In Conversation with Raunak Singh, Illuminating Lives Through SikhAid

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In the realm of modern selflessness, Raunak Singh stands out as a true humanitarian, dedicated to making a positive impact on society through his organization, Sikh Aid. From a young age, Raunak was captivated by the idea of helping those in need and serving society at large. Today, his small initiative has blossomed into a national organization, touching lives across different cities in India.

 

Q: Can you start by telling us a bit about yourself and your background?

A: Certainly. I am Raunak Singh, a 27-year-old individual originally from Cuttack, Odisha. Following the completion of my post-graduation at Utkal University, I made a transition from a business-oriented path. The impetus to establish Sikh Aid, an NGO deeply rooted in the Sikh principles of “Naam Japo, Kirat Karo, Vandh Chakho,” emerged during the challenging period of the COVID-19 pandemic. This desire to make a meaningful societal contribution culminated in the inception of Sikh Aid.

 

Q: What challenges have you encountered in your journey with Sikh Aid, and how have you overcome them?

A: Our journey with Sikh Aid has been marked by several challenges, particularly in the face of natural disasters such as the Balasore Train Tragedy, Cyclone Titli, Cyclone Fani, and the global COVID-19 pandemic. Despite these adversities, my team and I remained steadfast in our commitment to providing essential support. One notable challenge was dispelling the misconception that the youth’s role is limited to fashion and superficial social engagement. We aimed to break this stigma, emphasizing the depth of dedication and purpose that the youth can bring to meaningful endeavours. It’s been encouraging to witness the dedication of our predominantly young volunteers, challenging stereotypes and contributing significantly to our mission.

 

Q: What personally motivates you to continue your work with Sikh Aid, especially during challenging times like the COVID-19 pandemic?

A: My ongoing commitment to Sikh Aid is deeply rooted in the teachings of Sikh Gurus, providing a moral compass for my actions. Actively engaging in aiding seniors, constructing shelters for the homeless, and distributing ration kits to the underprivileged align with these guiding principles. The critical period of the pandemic prompted us to provide essential relief to migrant workers and supply oxygen to hospitals. Beyond the tangible impact, the blessings received from those we assist serve as a profound motivator. Contributing, even in modest ways, to alleviate someone’s pain is a significant aspect that fuels our dedication. Through interactions with individuals, we gain firsthand insights into the prevailing pain and suffering in the world, further reinforcing our resolve to make a positive impact.

 

 

Q: It’s impressive that celebrities have recognized and supported SikhAid’s work. Can you tell us about some of the celebrities who have been involved and the nature of their support? How have these celebrity endorsements and contributions helped further SikhAid’s mission?

A: The support from celebrities has indeed been remarkable, playing a crucial role in raising awareness and securing valuable resources for SikhAid’s humanitarian efforts. While we initially embarked on our journey without celebrity backing, notable personalities have since stepped forward. During a train accident, Prakruti Mishra provided her assistance, and Nimrit Kaur contributed through the provision of sanitary pads. Renowned figures such as Rannvijay and the cricketer Arshdeep have also extended their support. This collaboration with celebrities has not only enhanced our reach but has also significantly expanded our audience, amplifying the impact of SikhAid’s mission.

 

Q: What are SikhAid’s future plans and goals for continued growth and impact?

A: In charting the course ahead, SikhAid is committed to substantial growth, with plans to establish chapters in strategic locations including Pune, Odisha, Kolkata, Mumbai, Punjab, and Delhi. Our overarching goal is to perpetuate a positive impact by extending our reach to even more individuals in need.

 

Looking forward, we aspire to address critical healthcare gaps by initiating a kidney dialysis hospital and providing free services for all. This envisioned facility aims to serve areas currently devoid of medical facilities and to further extend our impact, we are exploring the concept of ‘Dialysis on Wheels.’ These initiatives align with our ongoing dedication to enhancing healthcare accessibility and making a lasting contribution to communities in need.

 

 

 

Q: What advice would you give to young individuals who want to make a positive impact on society through their own initiatives?

A: I would encourage young individuals to wholeheartedly embrace the ethos of selfless service. Initiatives, regardless of their scale, fueled by genuine passion and unwavering dedication, possess the potential to evolve into catalysts for positive change. Each concerted effort, irrespective of its size, contributes meaningfully to the collective endeavour of making the world a better place.

In navigating this path, I advocate for the active promotion of positivity and the intentional spread of happiness. Recognizing the prevalence of negativity both online and offline, I urge aspiring changemakers to adopt an approach that focuses on alleviating negativity rather than perpetuating it. By fostering a culture of optimism and compassion, young individuals can play a pivotal role in shaping a more positive and harmonious world.

 

In a world often characterized by self-centeredness, Raunak Singh and Sikh Aid serve as a shining example of compassion, demonstrating that collective efforts, driven by a sense of humanity, can truly make the world a better place.

 

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