“You are born for some reason. You may not be an expert in any field, but identify what you are, who you are and why you are here. Involve yourself with any small activity where you can do justice and help the society. Never while away your time at any cost”
- V. Sivaramakrishnan (Vidya Bharati alumni, Tamil Nadu)
V. Sivaramakrishnan is an alumnus of Smt. Ramkuwar Devi Fomra Vivekananda Vidyalaya, Nehru Nagar, Chromepet, Tamil Nadu. For the last 21 years he has been diligently serving society in various ways. Recently Mr. Sivaramakrishnan talked about his zeal for social service via an interview, the excerpt of which is as follows:
Interviewer : Kindly give us a brief account of your academic background.
V. Sivaramakrishnan - I completed my schooling till the 12th standard at SRDF Vivekananda Vidyalaya, Chromepet (2006 batch). After that I did my graduation in commerce from Loyola College, Chennai and my MBA through Loyola Pondicherry Twinning Programme. I did my Master of Financial Management (MFM) degree from Madurai Kamaraj University, Chennai.
Interviewer : Tell us something about your social service.
V. Sivaramakrishnan - Since 1999, I have been associated with social service in several forms. Even before passing out from school, me along with other students from our school had started an organisation called ‘Sushaanthi Seva Charitable Trust’ under the banner of ‘Seva Bharathi Chromepet ‘, which was later formally registered as a trust.
The organisation was initiated by our Tamil Teacher, Mr Venkatesan. Initially we started with the activity called ‘Pidi Arisi Thittam’, where each student was requested to bring a handful of rice every week. We, as student volunteers from each class, would then collect the rice and pack them in sacks, and the school would then arrange in channeling these resources to the needy, such as old age homes nearby. What started as a value-based educational activity, encouraged us to take up more such activities such as temple cleaning, providing services in elderly homes and in Adyar Cancer Institute etc.
With time we passed out from our school but our group remained intact. With the support and help of like-minded people, we slowly were able to extend our activities to include more initiatives such as :
Career Orientation programmes , Motivation sessions and Career Counselling sessions for classes 10 and 12 students. Separate sessions for teachers are also conducted
Talent display contests and events in schools (especially in rural areas) for talent development among youths.
Tree plantation drives
Donation of groceries and other daily necessities to old age homes
Celebration of important festivals at Old age homes and orphanages
Provision of food to those in need
Financial help for education to financially weak students etc.
Interviewer : What inspired you to do social work?
V. Sivaramakrishnan - From my childhood, it was my school that inspired me. It makes me proud to state that I am an alumnus of Vidya Bharati. My sense of freedom, quick decision making capability and inclination towards social service has been instilled in me by my school.
I was not very good in academics, but my teachers encouraged my other talents. During my student days, I was selected as ‘Outreach Student of the Year’ as well.
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank my teacher Mr. K. Venkatesan (Ex Principal of Vivekanda Vidyalaya), who is like a God father to me. He was the one who guided and mentored me at every stage of my life.
My family also have supported me in all my endeavours and made it possible for me to reach out towards my goals.
Interviewer : Would you like to share any message with Vidya Bharati students?
V. Sivaramakrishnan - Nowadays everyone is busy with their own schedules. I would like to request all students that once you pass out from your school, take out some time and visit your school regularly. Stay connected, build teams and help others. Your work can inspire others.
Vidya Bharati Purv Chatra Parishad is thankful to Mr. V. Sivaramakrishnan for sharing his experiences with the alumni community.
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