Shanggar shares his journey as cofounder of TaleSpace.
My name is Shanggar Ganesh and I'm from Subang Jaya. I enjoy traveling, watching movies and catching Chelsea FC's matches with my mates.
I’m really passionate about the environmental and social sectors areas, and I’m keen on making a difference in it. My dream is to see a more environmentally sustainable world filled with more self-sufficient people.
I was based in Florida, USA between 2011 to 2015 for my degree in Aerospace Engineering, and then in Paris, France for half a year, working with a green energy startup. I received an offer to join a large green energy company in Munich - which I was waiting for an EU working visa for - prior to rejecting it to return home.
Currently I’m active in a programme that I help co-found called TaleSpace. TaleSpace is a sustainability development enabler for underprivileged communities through knowledge sharing, experiential learning and volunteering. It is a space where every person’s story will be molded to be educational and applicable skill to help a specific mission. It's a social enterprise that aims to build a sharing impact to all and cultivate a reach for the rural and underprivileged communities. Basically, we get volunteers to work with us, to share their stories to bring a better impact for others.
I hope that talented Malaysians abroad will return to serve this nation and make it better.
Back during my time working within Malaysia's social sector, I came across two amazing individuals, Irene and Veena, who were bringing about social changes to an urban poor community in Klang. Upon realizing how aligned our visions were, we decided to form TaleSpace to cultivate a community of volunteers from all around the world to be the catalysts in helping our nation's underprivileged communities to be more self-sustainable through knowledge and skills sharing.
At that point, I was exposed to the day-to-day struggles that hit those facing real poverty, and was very inspired to make a difference within any capacity. A lot of us get into these initiatives wanting to save the world, but I think the key is to be prepared to start with just one person.
The tragic irony of the entire project was that, being an organisation that was meant to enable others to be more self-sustainable, we - as the founders - were struggling to sustain ourselves. Fundings weren't coming by easily, and we obviously required a capital to get us started with before achieving sustenance.
There we were confidently pitching about sustainable development for underprivileged communities at Goggle's office, but deep within, so worried about our own financial state. Perhaps that's what drove us - knowing how it feels like being financially unstable.We aim to keep it going to serve a bigger purpose.
TaleSpace has now expanded to Thailand, Czech Republic and Poland, where it's being run by locals who previously volunteered for the missions in Malaysia. Our Co-Founder, Veena, who is now based in Poland, is planning to create presence in more countries with underprivileged communities that would benefit from it.
Joy isn't in finding a much better home; it's in making your home that much better.
In Malaysia, we have all been speaking about positive changes for the longest time. All I could hope for is, just like myself and many around me, that talented Malaysians abroad will return to serve this nation and make it better. Here's an actual advice I passed on to a friend who's moving to another country cause of the great system they have in place: Joy isn't in finding a much better home; it's in making your home that much better.
A big part of the reason why I love my country is the people. What sets us apart from every other nation is the humans inhabiting it. Being so racially diverse and culturally rich, Malaysians are the most accommodating, thoughtful and forgiving people that I've come across within the 3 continents I've lived in so far. This also happens to be one of the biggest reasons I returned to Malaysia after living abroad for 5 years. You may be able to take a Malaysian out of Malaysia, but you simply can't take Malaysia out of a Malaysian. :)