours throughout the journey of life.This will indeed reflect towards national integration. VOLUNTEERING STORY I started my volunteering journey way back in 2014 when i was studying at ninth standard, Now that journey reached a time span of 7 years. Throughout these years i have collaborated with a few government and non government organisations including NYK, NSS, UNV, Samoohika Sannadasena, STAR etc. The initial spark that guided me towards volunteering occured when i visited an old age home as a part of a charity visit from school. I talked with the grandparents at the old age home and all they have to tell us was the story of ignorance that made them reach there. Those tears had fallen on my mind which made me to start a new journey. Always my inspiration has been evolved out of my responsibility and commitment.The inner force inside me have guided me to a journey of compassion, self reflection and mutual respect. VOLUNTEERING JOURNEY My volunteering journey focused mainly on identifying socially and economically vulnerable sections and communities of the society, initially trying to understand their needs and what really they lack, thereby providing a strive to dissolve the deficit that they face when compared to others social backgrounds. Apart from such works my secondary concentration lied on social awareness on different topics. Me and my team tried to provide a sense of addiction towards life among the youths simultaneously a sense of social responsibility boosting among the elderly ones. My initial volunteering days passed through my school days which predominantly focused on charity works and sanitation projects. Me and my friends initiated crowd funding for the needy ones and have identified public places which lacked proper sanitation facilities, we converted unused barren lands to productive ones and have tried to embrace agrarian path my creating vegetable gardens at schools and government owned lands.The crucial and productive part of my volunteering happened during the recent years especially for the past there years that too in my college life. There i joined hands with organisations like NSS, NYK, UNV.I took responsibilities to lead a team of many socially committed volunteers. I was appointed as the volunteer secretary of NSS unit in my college and hold positions of regional student coordinator of University NSS cell's blood wing, Natural resource protection force etc. During this time i joined hands with NYKS and collaborated the activities of NSS team with NYK. As a leader i drafted and implemented many projects including Ezhukone Edakkidam SC colony adoption and renovation, സ്നേഹാക്ഷരം project which focused on educational assistance to the economically backward students, MISSION CLEAN KOLLAM SAFE KOLLAM, PINK INITIATIVE for women empowerment, Environment conservation projects, cleaning projects, and a wide range of awareness projects. As the pandemic struck i joined Covid brigade under Samoohika Sannadasena and became the area coordinator of Support Team for Action and Readiness under District administration, Alappuzha and have completed more than 800 hours of active volunteering in a time span of past one year till now. Throughout this time me and my team had become an integral part of vaccination drives, massive awareness projects, crowd management and surveillance. As a great honour towards my initiatives on environment conservation , I was appointed as the student ambassador for climatic action at the UN global dialogue organised by UN and Albertian foundation in the month of June,2020. I conveyed my socially committed ideas through national youth Parliaments, Regional summits and declamation contests during the period of my volunteering which have provided so many assistance to my team's initiatives. As a firm acceptance towards my work, i was awarded as the best NSS volunteer recently at the university level and was nominated for higher level awards. I am still continuing my volunteering journey with new social endeavours with an aim of attaining social equality to everyone around us. PROJECT COMBINED PROJECTS UNDER NSS TENURE (2019-2021)0 ORGANISATION NATIONAL SERVICE SCHEME MISSION & VISSION Combined projects under the NSS tenure envisioned upon personality development of the volunteers through social service. The mission mainly focused on identifying the existing social problems or drawbacks and evolving out a solution through the enormous work force which the organisation posses. We categorised our projects into three namely unit level, regional level and state level. The unit level projects focused on the problems faced by the nearby localities of the college. These includes adoption initiatives, awareness campaigns and renovation works using the technical knowledge of volunteers. Regional and state level project focused on massive awareness drives and coordinated activities. PROJECT DESCRIPTION 1) സ്നേഹാക്ഷരം
This project was specially drafted for understanding the problems faced by socially and economically backward students in the educational sector and was committed to provide a solution for the problem. We have identified that the major reason towards ineffective education among such sectors was due to lack of proper awareness to the parents, unavailability of gadgets ( especially during pandemic ) and the mindset of students. We have provided initial counselling to the parents and students along with discussions with the officials. A preliminary identification of the number of gadgets needed was done and they were produced to the needy ones. Every weekend during the pre pandemic period we appointed volunteers to the nearby government schools and provided them extra academic classes on personality development and social aspects. Along with this we drafted syllabuses for respective categories and had took classes on a regular basis. During pandemic we utilised the online medium to continue our strive. The main aim was to ensure Right to education for every children in our locality. This mission got the assistance of 40 volunteers from our unit.
2)Edakkidam SC colony adoption and renovation
Edakkidam is a small village in Ezhukone panchayath under kollam district. There lies a Scheduled cast colony where a family of 92 in strength resides.This colony have lacked proper amenities and sanitation facilities. Moreover the use of tobacco and liquors was prominent among the natives. We have made a team to take a survey with the coordination of panchayath to understand the basic problems they face and what we could provide to them which would turn out to be effective. We have identified that their main problem was lack of awareness. We have camped with the full volunteer strength of our unit near to the colony in an LP school and drafted a project that comprehensively figured out to solve the educational, sanitation problems of the colony. We continuously visited the colony and established a good relationship with them and created awareness among them regarding sending their children for education and the harmful effects of using tobacco. We conducted renovation works at each and every homes within the colony and set up a smart class room at the nearby anganvadi for the children. Further we are currently working to structure a sewage channel for the colony to find a solution to the water logging abd sanitation. The project witnessed the contribution of 150 volunteers from our unit.
We have joined hands with Kerala IT mission towards creating a new chapter in the field of geo tagging by utilising our engineering knowledge. We have took the responsibility of geo tagging 20 Grama Panchayaths under Kollam district and have created a team of 3 for each Panchayaths. Currently we have completed 90 percent of the work and are planning to hand over the completed work by the end of November to IT mission.
4) Awareness campaigns
We have identified certain topics where we think that proper awareness needed to be administered which covered a wide range of problems ranging from communicable diseases, endemics, pandemics, social topics like child safety, women empowerment, environment conservation etc. We have utilised the modern means of social media, youth work force and government institutions to spread awareness on the mentioned topics and had completed 12 state level campaigns and 3 regional level ventures with the active collaboration of 200 volunteers in total.
5) Collaboration with samoohika Sannadasena
Our team appointed volunteers to work under Samoohika Sannadasena as master trainers and ground level volunteering during the pandemic situation. Me Myself has completed master training classes to 3 colleges and have crossed over 800 hours of active volunteering under covid brigade.
Apart from this projects which gave solidarity to several government campaigns like swatch bharath, poshan pakawda, Digital India, ആർദ്രം, ഹരിതകേരളം missions were initiated by us. Currently we are working on a massive mission named Clean Kollam Safe Kollam with district administration that focused on creating Renaissance in the social outlook of the Kollam city. LENGTH OF SERVICE The combined projects under NSS tenure started from fist of June 2019 and ended on 30th September 2021.However we are still continuing our valiant efforts with new endeavours and commited projects. The combined project gathered a total of 2936 hours till date and are still progressing ROLE IN PROJECT I was one among the Chief coordinator of combined projects . The major contribution which i delivered to the project ranged from initiating surveys, drafting out master plans, implementation at ground level and presenting and documenting the works and presenting it infront of the officials. I possessed excellent leadership, decision making and oratory skills which had helped me to figure out certain drawbacks and challenges that we have faced while the implementation of the project. I have utilised my oratory skills to present the project infront of officials and getting them sanctioned with financial assistance. I stood as a communication bridge with government officials and my college management in drafting out certain projects and at the same time i firmly believe that i have produced a path to all my companions and team mates in taking up new challenges and there by motivating them by standing along with them. The major positive that i have embraced while dealing with such projects was that i have sharpened my personality, found out the real men in me and the hidden talents i possess and the decision making, leader ship abilities inside me made me believe that i own a strong personality and have given me the courage to face any challenges in near future. IMPACT OF PROJECT The drastic impact these combined projects delivered to the society ranges from giving a sense of equality and satisfaction among different sectors of the society and at the same time nurturing the values of humanity among the beneficiaries of the project. It created a self belief among children, a social morale among elders, a kind of security among the lonely. The combined projects had created a channel to the government missionary towards identifying the problems in the society and at the same time spending the funds with at most effectiveness to harness more productivity. Awareness campaigns have dissolved many myths existed on many topics among public and had shown them a way to tacke certain issues. I would like to continue the combined projects to a secondary level with a view to spread the initiative nationally. Since the pandemic had restricted us from reaching to many direct interaction and downtrodden section of the society, we would like to create a network with other organization and are looking forward towards multiple collaborations. SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS
GOAL 1: No Poverty, GOAL 2: Zero Hunger, GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-being, GOAL 4: Quality Education, GOAL 5: Gender Equality, GOAL 6: Clean Water and Sanitation, GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, GOAL 10: Reduced Inequality, GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, GOAL 13: Climate Action, GOAL 14: Life Below Water, GOAL 15: Life on Land, GOAL 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal
1. Selected to International Youth Exchange program for the academic year
2021 – 2022.
2. Best NSS Volunteer award at university level (2020-21)
3. National Youth Parliament Festival State Level participant.
4. Best youth parliamentarian of Alappuzha district.
5. National declamation contest state level participant on "Patriotism and nation building".
6. UNDP, NSS & NYK special national youth parliament participant Ernakulam
7. UN75 Albertian foundation student ambassador for climatic action at UN global dialogue.
8. Completed more than 800 duty hours under Samoohika Sannadasena.
9. NSS KTU state level "vegappoot" magazine sub editor.
10. Event coordinator of NSS KTU state level Kerala Piravi celebration "
11. NSS KTU blood cell regional student coordinator.
12. NSS regional volunteer secretary meet main coordinator.
13. Best video award for NSS KTU Gandhi Smruthi inspirational video
14. SVEEP best video for election campaign, team member.
15. Nava Keralam Yuva Keralam, direct interaction with CM.
16. NSS KTU state level online cultural fest main coordinator
17. Voluntary secretary of 700 unit of NSS KTU cell
18. Adoption and renovation of a colony near college.
19. Main coordinator of online classes conducted for students of adopted colony -
20. Main coordinator for helping students of fisherman colony in Kollam, Kerala
21. Main coordinator of subiksha keralam project proposed by govt of Kerala at
22. Main coordinator of mask challenge undertaken by NSS KTU state cell.
23. Team member of college disaster management team.
24. Volunteer of Sannadhasena which was put forward by govt of Kerala as part of
Covid-19 immediate response team.
25. Sannadasena master trainer
26. Won prizes on a few APJAKTU state level NSS programs.
27. CBSE Kalotsav winner
FUTURE PLANS I would like to create a social circle that connects all the voluntary organisation and youngsters and bring them under one umbrella and try to pool the combined efforts to create productive outcomes to social problems. TGF could give us guidance and support regarding identification of certain social problems and could create a wide channel to connect with authorities and organisations and at the same time could give assistance and training to volunteers under our firm.
Are you an aspiring volunteer, put your ideas into action at National Volunteers Hackathon 2021 www.socialsolutionsindia.in/national-volunteers-hackathon-2021