Objective: Enable faster and effective communication between members, promote social action, research and other forms of continuing education for upgrading the knowledge of members and increase awareness about social work.
When an existing social work organisation became obsolete, social workers and academics came together in 2005 to form a society along with IGNOU to protect and promote social work and professional social workers. This initiative came to be called National Association of Professional Social Workers of India (NAPSWI) which upholds the two pillars of social justice and human rights. It has 1,200 life members, 700 student members and 15 institutional members. The current president, Sanjai Bhatt, a professor at Delhi University, says, “We provide governments with manpower to take care of social welfare as many positions are vacant. We equip our students to take care of these needs and help others live socially meaningful and personally productive lives. We have members who teach, research and practice, and also offer their services voluntarily to the society.”
The purpose of NAPSWI is to bring together experts, students and professionals, which also happens to be their motto, ‘Bridging the Gap and Building Bridges’. Prof Bhatt says that social workers need to study a variety of subjects — psychology, sociology, economics, political system and law. They even need to know to file PILs and RTI applications. Therefore, NAPSWI conducts regular workshops across India.
NAPSWI also held for the first time an Indian Social Work Congress this year at New Delhi. It has also proposed to set up a professional council as a regulatory body to standardise education. Many a time, students going abroad or undertaking projects, require backing in the form of certificates, which NAPSWI provides. What’s more, job listings, admissions, etc, are all available to members of NAPSWI on their website.Membership: Any Indian with a bachelor’s/diploma/master’s in social work from a recognised institution is eligible to apply. One can become a life member by paying Rs 1,000. Senior citizens only have to pay Rs 250 and it is only Rs 200 for BSW students (for three years), Rs 300 for MSW students (for two years), and Rs 150 for diploma students.
Benefits: Subsidised registration to Indian Social Work Congress, free subscription to their newsletters, the NAPSWI Google group, nomination by NAPSWI to delegations, expert committees, forums, etc, access to online membership directory, social work network, reduced registration fee to their conferences and workshops and an opportunity to serve on the NAPSWI committee. For details, visit: www.napswionline.org.
Objective: To create awareness of the medium of animation in India, educate the emerging generation and public at large and provide a platform for exchange of creative and technical information.
The Animation Society of India (TASI) was founded in 2001 to enable networking among enthusiasts, professional animators, studios and students. It was registered as a nonprofit organisation. “There is so much talent in this field. Brainstorming, sharing of ideas and guiding professionals in the industry is the only way to bring it out. But this is on a voluntary basis only. We registered it as a trust to form a collective, hold workshops, seminars and promote non-commercial activity pan-India,” says TASI’s founder trustee Ranjit Singh.
While they operate from Mumbai for logistical purposes, they have held workshops all over India. In 2005, they also came up with the idea of hosting a festival — a larger snapshot of monthly sessions, and this came to be called Anifest. The fest got an incredible response and has evolved into a two-three day annual event. The organisation has eight committee members, 100+ lifetime members and between 1,000 and 2,000 floating members.
The society conducts lecture demonstrations, interactive workshops, seminars, awareness programmes throughout the year. On an average, this translates to one event per month.
Membership: Annual charges are Rs 1,000, whereas for students it is Rs 500. Lifetime membership is for Rs 5,000. Those who are animators and students can apply for membership.
Benefits: Since its inception, many distinguished animators from around the world have graced the TASI platform to meet and interact with animation enthusiasts. Through its various events and programmes, the society pro-actively encourages all genres and forms of animation and this has enabled students, professionals and even enthusiasts to share their work with the international animation community. For details, visit: www.tasionline.org.
The Institution of Engineering and Technology is involved in sharing and advancing knowledge in science and technology. Membership is of two types: individual (students, associates, fellows, members and honorary fellows) and library-only membership. Students and apprentices have a membership fee of `1,700 approx. Objective: India produces over 1.5 million engineering students every year. They need to be trained and fashioned as per industry standards. This is where IET steps in. “Our focus is to bring together relevant stakeholders from the industry, academia and government to help solve industry-related issues. As a professional home for life for engineers, IET offers value to its members at every stage of their life — from student to post-retirement,” says Shekhar Sanyal, director of IET in India. “IET helps engineers and organisations to quickly grasp new trends and challenges because they are always ‘in the knowledge network’, meeting peers and co-practitioners. Knowledge and solutions are practically at their fingertips.” IET is licensed to offer globally recognised professional qualifications from the Engineering Council UK for engineering professionals across sectors like energy, transport, information and communication, design and production.
Benefits: Recognition as a professional, industry linkage for student engineers, mentoring services, career guidance, job opportunities and salary prospects, chance to connect with innovative, influential and inspirational people and international recognition.
Courses offered: Chartered Engineers (CEng), Incorporated Engineer (IEng), Engineering Technician (EngTech) and ICT Technician (ICT Tech). Through a structured, well-planned and calendared process, IET ensures that a stream of subject matter experts both from industry and academia visit India to meet members and academic/corporate partners and deliver talks and lectures regularly. Visit www.theiet.org for details.
Headquartered in New Delhi, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) is a statutory body established under the Chartered Accountants Act, 1949, for the regulation of chartered accountants in India. In its 61 years of existence, ICAI has achieved recognition as a premier accounting body globally for its contribution to education, professional development, maintenance of high accounting, auditing and ethical standards. It is now the second largest accounting body in the world. Chartered accountants automatically become members of ICAI.
Currently, more than 11 lakh students are pursuing CA and the total membership of ICAI is above two lakh. A significant number of members occupy eminent positions in government and various organisations. The council comprises 40 members of whom 32 are elected by members and the remaining eight are nominated by the Central Government — they generally represent Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Ministry of Finance, and other stakeholders.
Other important wings of ICAI are Council Affairs, Disciplinary Directorate, Examination Department, Continuing Professional Education, Research, Finance and Accounts, Legal Department, Member and Students Services, International Affairs, Regions and Branches Affairs and Information Technology.
Benefits and activities: Regulates CA profession, sets globally acceptable standards, has disciplinary mechanism in place, pursues activities in education and research, offers continuing professional education, corporate governance, etc.
ICAI also prides itself on being a part of the nation-building process by aiding processes for better governance. At regular intervals, it provides technical advice and necessary inputs on matters of economic relevance and alike to various ministries — Corporate Affairs, Commerce, Finance and HRD. ICAI offers technical advice to various bodies — Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Reserve Bank of India, Securities and Exchange Board of India, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Central Board of Excise and Customs, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority. It also plays a critical role in standard setting, financial reporting, auditing, corporate governance, fiscal policies, and the like. Details at www.icai.org
With the same kind of objectives that govern these popular societies, there are organisations for professionals in other fields. The Aeronautical Society of India, Association of Scientists, Developers and Faculties, Engineering Council of India, Institute of Actuaries of India, Institute of Company Secretaries of India, Institute of Cost Accountants of India, Federation of Indian Photography, Indian Institute of Architects, Indian Institute of Banking and Finance, United Nurses Association, Society of Indian Law Firms, Association of Designers of India, and Computer Society of India are some collective societies in the country.