Leadership skills workshop inaugurated for students with disabilities and volunteers at Jammu University

Jammu December 26 (KNS): Disability Initiatives, University of Jammu in collaboration with the Office of Programme Coordinator, NSS, JU and ELFA International is organizing a two day workshop for students with disabilities and NSSvolunteers,‘Leadership skills for an inclusive world: Challenges and Prospects’. The inaugural function of the workshop was held today, where Pardeep Dutta, Senior Editor Times Now was the chief guest.
Speaking on the occasion Sh. Dutta mentioned that determination is the key skill that can help us win in all situations. It is very important to lend helping hand to others in order to create an inclusive society. According to him it is the social conditioning that makes us view people in binaries of abnormal and normal. He exhorted the students to realize their inner potential and be makers of their own destiny. He further mentioned that inclusive approach should be based on not charity but rather on compassion. 
Prof. Sarika Manhas, Coordinator Disability Initiatives, JU and convener of the workshop presented the welcome address where shementioned that students with disabilities have potential to be leaders of the world, as they are more compassionate and empathetic. She stressed on the need of harnessing leadership potential of youth including those with disabilities. She further informed that the University of Jammu is committed towards the cause of persons with disabilities and is constantly striving to add value to their lives and experiences. She also hoped that the NSS volunteers will become true leaders by reaching out to those who are marginalized and disadvantaged.
Dr. Hema Gandotra, Programme Coordinator, NSS, JU and co- convener of the workshopdiscussed the objectives of the workshop. She shared that NSS volunteers work on the principle of ‘Not me but you’,  and ‘once a volunteer always a volunteer’ and hence have an exceptional role in building an inclusive social order. She further highlighted that NSS is a just not a name but rather a feeling that runs in the blood of all volunteers. She also urged the volunteers to constantly be ready to be a support mechanism for those with disabilities.
Mehran Khan, Founder and CEO of ELFA International and key resource person for the workshop highlighted the role of motivation, determination and perseverance in empowerment of youth. He shared many strategies for achievement of equality and equity in society. He emphasized that empathy and inclusion are benchmarks of a good leader.
The formal vote of thanks was accorded by Dr. Neelam Choudhary, Faculty DD & OE, JU.
The inaugural session was followed by a technical session, where through games, and activities students learned leadership skills.
More than 50 Students with disabilities belonging to the different teaching departments of the University, and NSS volunteers from main campus and affiliated colleges actively participated in the workshop.
Team of research scholars of Department of Home Science and Sociology -Ms. Vinish Malik, Ms. Meghna Sharma, Ms. Vishawdeepika, Ms. Insha,Mr. Lokesh Kumar, Mr. Shiv Pal, and Ms Manu Saini helped in the smooth conduct of the workshop.(KNS)

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