Thursday, October 15, 2015

The journey thus far - Dhruv speaks

Dhruv Tejaswi

Dhruv is a law graduate from the University of Delhi and is currently working with International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF South Asia Region), Delhi, mainly dealing with governance restructuring of NGOs in nine South Asian countries. While not at work, he enjoys reading, poetry, singing and is obsessive about news feeds. He believes empathy can make the world a better place to live and should be the first step towards any change.

Dhruv is among the 20 fellows selected for the Pratiti journey in Delhi.
Read what he has to say about his experiences so far:

"What started out of curiosity to read and apply for Pratiti Fellowship, the journey so far has been a roller coaster ride. But a ride that is worth taking. The only reason I applied for the fellowship is because the questions asked in the application did not harp on the standard questions that are usually asked in the fellowship applications. They rather made me think and answer honestly about myself. 

The workshops that ensued in the fellowship made me stop for a moment and think about myself. I realised that over the years of the rat race, how less had I thought and asked questions about myself. The ‘stretching sessions’ as they are called at the fellowship, made me ask the basic existential questions about life and the purpose of my life itself. It gave me a sense of awareness and did prod my inner critic to ask uncomfortable questions about myself. But at the end of it, when I look back, they helped me immensely. They helped me to envision the future with clarity and at the same time made me realise that one cannot get answers to everything and it is perfectly fine to have open ends. 

A diverse and stellar set of individuals that I encountered along the path of the fellowship has given me strength and has made me more empathetic. It has put in touch with some of the most wonderful individuals and experiences I would cherish for the lifetime. From our mood swings to working late in the night on the project, the fellowship always pushed me to give anything but my best. 

The project I am currently working in creating a safe university space for LGBTIAQ students has made me realise that dreaming of making a difference isn’t a cliché after all. Every day, as I come back from work and automatically start thinking of the project, I realise how passionately I am involved in something after a very long time. When a 17-year old young girl calls me up in the middle of the night and discusses how she would like to come to the Queer Campus meetings but is apprehensive and nervous, I put the phone down after an hour-long conversation with a great sense of satisfaction that I could make a difference in my own small way. 

As the fellowship is nearing an end, I also realise that this is just the beginning of a long journey ahead and this journey continues. As clichéd as it might sound, I would like to quote one of my favourite poets Robert Frost – 

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I — 
I took the one less travelled by, 
And that has made all the difference.”"

Follow the Pratiti blog for more beautiful updates from the fellows as they narrate their journeys of growth and transformation into gender leaders over the next 2 months...

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