Since the clinic opened in
September 1996, a number of volunteers have contributed their skills and experience in the
areas of allopathy, advertising, publishing, medical research, interpreting, website
building and others. We welcome serious and committed volunteers, with an awareness of,
and sensitivity towards the complex issues of the Bhopal disaster. A working knowledge of
Hindi will make your stay more enjoyable but is not essential.
As valuable as professional experience in a certain field can be, the ability to respect
the collective spirit of working at Sambhavna and to enjoy making a contribution is of
equal importance. Also important is a willingness to pass on your skills as far as
possible so that the clinic benefits in the longer term. We assure you that it is not all
hard work. Past volunteers will tell you that they have really enjoyed working on
socially relevant issues and learning things that school didn't teach. However, we do urge
you to think carefully before considering the voluntary positions outlined below. We can
offer you food, accommodation and a unique working atmosphere but we are unable to cover
any other costs.
Feel free to ask further questions and get more details by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
The Documentation Centre at Sambhavna is a vital resource for anyone wanting to find out
more about the gas leak in Bhopal. It is open to all and holds the most comprehensive
collection of documents related to the disaster anywhere. It is in regular use by clinic
staff, independent researchers, journalists, medical and legal experts, environmental
health workers and students. People are even referred to the library by local Government
The Centre is currently undergoing a major overhaul, as the thousands of documents,
journals, magazines, books and newspaper cuttings are recategorised and classified, not to
mention keeping on top of the increasing numbers of items received everyday. The aim is to
computerise the Documentation Centre, a slow and painstaking process but one that will be
immensely beneficial, making it even more accessible to visitors.
Do you think you could help? We need a methodical person with experience of library
and database administration who can work with the existing librarian as well as
independently. Resources are severely limited as is storage space so you will need to
think creatively and work on your own initiative.
2. Photo librarian
The collection of photographs in the Documentation Centre is large and varied and as yet
has not been sorted, dated or captioned. The proposal is to combine the sorting of these
photographs (which will involve research amongst clinic staff as well as survivors in the
wider community and past visitors) with creating a series of posters (photographs and
English/Hindi text) that tell the story of the disaster and the work of Sambhavna for use
in seminars, workshops and conferences.
We need an organised and visually creative person who can display and document the
photographs as well as building a database of references, sources and dates. Again
resources are severely limited but ideas and input from other clinic staff and visitors
will be abundant!
3. Website researcher/editor/designer
The www.bhopal.org website was until recently
updated by a volunteer in the UK and gives a full background on the medical disaster in
Bhopal. Thanks to an individual donation the site can now be updated from the clinic
itself. There is a great deal of potential for this site to grow and expand, as yet time
has not allowed for this. We hope to develop a regular Sambhavna E-zine as well as
fundraising for specific projects being undertaken by Sambhavna. We also propose to expand
the 'survivor's testimonies' section to highlight the fact that the Bhopal disaster is
ongoing and growing daily.
Technical experience of web-building would be very useful but not as important as
attention to detail and layout (copyeditors and subeditors welcome). Also required is
experience of researching, interviewing and presenting information creatively.
4. Website shop 'Sambhavna Online'
It is proposed that the www.bhopal.org
website includes a shop where locally made arts and crafts can be bought to raise funds
for Sambhavna. Initial research has been carried out and some items are ready to go
online. Further research (identifying sources, costings etc) is needed as well as
marketing and publicising the shop on the web.
We need a person who can combine most, if not all of the above requirements to help us get
started in this venture. The job could be split into two parts: a. research to be carried
out in Bhopal, and b. marketing/publicising (can be done from anywhere).
5. Print editor/layout
The Sambhavna Trust publishes an annual report, periodic newsletters, health information
leaflets, posters, conference proceedings and other items. The list of publications is
growing and consequently help is desperately needed.
We need an experienced editor with experience of layout, design and compiling items for
publication who would be prepared to work with existing volunteers and clinic staff.