“Training is an essential element of learning and at NGO Day, no stone was left unturned to make sure that NGOs learn what they need the most – Self-belief, Human Essence & Stories of Impact.”
Facebook NGO Day, an initiative undertaken by Facebook in partnership with MASH Project Foundation, was organized in Varanasi on April 12, 2019, at Hotel Taj Ganges to enable NGO Community in Varanasi on how to leverage Facebook tools and strategies for wider social impact. The initiative brought over 300 NGO leaders together from all over Uttar Pradesh and resulted in collaborative learnings and interactions.
The opening ceremony commenced with a video presentation of NGO Day Success Story on Nipman Foundation, followed by an opening address by Mrs. Shelley Thackral, Policy Head, India & Central Asia, Facebook. This was followed by a welcome address by Mr. Rohit Singh, Policy Programs Manager, Facebook India & South Asia.
The introduction session, led by Mr. Aashish Beergi, CEO & Co-founder, MASH Project, saw interactions among the NGOs opening up to form bonds over experiential learning. This was coupled with discussion on critical Facebook Tools including Facebook Live, Insights, Creating Events and Facebook Groups. The emphasis remained on “Organic Content, Visual Appeal & Authenticity” to connect with people.
NGO Day Success Stories is the second phase of the initiative where storytelling is used to complement learning and engagement. The Varanasi edition of NGO Day brought the video story of Mr. Ajeet Singh, Founder, Guria India, who has used Facebook to rescue over 8,000 women from the menaces of Human Trafficking and providing them with an opportunity to lead their lives with dignity.
The next part of this phase included a live story from Mrs. Rajani Singh, Head, Mahila Samakhya Uttar Pradesh, where she shared how Mahila Samakhya has been working for the rights of Women in Rural and Urban areas of entire Uttar Pradesh and how Facebook enables her to share stories that in turn inspire and instil a behavioural change even in marginalised communities.
In order to foster application based learning, NGO Day participants created live campaigns in groups over causes that matter to them, using the tools they learnt during the workshop. The event saw over 20 live campaigns created over a span of 90 minutes.
The final stage of the event created a platform for NGOs to get their specific queries and challenges addressed, where participants asked questions related to Facebook Page, their content and how to engage their audience effectively.
Mr. Amit Saxena who runs Srijan Foundation in Lucknow shared –
“I have been following NGO Day since it was organized in Delhi but today I got a chance to travel to Varanasi and connect with change-makers, learn tools that I didn’t know and also got my queries addressed related to Facebook and our work, I feel Facebook has taken up a great initiative for NGOs and I am excited to see how NGOs from remote regions are also getting connected with their communities through Facebook”
The event left everyone with a sense of confidence that every member who got connected to the NGO Day Community can do what Nipun, Ajeet or Rajani could do, all we need is the support of the community and the right space to learn. Thus NGO Day in Varanasi closed with the promise to continue bringing the thriving non-profits together into one big community!
- Jyotika Taneja (MASHkot)