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SevaYatra - Experience

Healthy Tree Healthy Kids! Service Project with Canopy in Bay Area



Seva Yatra partnered with Canopy to kick-start a series of service days for Infosys in the Bay Area. It was a pleasant Sunday morning, when a group of 13 dedicated volunteers from Infosys gathered together at the Green Oaks Elementary School in East Palo Alto.

 The task at hand: Young Tree Care. Canopy is a local environmental nonprofit dedicated to planting and protecting trees in parks, schools, and along streets of Palo Alto and neighboring communities. The service involved weeding and mulching young trees so that they could grow into healthy, beautiful and tall trees giving the school much needed greenery.

After a short demonstration by Mike from Canopy, our dedicated volunteers attacked the weeds with shovels, rakes and bare hands (well protected by gloves).  Weeding was perhaps one of the hardest tasks, but the group got through two very rough patches in a span  two and a half hours. Work was peppered with conversations about what are other ways in which companies can get involved, families can engage with their local communities and what are the most effective ways to give back. The day ended with a delicious falafel wrap and a controversial Baklava, some thought it was sinful while others thought it was well deserved. Big shout out to Archana’s 6 year old who, with her mini shovel was weeding through the day, and all other little munchkins who made it out there.!

This amazing group, put the Green back in Green Oaks Elementary!

Some quotes from the Infosys Volunteers:

  • We'd like to do such activities with our teams instead of or in addition to team dinners. 
  • My wife and I have been thinking how we can do such with our children, I'm glad I found out about Canopy. 
  • This is the first time I've ever done something like this, it's great to be able to come out here and help an under- served area.
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Duke MBA Students Volunteer with Street Children

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Duke University’s Cross Continent MBA (Duke CCMBA) program conducts brief “in-country” residency programs in important business centers around the world.  The MBA students conduct in-depth academic study before and after these residencies which take place in locations such as Dubai, St. Petersburg, and Shanghai.  In April 2011, the CCMBA program held a two week residency program in New Delhi.  As a complement to their academic seminars and corporate visits, the social Entrepreneurship and Non-Profit Club approached SevaYatra to organize an educational service experience in Delhi.

Fourteen CCMBA students kicked aside jet lag and spent an engaging morning at Salaam Baalak Trust (SBT), an organization which serves street children.  The CCMBA students participated in the City Walk Tour, an entrepreneurial venture of SBT that raises both awareness and money.  The group spent time with three of SBT’s older youth, hearing about their lives and being guided through the streets and alleys near the New Delhi Railway Station- one of the primary landing points for abandoned and runaway children.

After refreshments and snacks, the Duke CCMBA split into two service groups.  One group spent time as business consultants to the organizers and guides of the City Walk tour, assessing current challenges and brainstorming potential approaches.  The second group spent time interacting with the 50+ boys who live at SBT’s main office, playing games and even challenging each other to a push up contest!  The morning ended with lunch in a local restaurant, providing time to reflect on the learnings and activities of the day.

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Nasscom Foundation- My Kartavya


In honor of National Technology Day (11th May) and World Environment Day (5th June), Nasscom Foundation and SevaYatra partnered together to organize a service project at Ummeed Home for Boys on May 28, 2011.

Nasscom Foundation recruited 30+ volunteers from its member companies.  The service project started with a brief tour of Ummeed Home and orientation to the issues involved in working with boys who were formerly abused, neglected, abandoned, or living on the street.

After an icebreaker, the volunteers divided up into smaller teams with the boys and set off around the Ummeed campus on an environmental scavenger hunt.  Using a checklist prepared by SevaYatra, the boys clicked digital photos of the environment-related items such as “find something that is naturally red” or “find something that pollutes”.  After identifying and taking photos of most items, the teams returned to the classroom to turn the photographs from the scavenger hunt into a powerpoint presentation.  The boys furthered their skills in using powerpoint technology.  They also practiced their live presentation skills as well, with most of the groups having one or two of the boys share with the entire group.

The session included a treat of cold drinks and juice, ending with a big group photo.

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