Pandemic into an opportunity-The digital Avatar of Jagriti Yatra is creating waves

Jagriti Sewa Sansthan is a nationally renowned charitable organization, with the mission of ‘Udyam se Desh Nirman’ or ‘Building India through Enterprise’. Its flagship program Jagriti Yatra (JY) has taken 500 youth and women every year, over the past 12 years, on a national train journey to explore, understand and learn from ‘Middle India’ - small towns and districts. Jagriti is building Jagriti Enterprise Center–Purvanchal (JECP) in Deoria, UP, a Tier 3 district for enterprise incubation and regional innovation, as the first of four such enterprise centers in the four corners of the country.

Today, when the world deal with the COVID-19 crisis, Jagriti turned it into an opportunity by launching Jagriti Digital Yatra 2020 (JDY 2020) to promote ‘Udyamita’ or ‘Enterprise’ on a very large scale. The Jagriti Digital Yatra is carrying over 700 Digital Yatris on a journey of national exploration through digital means for 15 days from 24th December to 8th January.

At the core of JDY 2020 is the belief that entrepreneurial energy in ‘Middle India’ has to be mobilized for revival and growth. Properly supported, leaders in the middle can create local enterprise and local employment helping revive the country as a national movement.

It is engaging over 1000 Digital Yatris using digital platforms (FB Workspace & Zoom) for group work and experience; bringing enterprise learning through role model visits and digital maps. Yatris interact through live sessions with 12 role models’ at key locations where the Yatra stops and undertook a business plan competition called BGT I Deoria. The Yatra has already seem participation from national speakers like Dr Kiran Bedi, Dr. RA Mashelkar, R. Gopalakrishnan. The Yatra is also hosting panel discussions on 6 key issues relevant for smaller towns and districts–Health, Women empowerments, Digital, Rurbanization, Agriculture, Apparel and Handicrafts, subjects that are the focus of the Jagriti Enterprise Center–Purvanchal (JECP). With 90+ hours of content and engagement with 200+ speakers over 15 days, the Yatra is a boon for its participants. Peer to peer interaction with participants forms the core of the digital learning process, with online learning-by-doing.

Jagriti Digital Yatra 2020 has received immense support from partners such as Schneider Electric Foundation, NSDC, Tata Chemical Rural Division (TCSRD), Amit Chandra Foundation, HSBC, Tata Steel Foundation, Aditya Birla, MulticoreWare and MIT- ID. It past partnerships with Google, Rolls Royce, Coca Cola India and PwC have helped shape it what it is today. Inspiring role models such as Anshu Gupta, the founder of Goonj, Dr. S Arvind, the director of Aravind Eye Care and Bunker Roy, the Founder of Barefoot College continue to inspire the Yatris.

This Digital Mission is one of a kind.