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A teen with a cause

'Each of us have been born with a purpose, and I can make a difference too- but not without YOU': This is the slogan of 17-year-old Sanjana Sanghi's website www.innocenttouch.in, which started in June this year.

mumbai Updated: Oct 18, 2010 00:38 IST
Devanshi Shah

'Each of us have been born with a purpose, and I can make a difference too- but not without YOU': This is the slogan of 17-year-old Sanjana Sanghi's website www.innocenttouch.in, which started in June this year.

Sanghi is just another teenager who likes to read, hang out with her friends and spend time on Facebook.

However, this BD Somani School student from Breach Candy is also a responsible teen whose website encourages and connects teenagers with Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).

“When I decided to volunteer at an NGO a few years ago, I did not know where to begin. I finally volunteered at Victoria Memorial School for the Blind and on the first day itself, I realised how fulfilling it was,” said Sanghi.

“It got me thinking about all the other teens, who must also want to volunteer but probably don't know how to go about it. That's when I thought of starting a website.”

After extensive research, Sanghi picked five NGOs, which she thought youngsters would be able to relate to and want to be part of, and tied up with them.

Although barely four months old, Innocent Touch has become popular with south Mumbai students, who now take time out to volunteer.

Already 200 students have done volunteer work through the website.

“After reading about how easy volunteering is on Sanjana's website, I worked at Akansha (NGO) for a month. The experience was satisfying and I look forward to helping out at various NGOs in the future,” said 17-year-old Vedant Munshi, who is only one of the many teenagers who has begun volunteer work because of the website.

NGOs, too, are happy about the response the website is generating. “The website is a good initiative especially since she is so young. It's quite commendable and because of it we have been getting more volunteers,” said Kiran Madan, founder of Sanskar India Foundation, a NGO that works on civic and social awareness in schools.

The website is simple and informative. It lists three simple steps for those who want to volunteer and gives information about the five NGOs.

The website also has a Facebook page with 197 members.

The five NGOs listed on her website site are Meljol, Safe Kids, Victoria Memorial School for Blind, Toy Bank and Sanskar India Foundation.

The website has gone beyond south Mumbai and Aflataun, an international NGO, invited Sanghi for a two-week conference on spreading awareness on the importance of managing finances in Amsterdam a few months ago.

“My dream continues to remain the same since the time I started the website till today — to encourage others to make a difference in someone's life,” said Sanghi with a smile.