Small Talk With Sanjoy Roy

CHANGE leaders do great things, and often that is all we know about them. Here we want to get a different glimpse of the personalities that constitute the development space. Every month we get one leader to answer our four quirky questions. This week we catch up with SANJOY ROY, founder and trustee of the Salaam Baalak Trust. He is also the director of the Jaipur Literature Festival.

The Salaam Baalak Trust aims to provide a sensitive and caring environment to street and working children and other minors on the margins of society. It seeks to dissolve the barriers that rob children of the opportunity to realise their rights, creating a nurturing environment that can foster normal physical and mental growth of neglected children.

From three staff members and 25 children on a balcony of the Ground Reserve Police at the New Delhi Railway Station more than 28 years ago, the Salaam Baalak Trust has now grown to over 200 staff, providing support services for more than 8,500 children a year in Delhi and the NCR region through 25 centres.

Small Change: Do you believe in the afterlife?

S.R: Yes! Partly due to the philosophy that we are brought up with, mostly due to experiences that I have had with past and after life. At home all four of us tend to see apparitions and other worldly objects who inhabit our environment (read – floating ectoplasm) and occasionally drive us mad!!

Small Change: Name one thing you are really bad at.

S.R: SINGING … would have really loved to sing!

Small Change: You have been forced to eat only four things for the rest of your life. Which four items would you choose?

S.R: Prawn, cheese, bhindi and dark chocolate.

Small Change: Where would you like to go for your next holiday?

S.R: Ummm…Antartica, Peru or Bhutan.

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