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RuBaRu: Khud se Khud Tak Ka Safar

Updated: Feb 21, 2020

I came to Medha as part of my Buddha fellowship programme journey to know and explore the skilling vertical in the development sector. Medha, a non-profit based out of Lucknow, improves employment outcomes for youth providing 21st-century skills training, career counselling and workplace exposure, and on-going job placement and alumni support to students at their existing educational institution. Since 2011, Medha has worked with over 15,000 youth across 100 educational institutions, placed them into internships and full-time jobs with 1,000 leading employers, and built partnerships with various departments with the state governments of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana, and Uttarakhand. As a part of their alumni (Medhavi) support programme they have designed RuBaRuwhich is a three-day travel programme. RuBaRu aims to better prepare youth by creating an opportunity for alumni to step out of their hometowns and comfort zones to explore their aspirations and foster friendships amongst themselves. A cohort of 28-30 Medhavis (Medha’s Alumni) visit a new city and explore themselves in new surroundings.

"Familiarizing you with your hidden "self", identifying your true "medha" and making an unrivaled version of yourself, that is RuBaRu for you" - Byomkesh Mishra, alumnus of IRMA, Co-Founder of Medha.

Medha and ISEED joined hands to curate a 3-day long program that covered the significant elements of entrepreneurship and sowed seeds of entrepreneurship on our participants.

RuBaRu Season 8, a learning journey to #FindYourEntrepreneur.
28 locations. 28 young dreams. 28 business ideas

The selection process for this season differed from the other seasons of RuBaRu. The students had to send in a modified Business Model Canvas, which had their ideas summarised; the what, the how and the why of their business idea. After a 30-hour train ride from Lucknow to Anand, the participants quickly settled down in the lush green campus of IRMA adding colour with their green Rubaru shirts.

”The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”

Professor Shambu Prasad, ISEED Chair, and IRMA faculty welcomed our students quoting the great George Bernard Shaw.

So, be unreasonable!”, he said.

The verdant environment of IRMA seemed ideal for deep self-reflection, enabling the participants to get Rubaru with themselves. The introductory sessions were engaging and helped the group to understand their expectations and aspirations better.

The first day gave students a broader picture about Entrepreneurship ecosystem and various facets of starting a business, like leadership, team building, basic financial management and marketing. The second day started with an on-campus early morning photography competition capturing the diverse flora and fauna of the IRMA campus. Later in the day, the students ventured out for field visits to Amul and to a village called Jhalora. At Amul plant, students got to know more about the utterly butterly delicious story of Amul. Students were exposed to the revolutionary journey of the Amul brand, which led them to imagine how cooperative spirit could be taken up from conception to inception, and be developed into one of the largest global brands of all time!

Being in IRMA was phenomenal experience for me.It looked like a dream and as co-participants RubaRu gave me a family to grip”..” - Darshana, RubaRu 8 participant.

After that, the participants met with a progressive farmer and entrepreneurs from the region, Jayesh Patel, who owns a dairy and has made waste management a part of his enterprise. He left everyone in awe when he spoke of his model and plan of mentoring dairy farmers in the area.

The participants were also part of interesting interaction with the students of PRMX batch, Executive Post Graduate Diploma in Management (Rural) of IRMA, who also happened to be involved with “Sahaj”, a milk producer company based out of Agra.

“We generally observe the profit aspect of business however there I figured out the social change which businesses could bring..” - Ayush, RubaRu 8 participant

And then came ‘Life Maps,’ an activity that all ex-RuBaRu participants say, “hits home.” The participants spoke of their struggles, how despite so many factors bringing them down, they’ve marched on, fought their inner demons and the ones residing in the outer world too. There is a special kind of beauty in the way people bond over conversations about what keeps them up at night and what motivates them to keep going on during the day. Life Map is about sharing a part of ourselves with everyone in the room. The day ended with a cultural night where students danced and had fun.

Third day was all about pitching your idea in 90 seconds. Students prepared for it overnight and the nervousness combined with excitement could be seen since the morning. One of the participants, Neeraj’s, pitch for his idea of cultivating oyster mushrooms stood out!

Sonu, 17, one of our participants from Patna, wants to create a mobile application for motor mechanics. Sonu’s commute from home usually never goes beyond his ITI college. This was the first time he pushed his boundaries, travelled to a new city, a new state and his excitement, dedication and punctuality stayed consistent throughout the trip. He quotes

“I was venturing out of my city for the first time and was pleased with acquiring my own tickets for this travel".

RubaRu season 8 was all about building bridges between ideas and success. Here’s too many more!

These four days which Medhavis went through with one another had all together advanced themselves to the next level . To observe the sort of bond they had the option to create in spite of the reality they didn't have any acquaintance with one another before was truly inspiring. RuBaRu not just causes Medhavis to shape a solid friend system to examine their school/college/professional life yet in addition frames a family past theirs and help them to talk about the issues which they don't want to examine with their families. It effectively makes a protected space of trust where Medhavis feel to share their issues without having the dread of being judged. This encourages their personal as well as professional development. This journey was a great learning journey for me.

Last however not the least I would like to thank Alisha ( Marketing Team Medha), and Bhavesh ( Team ISEED ) for helping me out in putting this blog together.

This blog is written by Preeti Singh, Development Entrepreneur in Residence at Medha ( Buddha Fellowship Program). After graduating from IIT Kharagpur ( 2013), she joined as an Oil Field Engineer at Schlumberger Asia Pvt. Limited and worked there for 2 years. But the spark to become a development entrepreneur was always there in her, hence she joined Buddha fellowship. As a part of this fellowship program, she was placed at Medha where she not only got exposed to the skilling sector but also got to develop and lead a program helping freelancers in Tier 2 and Tier 3 city of India.

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