Ms Roma Mehta, from Living Design, a design house that believes that design and creativity elevates communication. She has created promotional material in print and digital media for nonprofits and foundations in Taiwan, Australia, DRC Congo and India. She manages a design and print business in Taiwan and is now based in Kolkata. Roma also loves art and works on creative art projects with children. Coming from a family where serving the society was an integral part of prescribed duties, volunteering comes naturally to Roma therefore she is an avid volunteer and for many initiatives like Daan Utsav, GYAN etc. Her GYAN workshop on Powering Your Presentation was a roaring success in Kolkata
- Tell us something about your move and interest to the development sector?
My involvement and work in the development sector is not new. It has been an integral part of my life since I was a child. For 35 years, my father managed a free school for street kids, a Narishala as an income generation project for women, and a Mass Feeding of the Poor which still happens every Sunday on Sudder Street. After moving to Taiwan, I have been involved with fund raising, organsing charities and providing print collateral for non-profits from many different sectors of the NGO world. It seemed natural to join Daan Utsav in Kolkata and continue the flow of work related to the development sector. Our first and foremost duty is to serve humanity.
- How did you know about GYAN & what motivated you to volunteer for the initiative?
I learnt of GYAN through Tanveer. He has been attending the Daan Utsav Volunteer meetings at my office and this is how we got to know each other. When Tanveer suggested that I participate in the GYAN initiative, I was more than willing to help NGOs improve their visual communication tools. Visual language is my main line of work and if I can help people that are in the business of uplifting humanity, what better use could there be of my skills?
- How was your experience of taking the GYAN session? Any take ways for you as a volunteer?
The workshop was an excellent experience. It was good to be able to give some much needed pointers on better communication through PowerPoint. My suggestions would include better channels for feedback and follow up. I don’t think that one day is sufficient for a workshop like this if it needs to be effective. Two or three sessions would give participants a chance to put the knowledge they gain into practice; allow the mentor to show them how to improve their existing presentations; allow new presentations to be made in accordance with the basic rules of effective presentations.
- Now working as a professional in this sector do you think the GYAN approach to training is beneficial in the sector?
Yes, I do believe this is a good initiative. However, as mentioned above, some of the topics require more than one day of participation.
- Would you recommend GYAN to volunteers as well as NGO’s? If so Why?
Definitely. I would recommend it to NGOs. Most of them are so busy with the work they are doing and have neither the time nor the resources to develop their communications. These workshops can become a good way to gain bite sized knowledge and skills.