Desi Club: Sharing Desi and South Asian culture

By Andrew Franceski, Staff Reporter

The Desi (pronounced ‘they see’) Club provides a space for students of South Asian origin to build community and educate others on aspects of their culture. They do not limit membership to just those of Desi culture, and encourage all people to participate.

The club meets on Mondays before school in Merri Garnder’s room, and often runs their meetings as a large-group discussion. Centered around culture and learning, members talk about the different ways people celebrate festivals, holidays, and aspects of Desi and South Asian culture.

“I love the sense of community in the club, and the service projects that we undertake which are phenomenal and extremely eye opening,” junior Yasthika Ashokkumar said.

One main goal of the club is to organize different events for different holidays. For Diwali, the club had members come to school in traditional Desi clothes as a way to build community and connect with their fellow Desi students.

“I love learning about how everyone celebrates different events,” said senior and president Sharanya Ravishanker. “Desi students and families all do something slightly different, and gaining a new perspective or learning about a new tradition is a really cool experience.” 

The other main activity of the club has been their service outreach projects. In prior years, they have organized various fundraisers for the Desi community as well as the T/E community as a whole, such as raising money for donations back to India, and fundraising for those in the T/E community affected by the pandemic.

This year, Desi Club is focused on raising money to support education efforts in India. 

“Our club goal for this school year is to raise money that we will then donate to help fund education in India. We are planning various events and fundraisers, and we are hoping to see many Conestoga students at our Cornucopia table if it still happens,” Ravishanker said. 

Students interested in joining Desi Club are welcome and encouraged to stop by an after-school meeting.

“Anyone interested in learning more about Desi or South Asian culture, giving back to the community or having a great discussion can join Desi Club,” Ashokkumar said. “We are always happy to have new members.” 

Andrew Franceski can be reached at [email protected]