Two friends sat over a cup of tea and wondered why it becomes increasingly difficult for some people to make new friends as they grow up. Given how everything has become digital, they also pondered over how it’s ironic that many youngsters prefer socialising via online platforms, while hiding behind a screen. Thus was born Bachelors City, a project to help connect people with others face-to-face in a non-professional setting.
Its founders Lipika Khatter, who specialises in social media marketing and is a recruitment consultant, and Somesh Mukherjee explain about the venture. “Through Bachelors City, we conduct events and activities to enable people to gather and make new friends while having fun. I’m sure many of us like to attend certain parties or events with our close friends, but if one wishes to leave his/her comfort zone and socialise, this is the perfect opportunity,” says Lipika.
Before we proceed, she tells us that they don’t have an office, but work out of anywhere they please! “Somesh is from Delhi but is currently in Bengaluru and I’m in Chandigarh. We don’t have a head office and are a two-man army,” she smiles.
She’s made a rather interesting observation about the circles that (some) people above the age of 25 like to mingle in. She shares, “We’ve discovered that women don’t mind making friends even after graduating from college or at work but men tend to stick to their childhood circles. By attending such events, we’ve noticed that their network expands greatly and they’re happy to take this step.”
Apart from Chennai, the duo has organised a variety of events Pan-India. “Our primary goal is to set up safe environment to help people meet offline. The most popular event is called Chai with Strangers, where one can meet a bunch of new people and have conversation with them over a cup of tea. This creates a positive vibe where everyone gets comfortable enough to share thoughts and ideas,” elucidates Lipika.
The other events include salsa classes, where those interested in learning the dance form, bachelors and spinsters can get to meet like-minded individuals. She says, “We also facilitate tech-based events like workshops for social media marketing, design, soft skills training, personal development and talks about career planning by experts. Our game nights called Scrabble with Strangers, where people can make connections while playing, is another hit.”
When asked what the response from Chennaiites has been so far, she says, “The people here are very keen to meet others and have interesting personalities themselves. They are trustworthy and help create a safe environment for everyone to mingle. The last Chai with Strangers meet was in October and we have a lot of events in the pipeline. Apart from the above mentioned ideas, we’re coming up with new activities too,” she concludes.