One winter, public relations professional and writer Latika Wadhwa decided to do something about helping underprivileged children escape the cold weather. That was the beginning of her social venture Ma Style Care. Within six months, the 24-year-old, with a Masters in English and Communication Studies, had quit her job to devote herself to the initiative, along with running a content writing agency.
The venture is also largely self-funded. Says Latika, “I have my own content agency, which finances the initiative, besides support from family and friends.” The non-profit organisation, now a year old, has a team of 15 members and is backed by over a hundred volunteers. It runs events on social issues every month in Delhi and Meerut. Their current initiative “Decorate A T-shirt for Women’s Freedom” asks women across the country to bring out a t-shirt from their wardrobe and paint, scribble or decorate it with their views on the subject. And, once that’s done, they can share the photograph with an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Decorate A T-shirt”. The activity, which began on August 1, ends on August 14, with the images displayed on their Facebook page—facebook.com/mastylecare—as a form of women’s solidarity to mark Independence Day.
In the winter of 2013, around Christmas, Latika approached friends and family to help her collect clothes, eatables and stationery as donations for underprivileged children roaming the cold streets of Delhi, following it up with a social media campaign. Dominos sponsored a party for the kids, with pizza, cake and cold drinks. Since then, it has been involved with several social initiatives. Its Colorothon Delhi—A Breathe Entertainment concept united people of different communities, using art as a platform. To protest incidents of rape and sexual harassment, it plans a “Chalk Walk” campaign to stop violence against women. After Delhi, the target is Bangalore and Mumbai, to spread awareness on the issue. Another initiative “Pop the Balloon” involved writing down provocative issues on a balloon and then bursting it, symbolically letting go of the stress itself.
There are several special moments that Latika cherishes from her journey. She shares one such memory, “On the first anniversary of MaStyle Care, we celebrated our birthday with a party for 100 orphaned girls and a specially designed Princess-themed cake. Seeing this, one girl remarked, ‘I think my destiny is good that I was able to get such a cake.’ This had a huge impact on me as I realised that a cake is just a normal thing for us, but a luxury for kids who cannot afford it.”
Challenges are a part of life for Latika. “When we started, the basic challenge was to convince people to do something good for society by sparing a small amount of time from their daily routine. However, our efforts to create awareness in the last few months has generated great enthusiasm and support. Through social media, too, we are able to engage a lot of people.”
We wish more power to Latika and her team!
For more, visit http://www.mastylecare.org/current-campaign/