UWBe celebrates International Volunteer Day

By Reena Pillai

On occasion of International Volunteer Day, United Way Bengaluru, BBMP and the Traffic Department coordinated volunteering events over a period of two days i.e, on 4th and 5th December, 2016.

Volunteer strip off illegal posters from the underpass wall

United Way Bengaluru along with BBMP and 100 corporate volunteers from Allegion coordinated a Spotfixing painting activity in association with The Ugly Indian movement, to give a facelift to a major underpass near Dairy circle on 5th December, 2016.

Volunteers scrub the wall clean
Volunteers apply the base coat of paint

On their third anniversary, Allegion proposed to undertake the unique volunteering initiative to instill the spirit of volunteerism and the need to ‘give back to the society’ among their employees.

Volunteers commence work on the other side of the underpass

On the occasion, a representative from Allegion said, “This Volunteering initiative is a celebration of our third anniversary in Bengaluru and we couldn’t have done this on a better day than International Volunteer Day. Our volunteers were extremely happy to participate in this painting activity and they had a wonderful time. We hope to organize more such events in the near future too.”

Volunteers painting the peacock motif on the walls of the underpass

The Spotfixing painting activity is a part of Project UFO (Under Fly Over) – a joint initiative of citizens and BBMP to transform the areas under Flyovers and Underpasses.

Engrossed in the painting activity

It aims to deter people from sticking illegal posters on the wall and ensure that public property is secured from defacement. In an innovative way, this project was undertaken to ensure aesthetic transformation of walls of the underpass.

Commuters appreciating the initiative

The following activities were undertaken: removing posters, cleaning the walls, filling in the pre-sketched BBMP approved peacock motif with colors and paining the sides of the footpath. These activities were undertaken under the guidance of experienced volunteers, who had earlier managed and executed dozens of similar transformation projects in partnership with BBMP, BMRCL and Indian Railways.

Volunteers covering the sides of the footpath with fresh coat of paint

On the occasion, Manish Michael, Executive Director of United Way Bengaluru said, “Prominent places are being defaced by illegal advertisers without any sense of ownership or pride towards their city. Thousands of citizens who pass by everyday are assailed by the visual pollution and ugliness of this public infrastructure. We hope that through this volunteering initiative people feel empowered to come forward and make a positive change. This move will also provide additional assistance to the municipal corporation, whose task it is to remove posters and maintain the cleanliness of the underpass walls and footpaths”.

Team Allegion pose against the backdrop of their Spotfixing masterpiece!

This initiative hopes to create an impact in the community by encouraging many corporations to come forward to undertake such activities, lessen the burden on the BBMP and also improve the self-image and pride of citizens who pass by every day. This will hopefully also help in prevention or control chronic illegal activity that defaces and damages public property.

Awareness program on Road Safety

Student United Way volunteers displaying banners when the signal turned red

In order to sensitize the public on the importance of adhering to traffic rules and its benefits, the student wing of United Way Bengaluru, Student United Way (SUW) in collaboration with Chilume organization organized half a day Road Safety Awareness Program on Sunday, on 4th December at two locations; Marthahalli Traffic Junction at Outer Ring Road and Yamlur Traffic junction.

Volunteers waiting with banners at strategic traffic signal points

Volunteers of SUW organized a public rally displaying placards and repeating slogans, urging people to obey traffic rules. When the traffic signal turned red for 20 to 30 seconds, students came to the center of the road and flashed their placards.

Roses were distributed to people who flouted traffic rules urging them to be responsible citizens

They also distributed roses to those obeying traffic safety regulations like wearing of helmet, pillion rider wearing helmet, strapping of seat belts, using the zebra lines to cross the road and like- wise.

Traffic police felicitated on the occasion

On the spur of the moment, roses were also handed out to those who didn’t wear their helmets, in order to encourage them to follow the rules.
Around five traffic police were felicitated on the occasion and they were honored with shawls and garlands.