Mangaluru: You Have to be the Voice of the Voiceless – Prof Rita Noronha during Spandana Symposium

Mangaluru: A Two-day national-level “Spandana 2016”, on the theme of ‘Voices of the Vulnerable’ was held at the College auditorium, School of Social Work Roshni Nilaya here on February 11.

The programme began with an invocation. Dean, MSW department Prof Rameela Shekhar welcomed the gathering. The programme was inaugurated by Prof Rita Noronha by lighting the traditional lamp along with other dignitaries.

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Voices of the vulnerable, is a significant subject a most opt one for Spandana, an event organized to expose students of Master of social work to the current realities of social exclusion and voices of resistance against such social exclusion.

Being a student of relations of power the term vulnerable often used with reference to the marginalized socially excluded people is disturbing.

The dictionary meaning of the term vulnerable – powerless, helpless, weak, easily hurt or wounded, open to attack or unprotected and defenceless. She stressed that we are not weak but the dominant classhave made us to feel and think that we are weak. We have equal rightsto lead our life but at the same time we have to understand our capacity and make ourselves strong to raise our voices. Social workers while helping anyone should be the voice of the voiceless, powerless and weaker section.

Speaking on human development Prof Rita said, “Human development shares a common vision with human rights. The goal is human freedom. Therefore, human development is interconnected with human rights and human freedom. People must be free to exercise their choices and to articipate in decision-making that affects their lives.

Prof Rita Noronha presented a PPT on Voices of the Vulnerable. Dr Sophia N Fernandes delivered the presidential address. Student Co-ordinator Melora Pais delivered the vote of thanks. Co-chairperson Dr Philomena D’Souza and others were also present.


  1. Prof. Rita Noronha, well said. But in the world the voice of the voiceless is suppressed by power, religion. The false is repeatedly proved truth by the so called leaders where the people blindly (or pretend to be blind) follow and support. People like Prof. Rita Noronha need to come together and unitedly work for justice than working individually.

  2. Prof. Rita Noronha has been the ‘voice of the voiceless’ all her life and I salute her for her dedication and commitment to the cause.Human freedom is a God -given right which we deny or try to control in the people we deal with on an everyday basis. Everytime we try to dominate or even ignore another we are denying him/her a voice. If we can do this to the people we love and live or work with then how much more do we do it to the weak, marginalised and the poor. I applaud Spandana’s efforts to bring this issue to the front burner.Let us build a better world with our individual efforts.

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