On July 9th, I got to attend a special programme where the cohort of 16 girls from the EmpowHER shared their accounts and experiences of the day they spent on opportunity optimization.
In the session, the ladies shared their first-hand experiences of selling goods for fundraising that day itself.
Faced with many rejections, they shared their experiences of convincing the people to buy the products with them viz. bottled water, henna/mehndi arts, roses, stationery materials among others. â€œOnly one fifth of the people we approached offered to listen to us,â€ they shared their experiences from the day. â€œAnd, only one fifth of those who listened to us, offered to buy goods from us,â€ they added.
As the donation culture in Nepal is not that long and people donâ€™t get the point of fundraising, one needs to spend a good time on convincing people about their ideas.
They also shared their ideas on strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in the process of carrying out such works.
â€œThe natural tendency of the people, as we experienced is that they simply try to ignore those providing such services, and unwilling to listen to,â€ shared one group.
Another group shared that the effect of peers is also significant in such situations. â€œIn our experiences, even if people offered to listen to us, their friends pulled them away, despairing us furtherâ€ she shared.
The session also discussed about the common perception of people in our society.
â€œEarlier they had underestimated the power of kids. But, that day, they felt that the children have the control over their parents. We were surprised to see them convincing their parents to buy stuffs for them,â€ said another member.
That day, they got to learn about the people, and the beauty of fund-raising. Also, seeing beyond the shadows and knowing the reality of our society, they felt more determined to work on changing the status quo.
As they shared their experiences of that day, Amuda Mishra, initiator of the programme made them aware that they shouldnâ€™t be judging people on the basis of whether they buy their services or not as people have options to buy or not to buy their products and services. â€œPeople are happy when you give them with an option. You shouldnâ€™t force them. Itâ€™s not us who have the decision, but the buyers themselves,â€ she further said.
As the cohort shared the accounts of the day, they also mentioned that marketing is a skill, and everyone should possess it.
Finally, at the end, a winner was announced, calculating the total amount earned and profits made through the sales.
In the sidelines of the session, another presentation happened. On the session, Ashras, one of the members of the cohort, gave a lively presentation on the climate change and the science behind it. She also clearly presented about the details of Global Warming and the impact of brought about by it on biodiversity and climate change. In the session, she also talked about the impacts of climate change.
Making the participants aware on the topic, she requested the participants to be conscious about this burning issue and act on this. â€œEspecially for women, this issue is of higher importance since they are more prone to the impacts of climate change. For this, finding an eco-friendly solution is a must to mitigate the risks of climate change,â€ she gave a message through her presentation.
The programme was organized as part of the 14-weeks long training session of EmpowHER and was sixth in the series. Started in the year 2015 with a belief that empowered women will empower society as a whole, the programme provides a platform for women to exude their ideas, exercise leadership, and contribute as an effective member to the community. EmpowHER seeks to ensure that the aspiring women leaders will be exposed to innovative learning through various trainings in leadership, networking, mentorship, and designing and implementing projects that help other marginalized women ultimately create a society where all the women are empowered.
Photos Courtesy: Ujyalo Foundation
By Basanta Kumar Dhakal