+Acumen

Why I want to start a MUMBAI+acumen volunteer chapter

I am an engineer by education, and I thought my life was all sorted when I graduated.  I had a job in hand and was excited about finally earning a living and working my way up the professional ladder.

Yet it didn’t feel right. A connection was missing. Born and raised in one of the most backward states in India, Odisha, I was used to seeing a startling level of poverty all around me. Throughout my four years of college I volunteered at several organizations.  There was so much we did, yet I was frustrated by our level of impact. There remains a gnawing desire within me to bring about a considerable, lasting change in the lives of those who suffered day in and day out.

Exploring different models of building successful social enterprise has always intrigued me as a way to create lasting change.  My interest led me to begin working on a book on social entrepreneurs in collaboration with two professors at XLRI, School of Business and Human Resources, Jamshedpur. It was during this wonderfully humbling journey that I came across The Blue Sweater, a book written by Jacqueline Novogratz, the CEO and Founder of Acumen Fund.

I felt connected. Her journey, which started in the world of investment banking and ended up in an impact investing patient capital fund, was inspiring to say the least. I also had the privilege of meeting her at an event in Mumbai, and I read up on the impact Acumen Fund has had in countries across the world, especially in India. Over the course of my reading, I realized that I wanted to get a lot more people in Mumbai involved in Acumen’s work to contribute through a successfully proven model and help build a better society.

I am extremely excited to help start up a MUMBAI+acumen volunteer chapter that will seek to inspire and empower like-minded individuals who are passionate about supporting Acumen Fund’s mission to create a world beyond poverty.  If we are successful, we will join a global movement of 12 other +acumen chapters around the world.

We are hosting a chapter information session at Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Chembur today, the 1st of February, 2012 and at the Acumen Fund office in Bandra (West) on the 6th of February, 2012. The session will answer any questions you may have regarding being part of the chapter. If you are interested, please RSVP to this session on the application forms below.

Our first step is to gauge interest from the Mumbai community, form a chapter leadership team and recruit interested chapter members by Sunday, February 12th.

–  If you are interested in being part of the core leadership team, please fill out the chapter leadership application form here

–  If you are interested in being a part of the chapter, as a member, please fill out the chapter membership application form here

For any further queries, please send an email to mumbaiplusacumen@gmail.com.

If you are interested in starting a +acumen chapter in your city or school, please contact Jo-Ann Tan at jtan@acumenfund.org.

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