DMU Square Mile India – Volunteering in Ahmedabad (February 2020)

Opportunity type:

Ref: 10003214


All DMU students are eligible to participate in this opportunity, and it would be particularly relevant to those with a demonstrable interest in contributing towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and volunteering in India. The maximum number of places on this opportunity is 25 and the minimum the trip will go ahead with is 15. DMU staff will be accompanying the group.

DMU students are only eligible to receive one extra-curricular trip bursary per year. Please check our eligibility criteria for further details.


Working alongside the Manav Sadhna charity, DMU Square Mile India volunteers help transform the lives of thousands, working on various community projects. During this two-week volunteering opportunity participants will have the opportunity to make a positive impact with the local community by engaging with one of the following projects:

Moving Together Moving Together are a creative dance social enterprise business based in Leicester. For the last couple of years, Moving Together have joined Square Mile India in travelling to Ahmedabad to deliver dance workshops in all five community centres of Manav Sadhna. Students will have the opportunity to lead on these sessions alongside the Moving Together team for groups such as anganwadi pre-school children, children of infant and junior age, young people, ‘Friends of the Environment’ ladies, and elderly women/men. The students will also have the opportunity to support Continuing Professional Development (CPD) training for Manav Sadhna staff. The CPD would be useful for DMU students as it would break down how to run a successful session, with ideas and suggestions for the creation of movement content for someone who may not be confident in dance. Moving Together can provide CPD packs for all staff and students.

Paryavaran Mitra Program (Friends of the Environment) – this nationwide initiative aims create a network of young leaders from schools across India, who have the awareness, knowledge and commitment to understand and meet the challenges of environmental sustainability. DMU students will have the opportunity to assist with a number of activities related to the programme, that will include delivery of the awareness programme to local schools.

Kitchen Project – Based at Manav Sadhna or one of their community centre ‘Ramapir no Tekro’, students will assist with preparation of food (including purchasing) and distribution/serving to the local community. As part of this project there will be opportunities for language/cultural exchange, as well learning (and teaching) new recipes.There will also be an opportunity to volunteer in the Seva Café, which is a local ‘pay it forward’ initiative.

Sports – across Manav Sadhna’s 5 community centres, students will coach/organise a range of games and sporting activities to children. These could include football, badminton, Frisbee, netball or handball. Rotating between the community centres, there may also be scope to organise a sports/tournament at the end of the volunteering week. Participants will be encouraged to fund raise ahead of departure to provide any equipment to be used as part of the activities.

Arts and Crafts – working across  Manav Sadhna’s 5 community centres (rotating between different centres), students will plan and deliver arts and craft activities to children. Participants will be encouraged to fund raise ahead of departure to provide a range of arts and craft materials to use in these craft sessions.

Elderly Care – volunteering in projects ran by Manav Sadhna, activities will include working with the Tyag Nu Tiffin project and their beneficiaries. Daily tasks could include delivery of tiffins in the community, food preparation, health awareness sessions, painting and decorating.  At Manav Sadhna there will be an opportunity to organise the Anna dan day where elderly women from the neighbouring slums come to collect monthly rations. Participants will have the opportunity to engage in DMU Local projects in Leicester with the elderly ahead of the trip such as the Santosh Centre and the Pop-in café, this will be organised by DMU Local team.

Earn N Learn – this project supports children in enabling them to focus on their education, while earning an income so that they can help support their families. Students will spend one week with this project exploring marketing strategies and research for their products etc., as well as assisting the Earn N Learn staff in their day-to-day business activities.  There will also be opportunities to engage with the children that are part of this project and deliver social activities as part of this volunteering opportunity.

Gramshree – preserving craft traditions, Gramshree supports women in the community with skill training in embroidery, patchwork, catering and stitching. Students will spend one week with this project exploring marketing strategies and research for Gramshree products. This will include assisting the staff in day to day business activities, conducting basic market research and developing creative assets including photography and digital content. The students will get an opportunity to engage with the craft making, assisting the women in various activities such as block printing, basic sowing etc. that are part of this project. There will also be an opportunity to assist in the Craftroots shop for retail experience.

Education – across Manav Sadhna’s 5 community centres (rotating between different centres),students will explore the way in which educational themes are developed and delivered within the community centres. Working with Manav Gulzar and Manav Jatan, participants will help and plan and deliver teaching sessions – producing resources (e.g. creative assets, worksheets, lesson plans, activity guidelines) that will allow the centres to use in future classes, beyond this trip. Participants will be encouraged to fund raise ahead of departure to provide any equipment to be used as part of the activities.

Each volunteering opportunity will have up to 5 places. Applicants are encouraged to include details of up to two projects they would like to volunteer on and their motivations, within their application. DMU Square Mile team will endeavour to place students in one of their top two choices.

Cultural activities

There will be opportunities for students to participate in cultural activities throughout the trip organised by DMU Square Mile India (pre-booking will be required). Students will also be encouraged to independently visit cultural sights and points of interest – details of which will be shared in a volunteering handbook, provided to all participants. On the last day, a farewell dinner will also be organised at the Seva Café, a payforward café ran by Manav Sadhna.

Travel and accommodation

Travel and accommodation will be booked by DMU Square Mile India for this opportunity, and students will be expected to pay the remaining amount following confirmation of their place. The #DMUglobal bursary and DMU Square Mile India bursary will be deducted from the cost of the trip.

Contact details

Visa information

In order to participate in this trip you are responsible for ensuring that you meet the Indian immigration requirements. Most students will require a tourist visa. Some nationalities qualify for an e-visa, a list of nationalities that qualify for an e-visa application can be found here . For nationalities that do not qualify for an e-visa, please note that application times and cost may vary and do not guarantee that a visa will be granted in time.

The #DMUglobal team will provide documents as required. You must ensure that you apply for your visa as soon as you have been formally accepted on to this opportunity by #DMUglobal. You are responsible for checking processing times and meeting all application requirements in order to ensure that you receive your visa prior to departure. Please be aware that immigration decisions are made by individual embassies.

Most students will need a visa to visit India, and more information can be found on the website. Contact the High Commission of India to find out how to apply for a visa. The Square Mile Team will be able to help and advise with obtaining a visa, including visa drop-in sessions to complete the e-visa application

Key Information

  • Departure date: Saturday 22nd February 2020
  • Return date: Saturday 29 February 2020
  • Estimated cost of flights, accommodation and transfers: £1050
  • Students will also be required to pay for: cultural activities, food & drink, vaccinations (£25) and visa (£80)
  • #DMUglobal bursary: £400
  • DMU Square Mile India Bursary: £100
  • Deadline for application: Monday 21 October 2019 9am