The main objectives of National Service Scheme (NSS) are:
i. understand the community in which they work.
ii. Understand themselves in relation to their community.
iii. Identify the needs and problems of the community and involve them in problem-solving.
iv. Develop among themselves a sense of social and civic responsibility.
v. utilize their knowledge in finding practical solutions to individual and community problems.
vi. Develop competence required for group-living and sharing of responsibilities.
vii. Gain skills in mobilising community participation.
viii. Acquire leadership qualities and democratic attitudes.
ix. Develop capacity to meet emergencies and natural disasters and
x. practice national integration and social harmony.
Started initially in 37 universities involving 40,000 volunteers, the scheme has grown over the years and it is implemented today with an involvement of more than 2.6 million volunteers spread over in 200 Universities, Polytechnics and +2 Systems. The efforts of NSS volunteers have been widely acclaimed by the community, universities, colleges and general public as the NSS volunteers have been rendering selfless service to the community.
The Motto of NSS "Not Me But You", reflects the essence of democratic living and upholds the need for self-less service. NSS helps the students develop appreciation to other persons point of view and also show consideration to other living beings. The philosophy of the NSS is well doctrine in this motto, which underlines/on the belief that the welfare .of an individual is ultimately dependent on the welfare of the society on the whole and therefore, the NSS volunteers shall strive for the well-being of the society.
The symbol for the NSS has been based on the giant Rath Wheel of the world famous Konark Sun Temple (The Black Pagoda) situated in Orissa, India. The wheel portrays the cycle of creation, preservation and release and signifies the movement in life across time and space, The symbol thus stands for continuity as well as change and implies the continuous striving of NSS for social change.
The NSS Symbol is embossed on the badge. The eight bars in the wheel represent the 24 hours of a day. The red colour indicates that the volunteer is full of young blood that is lively, active, energetic and full of high spirit. The navy blue colour indicates the cosmos of which the NSS is tiny part, ready to contribute its share for the welfare of the mankind.
The scheme is funded by both Central and State Governments in the ratio of 7:5 to organise Regular Activities (RA) and special Camping Programmes (SCP). An amount of Rs.160/-per volunteer per annum is released towards Regular Activities (RA) and Rs.300/- per volunteer per Special Camping Programme (SCP) which is of 10-days duration to be organised in the adopted villages/communities. In addition, the Government of India provides 100% financial assistance to run NSS Regional Centres, State Liaison Cells and TOCs/TORCs, The Central Government also provides -100% financial assistance for implementation of NSS Programmes in Jammu & Kashmir and Union Territories without Legislatures.