About a year ago, my best friend’s sister (who is now my Co-Founder) casually mentioned the idea of ConnectFor to me. She off-handedly asked me if I would be interested in helping her start one of India’s first volunteering platforms. I was fascinated by the simple idea. At the time, I was working a 14-hours/day management-consulting job, where I spent most of my day behind a computer making good old power point presentations. (Granted, I had no idea how useful these presentation skills would prove to be, even in my current profession!)
I think I was so drawn to the idea of a start-up, the social sector and just about creating a service that was one-of-a-kind from scratch that within a month, I was completely on board with ConnectFor. It was mid-September 2015; my first day on the new job. We started out with nothing but a white board, a few marker pens and a whole lot of ideas!
In about a few weeks we had a basic MVP (minimum viable product) and had started matching people from our networks to organisations (NGOs). Once we saw the value in our work and validated our hypothesis, we started building out our tech piece. We officially launched our website on December 5th 2015 (International Volunteers’ Day).
There has been no looking back since — ConnectFor has engaged in matching more than 500 volunteers to our network of 75+ NGOs. We have organized and engaged in 4 CFCommunity Events across our different cause areas and helped NGOs save over Rs.3,00,000 by matching the right volunteers to them! All leading to #WinWinforaCause!
Over the course of my one-year with ConnectFor I have experienced so much — from the good old NGO visits to the stress of using financial models. I feel ConnectFor has a long way to go and we have just created a fraction of the impact that we can in the development sector. One year later, we continue to make our mark. We went from having a white board, a few marker pens and a whole lot of ideas, to cultivating a small, passionate team, putting in endless hours of hard work and creating our niche within the social sector.
Maniti Modi is one of the co-founders of ConnectFor, who took a huge leap of faith and switched professions to actualize this dream.
To learn more about how to volunteer through ConnectFor, check out the website, www.connectfor.org!