Want to Volunteer

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#1 Oct 31st, 2017, 18:41
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  • AlexandraRoque is offline
#1
Hello,

My name is Alexandra, I am 34 years old and my purspose in life is to volunteer in India. I love India and I would like to help.

The thing is I have a 4 year old son who has to come with me, because I can't leave him.

I would love to work with orphanages. in Tamil Nadu... But it could ne something else really

I just am trying to figure out if my son is welcome or not, by conditions.

If anybody can help me please I would be so glad.

Thank you!!
#2 Oct 31st, 2017, 19:18
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  • atala is offline
#2
HI, and welcome to Indiamike.

At this place your son would be welcome (most likely, I am pretty sure)
http://sadhanaforest.org/india/
but it is not an orphanage.

Also in this place:
http://www.jwalahome.org/aboutus.php
I know the founder, the lady in black saris in the photos.

It is also supported by this: https://www.kindia.nl/en/kindia-in-india/jwala-home

Both places are near Pondicherry. Sadhanaforest would be more fun for your kid though.
#3 Nov 1st, 2017, 12:21
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  • Sungazer is offline
#3
Hi Alex,

I am also looking into volunteering and i've found DARPAN helpful- it is a data base of government registered NGOs in India. Browse by state, sector or use search to pinpoint it even more.
Many of listed NGOs have web pages hence you can contact them and ask them everything you want to clarify.
#4 Nov 8th, 2017, 19:34
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  • NonIndianResident is offline
#4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sungazer View Post i've found DARPAN helpful- it is a data base of government registered NGOs in India.
Sorry, DARPAN is not a data base of government registered NGOs in India. On the page itself, it says:
Quote:
The NGO-DARPAN lists the number of VOs/NGOs in India based on self-declared information. This does not imply that organizations are endorsed or recommended by the NITI Aayog / MeitY-NIC or by the concerned Ministries/Departments/Government Bodies.
So it seems to be like any other internet page trying to get NGOs to list themselves on it.
#5 Nov 8th, 2017, 23:03
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  • JOHNLORD is offline
#5
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexandraRoque View Post Hello,

My name is Alexandra, I am 34 years old and my purspose in life is to volunteer in India. I love India and I would like to help.

The thing is I have a 4 year old son who has to come with me, because I can't leave him.

I would love to work with orphanages. in Tamil Nadu... But it could ne something else really

I just am trying to figure out if my son is welcome or not, by conditions.

If anybody can help me please I would be so glad.

Thank you!!
I have said this before, many years ago, I don't think foreigners should come to India and be allowed to interact with children.

The fact that you have a kid is neither here nor there. This is not directed at you personally but to any foreigner .

It may sould rude, but better to be rude than let a child get into a difficult situation. As I said before why not volunteer with kids in your home country.

I know this is not the sort of welcome you expect on a forum but you can never be too careful.
Lord, Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to hide the bodies of those people I had to kill because they pissed me off.
#6 Nov 9th, 2017, 01:48
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  • nycank is offline
#6
Quote:
Originally Posted by NonIndianResident View Post Sorry, DARPAN is not a data base of government registered NGOs in India. On the page itself, it says:


So it seems to be like any other internet page trying to get NGOs to list themselves on it.
In India, NGOs fall under three broad categories - Trusts, Societies, and Sec 8 Companies. Many states have their own regulations. Hence there is not currently a single central governmental organisation that holds that data. Foreign NGOs that will staff (paid or volunteer) foreigners have to get permission from the Reserve Bank of India and also a No Objection Certificate from the Ministry of External Affairs.

Enabling legislations are also varied. State Trust Acts of various states or Bombay Public Trusts Act, 1950; Societies Registration Act, 1860 and finally the Indian Companies Act, 2013.

In short, a mishmash !
#7 Nov 9th, 2017, 05:24
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  • NomadicBoo is offline
#7
Quote:
Originally Posted by JOHNLORD View Post I have said this before, many years ago, I don't think foreigners should come to India and be allowed to interact with children.

The fact that you have a kid is neither here nor there. This is not directed at you personally but to any foreigner .

It may sould rude, but better to be rude than let a child get into a difficult situation. As I said before why not volunteer with kids in your home country.

I know this is not the sort of welcome you expect on a forum but you can never be too careful.
Not sure why you'd stop at foreigner? I'd apply an insane amount of scrutiny to anyone wanting to volunteer with children, regardless of borders.

However, once I'd been through that, I'd want the best qualified people to help said children (psychiatrists, nutrionists, teachers etc) also regardless of borders.

I sense (and may be wrong) that the OP wants to use volunteering in India as a way to be in India. That doesn't mean there aren't foreign visitors with credentials and pure motives who are equally as well placed/better to help than a local volunteer.

NB
"See the World, then see India - because the World is an anti-climax"
#8 Nov 9th, 2017, 08:46
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  • JOHNLORD is offline
#8
Quote:
Originally Posted by NomadicBoo View Post Not sure why you'd stop at foreigner? I'd apply an insane amount of scrutiny to anyone wanting to volunteer with children, regardless of borders.

However, once I'd been through that, I'd want the best qualified people to help said children (psychiatrists, nutrionists, teachers etc) also regardless of borders.

I sense (and may be wrong) that the OP wants to use volunteering in India as a way to be in India. That doesn't mean there aren't foreign visitors with credentials and pure motives who are equally as well placed/better to help than a local volunteer.

NB
NB you are right, and that goes without saying. The point I was trying to make was I don't see why Fred Bloggs and Jane Doe come here and try and volunteer with kids.

I agree once they had been vetted, provided they can make a useful contribution they should be allowed to help. Unfortunately most people who try and volunteer are no more qualified than a beggar who you find on the side of the street.
#9 Nov 9th, 2017, 16:02
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  • NonIndianResident is offline
#9
Quote:
Originally Posted by nycank View Post In India, NGOs fall under three broad categories - Trusts, Societies, and Sec 8 Companies.
... Foreign NGOs that will staff (paid or volunteer) foreigners have to get permission from the Reserve Bank of India and also a No Objection Certificate from the Ministry of External Affairs.
Thanks. Do you happen to know what non-foreign (ie domestic) NGOs have to do in order to sponsor visas for foreign volunteers?
#10 Nov 9th, 2017, 17:20
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  • OldandRambling is offline
#10
I can't speak for Fred Bloggs, or Jane Doe, (who may be past helping anyone...), but for myself I am shocked at the plight of many young kids in India.
Helping kids into a better situation seems such a basic thing, almost anyone would see that as a good thing, and relativly easy to do. Providing nourishment, education, a place of safety, etc. Surely this is far better than leaving them unwanted on the streets?

I dispute that the average western volunteer has no more idea of basic hygiene, nutrition, first aid than your road side Indian beggar.

As to why Westerners would come to India to do such work, it seems India needs the help, it can be that simple.

Ed.
#11 Nov 9th, 2017, 18:24
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  • vaibhav_arora is offline
#11
Volunteers volunteer, as it makes them feel good about themselves. They are able to rid their guilt of either being born privileged or having worked themselves into a position thereof. It usually has little to do with what the outcome of the act of volunteering is.
#12 Nov 9th, 2017, 19:26
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  • Nick-H is offline
#12
Questions to be pondered. Is India in need of much of this voluntary work? And if so, in which sectors? Education? Healthcare? MBA coaching?

It's a genuine question: I don't know. From what I know of youngsters in this urban environment (And Mrs N has been a go-between for sponsors and sponsored for many years, although she is now retiring from this) it is not the educational facilities that are in short supply, it is the money that poor children need to live and take advantage of the facilities. Want to help an urban Indian child get educated and take the steps towards taking their family out of poverty? Choose (it's a gamble,I know) your trusted charity, and send cash. It will do a lot more good than telling stories in an Indian classroom for a few days and then disappearing. I'm not saying that that does no good at all: if people are any good at it, then I expect the children enjoy... but it doesn't help any of them to be back in class the following week. It also maybe doe not apply to those with educational qualifications who are ready and able to sign up for longer-term involvement somewhere where staff may be in short supply.

A Canadian friend of mine, a neither-rich-nor-famous musician, developed strong links with an African village, over many years of learning music there. Decoding to give back, he built a school. Yep, a whole school. Not a big organisation (with its company cars etc etc), although he did seek contributions from others, but just one guy. There are such people in the world. No doubt there is room for them somewhere in India too --- and probably they exist here.
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#13 Nov 9th, 2017, 19:51
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  • redninja is offline
#13
Quote:
Originally Posted by vaibhav_arora View Post Volunteers volunteer, as it makes them feel good about themselves. They are able to rid their guilt of either being born privileged or having worked themselves into a position thereof. It usually has little to do with what the outcome of the act of volunteering is.

Yes very true -- like the posts that come in -- Hi i'm doing a whirlwind tour of India, 20 states in 9 days, i have calculated that i have exactly 47 spare minutes in Calcutta next tuesday, can you give me address of Mother Teresa's house -- I wan't to help.

Mother Teresa should have been a national Indian treasure -- instead the catholics highjacked the show and turned her into another religious ikon, for there own benefit .
#14 Nov 9th, 2017, 23:52
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  • OldandRambling is offline
#14
It seems that most replies are annoyed by the idea that voluntary workers might get some job satisfaction or self esteem from their unpaid work?

If it helps both volunteer and recipient that does that have to be a bad thing?

I can see that telling stories in a school is not a great thing, but maybe working to give poorer kids a decent meal and at least start education is worthwhile?

I guess suspicion will always be there about changing kids religions, vaccinations, opening their minds to not paying bribes, etc, etc.

Ed.
#15 Nov 10th, 2017, 00:51
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  • Sagar40 is offline
#15
Seems I deleted my earlier comment by mistake. Reposting.

Hi Alexandra, To stay on your topic, I too would recommend Sadhna forest or volunteering at a school at Auroville or elsewhere in TN. Auroville is very kid friendly, other places can be kid friendly depending on the host NGO. I have my own small project here near Auroville on building better relationships but its not a registered NGO.

I personally feel the OP is free and welcome to volunteer in India and work with children as long as the rules allow it. I volunteered in/for rural India as a US citizen of Indian origin for 15 years before I found myself. Point is that I was allowed to find my path. My preference is to discuss the topic on another thread.
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