This Delhi couple is setting an example by using their sagan money to invest in impactful & creative ideas.
A wedding is arguably an extremely important and special occasion in one’s life and it’s quite natural for couples to try to make the day memorable.
Sahil Aggarwal and Soumya Garg, too, wanted to make this occasion memorable in their own way.
The couple got married in February this year, and despite trying to convince friends and relatives to not give any money for sagan (money given as a blessing to the couple), ended up getting over Rs 10 lakh. After much contemplation on how this money could be utilised for a greater good, the couple decided to set up a fund to help people realise their impactful and creative ideas.
“We received generous blessings on our wedding. For us, the love and wishes of our friends and family are enough. Therefore, we have decided to use the sagan money to invest in impactful ideas by creating a social and creative impact fund. We are planning to investaround Rs 1 to 2 lakh in 5 to 10 ideas. This will be in the form of grants, equity, or pay-it-forward loans,” says Soumya.
The couple has created a website inviting ideas from people.
“It is kind of a competition where applicants have to fill a form first and then a few shortlisted candidates will have to appear for an interview,” says Sahil.
Since their website has gone live, the couple has received a great response. While one person wants to install R.O. purifiers in government schools for students, another has launched an online portal to address psychological problems. One young girl wishes to make eco-friendly, organic and biodegradable wedding essentials; another startup wants to extend capital and tech solutions to farmers. The couple is really happy with the kind of ideas in the applications and admit that it’s really difficult to pick few.
To make things easier and set a clear goal, Sahil and Soumya have created a four-point checklist. They will evaluate the idea based on how well it matches with the given priorities: Whether it advances a social cause, if it promotes local economy/culture or solves an issue on local level, if it’s a creative idea finding it difficult to raise funds like a documentary project and whether it’s financially sustainable.
Soumya and Sahil, both public policy enthusiasts, explorers, and dreamers, met over seven months ago during work in Delhi.
Sahil is an IIT-Delhi alumnus and is the co-founder of Vision India Foundation. Soumya is currently developing a card game on politics. When the two fell in love and decided to get married, they decided to make their wedding special and memorable. Even their family is supporting them wholeheartedly in their initiative. The two are eager to welcome more ideas and start the good work of supporting some impact-making, socially relevant and viable ideas.
“This is just the beginning. We have only decided to set up the fund and it feels so great already. It feels like finally we’ll be able to make some difference. I cannot wait for what is to come next. I am sure being actually involved with people doing some good work and supporting them will feel a thousand times better than what I am feeling right now,” says Soumya, smiling.
To know more about Soumya and Sahil’s Sagan Initiatives, visit their website here.