ISD quarterly update Jan-April 2023
“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”- Desmond Tutu Dear friends, The last three months have been one where we found joy in welcoming some new people in this journey of re-imagining politics in India. It was also a quarter where we collectively reflected on our inability to bring 50% women into our programs, which is a major aspect of re-imagination. This is our fourth quarterly update for Jan-April 2023 with you. We look forward to your thoughts, questions, and feedback. If you missed our 2022 annual update, you can see it here bit.ly/isd2022annualupdate
Highlights of the quarter:
The Good Politician Program, 2023: One of the key highlights of this quarter was forming the second cohort of The Good Politician Program. The selection process for this iteration began in December and went on till February. We held boot camps in Delhi and Bangalore in the month of January and an online one in February. We have 25 participants who are part of the cohort who come from 12 states and represent 7 political parties. We held the first Residential of the cohort from 17 March to 1 April in Delhi and Varanasi. A key highlight for this cohort was the Parliament Visit during the Budget Session. During the residential, the participants interacted with 11 political speakers across 8 parties and learnt about constituency building, adaptive leadership, sarvodaya, all while working on themselves and having fun as a community. The cohort is now interacting weekly (every Wednesday and the last Sunday of each month) through online Zoom sessions.
New team members: Our team is growing! 3 new members joined the team in January, bringing with them new energy, hope, and perspective. Jatan is our Outreach Manager, Sameer has joined the Program Team as a Senior Associate and Priyanka is our Finance and Admin Associate. We are now a strong team of 10 people
Capacity Building Workshops: As part of our efforts to nurture and create a space to nurture the heads, hearts, and hands of value-based political youth we started an initiative of Capacity Building Workshop. The idea behind these workshops is to support grassroots leaders to rise up and build their own leadership and political skills to serve people in their constituencies. So far, we have conducted one such workshop in February with the team of our Delhi Alumni, Madhuri Varshney.
Alumni Advisory Board meeting: In February, we held a two-day in-person meeting with the Alumni Advisory Board in Orchha, Madhya Pradesh. Currently, there are five members who are part of this Board and represent the three different programs of ISD. The intention behind the meeting was to sharpen the vision of the Board and come up with a One Year Action Plan to strengthen the sense of collective amongst the alumni of ISD.
Planning the year ahead: The team held a two-day team step back to plan the next year’s action points from 20 April to 21 April and reflect on the year that went by.
Capacity Building Workshop in Meerut: On April 15–16, we conducted a capacity building workshop with our Sarvodaya Champion, Manisha Ahlawat’s team in Meerut.
Alumni in Focus :
We feel incredible pride in sharing that Sameer Asad, an alumnus of our The Good Politician program has been appointed as the district president for Bangalore Rural by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Rohit Jagtap, one of our alumni from Democracy Express 2022 has received the prestigious C Subramaniam Award For Community Leaders. This award is presented by the National Foundation for India.
Lots to look forward to!
She Represents (SR), 2023: On March 10, we launched the application for the fourth cohort of the She Represents program. It is a 7-day leadership program exclusively designed for 40 Local elected women representatives selected from across India. This is a hybrid program- 5 days in Delhi and 2 days online. Help us find the next cohort of She Represents! If you know anyone in your circle, who is an elected representative and/or future politician, actively working towards the commitment of principled politics, please share the application link with them and encourage them to apply! The final deadline is April 29, 2023. More details about the program can be found here.
Team on the ground: From May 7 to May 14, the entire team will be visiting some of our current TGP Participants as well as alumni to shadow their work, observe and understand their work better. This time, we will be visiting participants and alumni from Maharashtra, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan.
Penn Collective in Tamil Nadu: At ISD, we want to see our work expand through our alumni. To this end, we are very excited to share with all of you that two of our alumni, Ashweetha and Poorani will be conducting a 3-day political workshop and training session with the Elected Representatives of Tamil Nadu in Chennai in the month of May. The sessions will be done in Tamil and ISD will be the knowledge and implementation partner.
As we move forward in this journey of supporting principled political leaders and building more of such spaces for interaction, it is vital that every now and then we pause and reflect on how we want to walk this journey. We look forward to your questions, thoughts, ideas, and wishes!
For those, who may be new to Indian School of Democracy: Indian School of Democracy is a non-partisan organization that nurtures principled public leaders. We conduct short-term and long-term programs for aspiring, grassroots political leaders. Follow us on our social media to know more and stay updated on future programs and events.