Clubs like Rotary, Lions, Giants & Round Table, groups like Trekking, Running or Cycling groups, communities like the Marwari Association, Art of Living and Isha Foundation and recreational & sports clubs like The Tolly Club, Bombay Gymkhana celebrate #DaanUtsav as it brings their members together for a cause, thus building deeper bonds and infusing a greater sense of purpose into their activities.
Here are a few examples of how Groups, clubs and communities celebrate #DaanUtsav.
For any queries or more ideas on how to organise an event for groups & communities, get in touch!
Reach out here:
venkatkn at gmail dot com
Why should groups, clubs & communities celebrate #DaanUtsav?
The best thing about most groups and communities is that camaraderie and goodwill and relationships are at the core of these organisations. Regardless of whether the group is based on religious or spiritual beliefs; shares a passion like cycling, trekking, or playing bridge; is well-established like Lions or Rotary; is a gymkhana or club with an actual physical presence, #Daan Utsav is an opportunity to make a difference. It is a platform that appeals to those who are already inclined to giving, but more importantly it is an easy way to involve those who wouldn’t normally participate in social activities.
What kind of events work for groups, clubs & communities?
Different kind of clubs will have different initiatives. For example Rotary or Rotaract clubs already have a calendar of event and campaigns, so they just need to ensure that one or more of these existing initiatives falls during #DaanUtsav.
Some clubs may have their own non-profit organizations that they choose to support. For these kinds of organizations, building an event that involves celebrating what they already do or reinforcing and supporting those initiatives might be the best way to participate in #DaanUtsav.
For other communities and groups, that don’t have a chosen cause or NGO there are several simple initiatives, even ones that do not involve a large number of people, like a tree plantation campaign or a clean-up drive or coming together to cook and deliver food to people in need.
For clubs, societies and communities that have their own premises, some ideas are a seva mela or a day-long mini Ted X conference where you get social entrepreneurs to come in and talk about their work. Another popular idea is to hold a fun fair where part of the proceeds go to charity. You can even have a MasterChef contest for all the men who are a part of your club or your society, to let the men show off their cooking skills.
Click here to see a list of ideas to get you started.
Who can one approach for permissions to do this in clubs & communities?
Typically every club or community will have a secretary, chairman or a president along with a committee or set of office bearers. The best place to start would be to approach them. Not only do you require their permission, but having their blessings and support will be very valuable as they can influence the entire member body.
Many groups, clubs & communities do charitable events throughout the year. How does one convince them that they should celebrate #DaanUtsav?
While giving is a part of life and should be an on-going activity, #DaanUtsav is an opportunity to show the difference that can be made by millions coming together to give at one time. An example of this are the marathons that now are held all over India. Before the first large scale, well-organized marathon took place in India, there were a few die hard running fans in every city who would run every weekend in parks and their local neighborhoods. However the Mumbai marathon, and those that followed, dramatically increased the visibility of running as a cause. Now you see several thousand people in every city are running and fitness fanatics.
In the same way if those of us who already practice giving come together and do it on a large scale through #DaanUtsav, then we can link our small efforts in to one very large movement that creates a giving culture. So while your club should continue with their other activities, they should also have an event or campaign during #DaanUtsav.
How do you get maximum participation of members in your event?
After putting in hard work to plan your event, the best outcome would be to see wide scale participation. Here are some ideas:
How do you get more members to join you in organizing the event and promoting it?
Any event like this is more fun and more powerful if you have several people working together. The best way to get started is to ask other members who know you well to participate and form a sort of steering committee. Once a few dedicated and enthusiastic people are in place, then you can reach out to the general body of your club, society or group. Start with those who you know are socially inclined. Another important angle is to get people who are the key influencers within your group involved because we all know that not all members are equal. There are some who are more respected and active than others. So getting a couple of these influential and credible members to become part of your initiative will really help to get other people to join the event.
What are some of the objections/questions raised?
One of the most common objections raised is: we do this throughout the year so why should we do this again and we have already given an answer for why that should be the case. Sometimes the objections will be related to the availability of space related to specific dates around #DaanUtsav i.e. between 2nd and 8th October, sometimes it will be around that we have already planned things around that time. So typically, the best way to answer some of these is to think through or anticipate these questions and come up with solutions to them. For example if there is a question around security that if you are planning an event where everybody will bring cooked food and people are worried about how to be ensured that everything is secured and there is no risk of any external people coming and doing something. You answer that by thinking through the logistics of your event and being prepared with what security elements you are going to take care of.
For eg. all the equipment that will come in will be scanned or checked by somebody at the gates before it is brought in, you can offer to have a team of volunteers to support the security staff at the gate. So you kind of help the society prepare or the kind of club or group prepare for it by helping them put together the disclaimers, you know the terms and conditions for participation in the event, etc. So thinking through the kind of questions that could come and answering them in advance actually helps overcome a lot of these issues.
Here is a YouTube playlist which you can use to get more ideas and examples for organising your #DaanUtsav activity.
Click onicon to browse the playlist.
Kaun Test Karega
Send out a newsletter, notice or circular to all member institutions sharing about #DaanUtsav and inviting them to celebrate in various ways. Have awards for the members that celebrate in the most exemplary manner.
Charity Raffle / Virtual
A virtual raffle, housie or “tambola” where members donate items as prizes (spare new phones, crockery, travel accessories, bags, watches, etc.), and everyone buys tickets with the proceeds going to charity.
Card Carrying Membership
Virtual poker, rummy, bridge or other card games where everyone “buys in” and nominates a charity, money goes to the winners’ nominated charities.
Karaoke Idol Kaun?
Organise a karaoke fundraiser night with members. People pay for the event and vote for the best performance of the night. The raised sum goes to the winner’s charity.
Record a story in your native language and share it with children and the elderly.
One sign saves multiple lives
Sign up for organ donation and encourage your friends to do the same.
Get together with your members and set up a digital garage sale on Instagram, Facebook or any other online platform. The money raised can go to a charity of your choice.
Kaun Test Karega
Send out a newsletter, notice or circular to all member institutions sharing about #DaanUtsav and inviting them to celebrate in various ways. Have awards for the institutions that celebrate in the most exemplary manner.
Organise an event that brings all members together- around a theme that is at the core of the group or community (e.g., Yoga, Service, Spirituality)- and encourage all members to do acts of giving & kindness.
Gandhi For Gram
Identify a village nearby and get students/employees/members to visit and volunteer there for a day, to promote greater understanding of the challenges of rural life in modern times.
MKG 150 festival
Organise a festival in your school, college, office, club, group, association or apartment to celebrate Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary. The festival can include debates, essay contests, Khadi shows, films and other activities that represent Gandhi’s values. Audience/ participants donate to take part and the proceeds go to Gandhian charities.
Organise a march/walk involving your students/employees/members and also other organisations near your institution, raising awareness about causes and inviting the public to contribute in cash and kind.
Carry out tree plantation campaigns in nearby school/college campuses and grounds, parks, office campuses or in nearby plantation areas identified by environmental NGOs. Plantation can also be done in nearby rural areas.
Get participants to go on a run and collect all the plastic they encounter on the run, from the streets. The collected plastic is given to a recycler.
Seva Mela- Fun for a Cause
In a school, college, corporate, club or large apartment complex, NGOs put up stalls with food and games, and all proceeds go to charity.
Jail & Bail
Leaders (CXOs, Principals, Directors, Trustees, Office bearers) are “jailed for doing good” and others have to “bail them out” by donating to a charity of their choice.
Charity Raffle / Housie
A raffle, housie or “tambola” where members donate items as prizes (spare new phones, crockery, travel accessories, bags, watches, etc.), and everyone buys tickets with the proceeds going to charity.
Card Carrying Membership
Poker, rummy, bridge or other card games where everyone “buys in” and nominates a charity, money goes to the winners’ nominated charities.
Who’s The MasterChef? (MasterChef Kaun?)
In schools, offices, clubs, apartments, a Masterchef contest, where each participant creates, others “buy” food coupons, proceeds go to charity. The winner’s charity gets a special prize. Can focus on men cooking to change stereotypes.
Kara-OK Action (Kuch Achha Karao-ke)
Sing for a cause on karaoke, the audience buys tickets to listen, proceeds go to charity.
Preparing, collecting and distributing food to those in need on the streets or at shelter and care homes, or even to auto drivers at a stand, etc.
Set up a “kindness fridge” in a public place like an apartment, school, college, hospital and create groups of people who will ensure the fridge is stocked.
Record Audio Books
Everyone records an audio book for the blind.
In colleges, clubs, theatres, large corporates, large apartments, a TEDx/ Litfest type format featuring social enterprises, ticket donations to charity.
Bake Sale/ Art Sale
People exhibit their talents in baking/ other arts and sell their products, proceeds go to charity.
Adopt an Institution
Help a govt school, bus shelter, night shelter, newspaper stand, park get a complete makeover and take care of it through the year.
The Tiny Flea Garage Sale
Flea market within school, college, corp, apartment, club etc. where members bring items and others buy them, all proceeds go to charity.
Cycle/ Bike/Car Rally for a cause
A rally for a cause, where participants donate and fundraise to support the chosen cause.
7 Days 7 Givings
Pick 7 different acts of giving, one for each day of the #DaanUtsav week and get students/ residents /employees /members to contribute. The 7 acts could simply be 7 different items to be given (books on 1 day, clothes on another, etc.) or 7 types of activities (money, material, time, blood, skills, etc.).
Organise a collection drive for items in good condition, clean, mend and pack the donated items nicely and set up a “store” on a street nearby. Offer “coupons” to potential beneficiaries which they can use to “buy” the items that THEY choose from the street store, instead of being handed over something that someone else chose for them.
Pop-up #DaanUtsav booths in public spaces provide opportunities to donate for a particular NGO/cause.