Less that a week after the US First Lady Michelle Obama danced to Rang de basanti with children from the not-for-profit, Make A Difference (MAD), the organisation is flooded with people wanting to volunteer and NGOs wanting to tie up with them.
“More than 100 students have called to check when is our next recruitment drive. We had been trying to meet NGO’s for tie-ups since very long but after the interaction with Michelle Obama all appointments became simple,” said Tanmay Arora, founder of the Mumbai chapter of MAD.
The 20-year-old is a final year student of business administration at NMIMS University in Juhu.
“Since we are a student-run organisation no one ever took us seriously. The recognition we got after Michelle Obama will go a long way for our credibility,” added Arora.
The organisation was founded by Jithin Nedumala in 2006 when he was a 19-year-old. Today, MAD has nearly 800 volunteers who teach more than 2,800 children in 10 cities. About 30 students from their five centres in Mumbai meet Michelle Obama on November 6 at the University of Mumbai in Fort.
Even the volunteers from MAD who met Michelle have become popular. Ruchi Amlani and Abhishika Awale, students of Sathaye College met Rahul Gandhi in Delhi on Wednesday. They were part of a contingent of 10 students from Mumbai who met Gandhi.
Their principal selected them because they had met Obama.
“It was an informal meeting that was supposed to be for 20 minutes but ended up lasting for two hours. It is nice that our work is being recognised. But the best recognition of our effort was the smiles on the faces of the children when the first lady danced with them,” said Amlani, a final year BSc student.