Implemented by Make-A-Wish India (MAW India) to do in-depth geographical coverage & grant wishes to children in smaller communities
Brief Overview About Diversity of India:
- India’s population of 1.38 billion people consists of the Hindus (82.41%), Muslims (11.6%), Christians (2.32%), Sikhs (1.99%), Buddhists (0.77%) and Jains (0.41%).
- We stand distinctively tall in the global fraternity because of our culture-rich background, euphoria in celebrations, and the warmth in relations.
- India is the largest democracy in the world, with the second-largest population across its 28 different states and 8 union territories.
- India has 22 official languages and hundreds of dialects spoken in the remote areas of India, that bind us to our roots.
- India is the birthplace of various important religions like Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism, and Buddhism. Hence, there is diversity in India.
- Even though there are many religions, each religion’s festival is celebrated and welcomed with open arms. During Diwali or Christmas or Eid, you will see people wishing each other well. Thus you can see unity in diversity. Such is the effect of festivals, that people forget all their personal and religious differences and join in one another’s happiness; hence, there is cultural diversity in India.
- Factors like family structure, values, our movies, weather, sports, literature, music, dance, architecture, transport… all make India a great diverse nation.
- Finally, India is a diverse country because of all the people who live in it.
DEI Activities of MAW India:
- MAW India started its wish granting operations in India in 1995. It has adhered to the DEI principles and today 27 years later, we have presence with 11 offices across India and have fulfilled till date wishes of 77,358 children coming from different communities.
- By 2025, MAW India will complete 30 years of granting wishes in India and has this ambitious goal to grant wish of the 100,000th child then.
- In each of the 11 offices, MAW India values and promotes diversity, equity and inclusion across all areas of our work and workforce. Integrating these values into our actions fosters a progressive and collaborative culture that helps us demonstrate and enhance our impact.
- To promote equity, MAW India hired Thalassemia persons coming from smaller communities, as staff in our offices, for assistance in back office activities.
- MAW India has promoted internal talent and expanded the diversity of leadership within our staff, volunteers and the board.
- MAW India has advocated for, and championed, diversity, equity and inclusion in our work with donors, hospital and charity partners that refer children, supply chain vendors, government offices, civil society and all stakeholders that help us make the magic work to make wishes come true.
Hub and Spoke Model and Its Benefits:
- This model helps MAW India grow its geographical reach without having to open an office in the new location, thus saving on valuable infrastructure costs.
- Helps MAW India to grant more wishes through the diversity, equity and inclusion principles, in the new locations with the Hub & Spoke model.
- MAW India implemented this approach in Baroda (SPOKE) which is a secondary city with population of 19.50 lakh, is located 109 kms from the main city of Ahmedabad (HUB), with a population of 35.21 lakhs, where we have an office.
- MAW India has replicated the Hub & Spoke model from Delhi to reach two spoke locations Noida and Gurgaon, and from Mumbai to cover Navi Mumbai and Thane.
- The staff in the Hub location identify volunteers, wish children referring partner hospitals, like-minded charities like heart foundation / renal foundation / Thalassemia foundation / government centers where HIV affected children come for treatment etc. and invest their efforts to train stakeholders on the wish process.
- In 2021, this effort has helped diversify our operations using the DEI principles and grant wishes of 124 children in Vadodara. In 2022, wishes of 250 children will get granted in Vadodara. Using the DEI principles, we have recruited a staff in Vadodara to strengthen the wish process and reach smaller communities in this spoke location.
- Using the DEI principles, MAW India got the Air Force wives’ association in Vadodara involved. They joined as wish organizing volunteers, and conducted a wish granting event in the Air Force premises, and granted the wish of a child who wanted to sit in an aircraft.
- On lines of the DEI principles, MAW India will soon replicate the Hub and Spoke model in Vellore (SPOKE) which is a secondary city located 138 kms from the main city of Chennai (HUB). In 2022, MAW India will be able to grant wishes of 250 children here. The main hospital partner Christian Medical College (CMC) gets almost 2,000 children every year for cancer treatment. In addition, MAW India has a strong partnership with St. Jude Cancer Center across 7 centers in India, including Vellore, where children from smaller communities and far locations come for medical treatment. Engineering students from Vellore Institute of Engineering are keen to sign up as volunteers.
- MAW India continuously uses the DEI principles to expand within its existing office locations through the cost-effective Hub & Spoke model approach.
Impact of the DEI Activities by MAW India:
By following the diversity, equity and inclusion principles in the community, MAW India has been able to demonstrate efforts put in by its team at the 11 offices and through the Hub and Spoke model, reach more children in smaller communities, grant more wishes year on year, get local language speaking volunteers, supply chain vendors and accomplish the vision outlined by Make-A-Wish to Transform lives of children diagnosed with a critical illness.