Although Bakul promotes the spirit of volunteerism in all its activities, there are certain programs exclusively designed to promote volunteerism. Since Bakul believes in breaking the distinction between a defined set of benefactors and beneficiaries, volunteer and youth development is a key activity.
International Volunteer Day, 5 December:
In partnership with UNV, UNDP, CYSD and RCDC, Bakul Foundation has been organizing the International Volunteer Day celebrations in Bhubaneswar. Every year, on 5 December, a few hundred young volunteers congregate and listen to inspirational speeches by leaders and peers, get inspired by the work of the exemplary volunteers, who are recognized and get moved by the movies and songs they see and hear.
International Day of Service:
With the understanding that many young people are probably more inspired to volunteer after an opportunity to do so more than any speeches, Bakul decided to create this excuse for people to volunteer in partnership with other friends across the world. This event celebrated in May, is however, celebrated in the biggest way in India in about 25 cities by volunteers of Bakul and their friends, who go to orphanages, old age homes etc. and offer a few hours of service.
The Joy of Giving Week:
This is a national festival of giving celebrated from 2 to 8 October every year and since the beginning in 2009, Bakul has taken a lead role in the celebrations in Odisha. From Nandita Das doing storytelling at the Bakul Library to Bakul organizing activities to mobilize people to contribute such as Vastrasamman in partnership with Goonj for whom we did the major mobilization within Odisha, and mobilizing at the time of disasters with media support, Bakul has played an active role naturally since Bakul has been identified as an organization where people give with trust.
Bakul believes in breaking the distinction between a defined set of benefactors and
beneficiaries. It believes that a real movement can happen when everyone is both a
benefactor and a beneficiary. Therefore, some Bakul volunteers try and help the other
Bakul volunteers. For instance, Bimal Rath, a leading leadership coach in India has
designed a Volunteer Leadership Module with his partner, Bhabani Mohanty and they have
organized leadership workshops for the volunteers. Sambit Lenka, a certified Life Coach
and Social Entrepreneur, also conducts Leadership Workshops for volunteers whenever he
is in Bhubaneswar.
In addition, other volunteers have organized leadership programmes through theatre etc. Bakul also endeavours to build skills of the volunteers and organizes training programmes on storytelling, theatre games, documentation, filmmaking, puppetry etc for the volunteers.