Fundraising for causes Sarojini Naidu fought for

By: Taqdees & Chiara

Published On: February 13, 2021

Maheen is casually sitting in a rustic themed cafe, sipping hot coffee and reading her favorite book.

Maheen: (reading)I say it is not your pride that you are a Madrasi, it is not your pride that you a Brahmin, it is not your pride that you belong to south India, it is not your pride that you are a Hindu, that it is your pride that you are an Indian.” - Sarojini Naidu

*Shalini enters the cafe.* 

Shalini: Hey! What are you reading? 

Maheen: Hi you! A book on Sarojini Naidu’s quotes. Everything she has done to empower women and the education given to them; it’s remarkable. I’m considering paying for my helper daughter’s school fees this year, and somewhere I think this reading a little of this book every day has pushed me harder to make that call.

Shalini: That’s really thoughtful Maheen! You definitely should. 

Maheen: But how? It costs 30,000 Rs! I really do want to do this, but quite honestly with the rent, ghar ka kharcha and the money I’m sending to aie and baba, I’m not sure I’ll have an amount good enough to cover up the cost of the fees. 

Shalini: Why don’t you give fundraising a try? It has worked very well for a cause like yours.

Maheen: I have heard of it, don’t really know how it works exactly.

Shalini: It’s simple Maheen, It raises a small amount of money from many individuals to reach the required funds for a cause and everything happens online so it is totally hassle-free.

Let me give you an example, Nidhi Khandelwal and Aditya Krishnan are Teach for India fellows who started a fundraiser on ImpactGuru to raise funds for 10th-grade students at Elia Sarwat School, Malwani, Malad. You must be knowing that Malwani is one of the largest slums after Dharavi. It is a community that is known for crime and drug abuse. 40% of these students could not begin their 10th-grade studies due to financial liabilities. And you know what! The fundraiser raised over INR 10 lakh. They are now preparing for their board examinations. 

Maheen: Wow! That sounds unreal. Do you think I could start a fundraiser for women’s empowerment and education? Like Sarojini Naidu started the women’s India Association in1917 to help women who suffered socio-economically and also fought against illiteracy, child marriage, and other social ills.

Shalini: Yeah, you totally could! That way you can pay school fees for many girls like your helper’s daughter. Even today there are so many girls who are deprived of education for various social and economical reasons. Have you heard of Moksha? she is a single mother and she started a fundraiser to empower young girls with education. That’s not all, she started a ride from Kashmir to Kanyakumari with the aim to educate 100 girls and raised 3,38,139 for her cause from 93 donors. Her story and vision are nothing less than breathtaking.

Maheen: She sounds like a modern-day Sarojini Naidu. A cause like this is exactly what Sarojini Naidu would stand up for. 

Shalini: Yes! She inspired me and I started a support-fundraiser for a similar cause.

Maheen: What is a support-fundraiser?

Shalini: It’s simple if you want to support an ongoing fundraiser (let’s call it fundraiser 1), you can start a fundraiser 2 and raise funds by sharing it on social media which will reflect in the amount raised for fundraiser 1. 

Maheen: That is a very intelligent way to support a cause. 

Shalini: If I am not wrong, Sarojini Naidu was a very famous poet too. I have read about her during my literature studies. She started her literary career at the young age of 12. I have read about her play 'Maher Muneer' and her 1,300 line-long poem, 'The Lady of the Lake'. She has indeed been an example in welfare, education, and literature. 

Maheen: Yes, you are right. She is called the ‘nightingale of India’ because of her rich literature and poetry. She was also the first-ever female governor and first female president of the Indian National Congress. Apart from basic education, children should also be encouraged in extracurricular activities to identify their talent. Who knows, we might get the next nightingale of India. 

Shalini: Now that you mention it, an organization called The Apprentice Project (TAP) has created a remote learning program to teach socio-emotional skills to children from Indian government schools by teaching them a skill they are passionate to learn. You know how low-income schools lack resources to provide this kind of learning experience, and most of them under this project are children of daily wage workers. This is why they have started a fundraiser to inculcate various skills in students. 

Maheen: Even I want to start a fundraiser to raise funds for educating underprivileged children. My helper daughter’s school ack basic resources, I can raise funds to buy books, tables, blackboards and Wi-Fi for better learning. 

Shalini: That sounds amazing. This way you can follow the steps of our nationalist leader and poet. 

Maheen: Yes, I want to continue her good work just like the fundraisers you mentioned. Fundraising has actually made helping people financially, easy. 

Shalini: Yes, it is a really cool concept.

Maheen: *opens and starts a fundraiser*

Read more about how the magic of fundraising works!