Stories Worth Sharing, a new concept, tries to revive conversations, and aims at diverting attention of youngsters from the internet.
The ‘Instagram generation’ as they are called, youngsters are more enticed by the social media and wish to constantly get updates on ‘what’s trending’. But in this hullabaloo of being hooked on to their mobile screens, they are losing out on real conversations with people. A group of friends sitting together in a restaurant is rarely seen indulging in a chit-chat now; most are busy clicking pictures for the social media.
To revive the way humans communicate in the age of internet, Mohit Munjal and Himanshu Poswal have introduced a platform called ‘Stories worth sharing’, to share personal stories and interact with like-minded people.
As a part of this initiative, people share the stories from around the globe for a limited audience on a Facebook page. Over time, the need to expand offline was realised in order to build a community. Gargi Dharmadhikari from Pune, who is a part of the organising committee, talks about the concept and how they are trying to bring about a change in the society.
“It was started by two Delhi youngsters who created an online community where they shared informative articles for the young guns to read. But eventually they realised that we need to move away from the internet and bring these people together in person. The first meet was organised in Delhi, then Bengaluru, Chennai, Jaipur and many such places.”
Dharmadhikari says that all these stories are worth cherishing. The idea is to give a platform to people who want to be heard. Stories are beautiful and there is nothing like sharing yours in front of a sensible audience. They do not expect the attendees to share the stories which have changed the world but the ones which may have changed (their) world.
She further talks about the response she has received from all the attendees and how people have opened up about the most life altering events of their lives, “In Bengaluru, a girl shared her story about being sexually harassed as a child while in Delhi someone opened up about a suicide attempt and how this space has given them a new ray of hope.
We also organise Facebook Live for inspiring people who can’t be a part of these meet-ups. We want to bring it to the TedX level but our intention is to simply bring people together.”
The group has also added a unique element of giving postcards to their guests. When someone registers, the person is asked for a single word that describes him/her the best. Using this word in a quote written over the postcard, it is then presented to the guest before leaving the event.
Dharmadhikari says, “The idea is to make everyone feel special. We don’t treat people as participants but as people who have stories that have made them. We want everyone to come and share their emotions and feelings. The motto is — while helping others by sharing your story, you help yourself too.”
But even the most noble project sometimes faces challenges like booking cafes or spaces to organise the meet-ups. She says, “We don’t charge anything from people who wish to be a part of the event which is why sometimes it is a little difficult to book cafes. But so far, people have been really supportive. After the Chennai meet-up, we got a call from someone in Puducherry who told us that he loved the concept and wanted us to organise the same in his city. It is really surprising and exciting that people wish to be a part of a project like ours.”
As for registration, people can go on to Stories Worth Sharing on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to find where the next meet is happening and fill a registration form free of cost.