Social worker from Chennai gets international recognition

With Women’s Day around the corner, News Today meets up with MCC professor A Sylvia Daisy (41), who has dedicated her life for the uplift of those around her.

Recognising her work spanning over two decades, Commonwealth Organisation for Social Work (COSW), an international body, recently inducted her as one of its board members.

Excerpts from an interaction:

Q: What made you venture into social work?
A: I spent my childhood in a notorious place in Secunderabad. As the place is known for violence staged by local rowdies, my family and I used to be in fear most of the time. That’s when I realised the importance of peace and how it makes a change in people’s lives. Also, when I completed my 12th at Holy Cross School, Chrompet, I began undertaking social work in the neighbourhood, which ultimately became my passion and career as well, after I moved here in the 90s.

Q: Tell us about your non-governmental organisation.
A: During my college days, I joined hands with like-minded people and started an organisation called Andagam which got registered in 2007. Through this, I undertake social activities like teaching in slum communities of Chrompet, rebuilding houses destroyed by natural disasters like Gaja cyclone, medical camps and many more. In the last couple of years, we have organised over 35 medical camps in this neighbourhood alone.

Q: Your achievements so far?
A: In addition to my social work, I have also written and published a book titled: Marriage and Family, in 2014, citing how to live the best family life. I was also appointed the vice president of the Chennai Professional Social Workers’ Association in 2011, which I held till 2017. Also, recognising my work, COSW recently added me as one of its board members.

Q: Have you faced any issues for your work?
A: Most of the resistance has been from the governing bodies, especially the Municipalities. I used to regularly host classes at the Community Hall at Chrompet Gothandam Nagar where officials would always disrupt my work. Some have even asked me to carry out my teaching job alone, and not venture into their areas.

Q: What are your future plans?
A: I will continue to conduct activities to the best of my ability, and our next set of actions will concentrate on uplifting a ‘palwadi’ in Chrompet that strives to offer quality education.

For further details, contact Sylvia at 9840224380.

S Ben Raja