BENGALURU: The ongoing pandemic has seen many youngsters step up and take charge to help those in need. While some decided to make masks for healthcare workers, others made food packets for daily wage earners. In a bid to ease the humanitarian crisis, a group of 16 young professionals from different cities and creative fields, like graphic design, product design, brand strategy, content and copywriting, research, etc got together to conduct online workshops to raise relief funds. Over the course of 12 workshops, on topics like brand strategy, design history, typography and consumer behaviour, they raised `90,000.
“We gave the participants the autonomy to donate to a cause of their choice. To register for the workshop, they had to send us a receipt of the same,” shares Anshuman Gupta, a 24-year-old Mumbai-based product designer. The team provided participants with links to campaigns hosted by online donation platform Donatekart.
“Top causes that people chose to donate towards included animal welfare and necessities for migrant workers,” shares Ishita Seth, a Bengaluru-based research and communication strategist. Seth and Gupta, along with Aditya Damle, Anisa Shaikh, Adarsh Sahgal and Nikhil Pillai together form the collective DAM Design, which spearheaded the ‘Design Cluster’ initiative. “At this time, the COVID situation seemed to be getting worse, and there was a sense of helplessness since we couldn’t contribute to the situation like our frontline workers. The idea to do the same as funding for relief struck a chord with our team,” says Damle.
While response was initially low, the workshops finally garnered more than 150 participants. “Initially, we weren’t sure if we would get many takers when we expanded the scope of our workshops beyond core design topics. However, these fears were soon put to rest,” shares Pillai, who adds that the most popular workshops were the ones on character design, content strategy and rural marketing. Overwhelmed by the response they received, Shaikh says, “It was heartwarming to realise how many people were willing to share and gather knowledge whilst genuinely wanting to make a difference in this time of crisis.”