Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Life post PRAKRUT

Seems like I just got down from a roller coaster ride... yea, I now experience a sudden slow down after a speedy bumpy ride with a safe landing.

There were days when I was juggling between mails, phone calls and work (of course). My days would begin with mom constantly saying 'aarthi aarthiiiiiiiiii.. ezhuduko... mani enna theriyuma.... iduku daan seekirama thoongu nu sollaren, ketta daane...' (I don't wish to translate and loose the charm of it :-)) and then I would sleepily come down switch on my lappy and start checking mails for updates from the team on the event.

It was almost 30 days of hard work concentrated over the weekends, that is how I would define our pattern of working. It was a complete phase of putting all learning into practice. We went step by step, sometimes jumped a few steps in anxiety and enthusiasm.

We did everything right from identifying the social issue of concern, the target audience, how we would want to attack the problem. At the end of these discussions, we decided to choose 'Environment' as the issue of target and we decided to host an event promoting the solutions instead of talking about the problem which is the usual style. That was how and when PRAKRUT was born.

Then we went about identifying target audience and the different activities that we would do as part of the event. School children were our primary target as a change brought in to the minds of young ones tend to stay with them all through the life. We also decided to approach general public thru the children. We planned to leverage the work of NGOs and corporates having solutions in this domain to bring forth the solutions.

Slowly we moved to the most important part of budgeting the whole event. This was the most funny task as each time we did, we got a completely new figure which was way beyond the previous times result. Thank God, none of us even our wildest dreams are doing any work related to finance. Till the last minute this the one constant variable.

All pre-work for the event soon started like inviting school children for the exhibiting their eco-friendly solutions, making posters for inviting them and writing rules. I almost felt like a school principal while editing the rules list. I was wondering how it would be if I were asked to come in school uniform on a weekend and how much I hated such things as a child.

Talking to NGO's, hearing their response, coaxing them to participate, answering wierd questions like 'will you give us food?', running behind them to get confirmation. It was all fun watching the story unfold. Thanks to Aruna for her immense patience in gathering the inputs and doing all the talking. I had enough of a bad experience right in the beginning :-)

The next round of running around was for the misc activities which turned out to take more effort and time than the main ones probably coz most of the important tasks were done by then.

Publicity poster making, visiting the venue, debating what food to serve thru the day, who will arrange, how to arrange, how much to spend - it all looks so simple and silly now. Writing mails to companies asking for sponsorship was the funniest of all. If only I show you the mails I wrote, you would laugh at it. All the realization of how to write a mail to a sponsor dawned after being grilled by Varsha (I hope Varsha is reading this :-)) one saturday afternoon. Oh man!! I almost lost hopes of having the event till she finally flagged off saying we are 70% complete.

It was a lot of learning - learning how to work in a team when people are in different frequency levels, how to ensure majority of them are not hurt and still put forward your opinions, how to use somebody's strenght, how to talk in a press meet (nothing will work if you don't know to speak kannada). What can I say when we had lots of praises at the end for this wonderful event. All the hard work seemed so much fun at the end.

Missing being on top of my mails, getting interrupted at work by phone calls, calling people, being in my own world of thoughts about the event. Missing all the people and the fun.

Life seems to now be moving like a goods train, so slow. Guess, this saturday would be the time to change gears and go on another roller coaster ride. Yep, time has come for my individual project - my FAC (field action component).


Pavithra said...

Do i require any decripter or spl software to decipher ur blog..huh!

Aarthi said...

:-) Know wat? It shows up perfectly on FF, the problem is all with silly IE. I am still wondering how it is showing up on FF. Anyways, I have changed the font and hopefully its readable now.

Chandu said...

I wish I made it to the event instead of lazying at home!

Aarthi said...

@Chandu - I thought u were not in town, else would have at least called and troubled you to come.