Ringing in change via youth leaders

Socially conscious

Ringing in change via youth leaders

In a country which has a whopping 60 per cent of youth population, any social change demands their intervention. But their voices often get diluted in the absence of a unified bond, leading to lesser impact. It is to unite these young voices that Commutiny - the Youth Collective (CYC) has taken the initiative to instrumentalise the youth.

Founded five years back, CYC works to fulfill the needs and aspirations of youngsters who want to bring about social change. This is done through different progra­m­mes such as – Changelooms Leadership and Learning Journey and Must Bol campaign, to name some.

“Gender-related issues disturb me a lot,” shares Aas­h­i­ma Sharma, a II year English Hons student of IP College For Women. One day she heard about the Must Bol campa­i­gn and decided to join the cause.

“Subversion of women in the name of patriarchy is something that I felt was wrong. I didn’t want to take things the way society puts them forth for us but had no means to raise my voice against it. When I saw the way CYC works, I got inspired. Instead of preaching, they circulate the message through exercises like exhibitions or movie screenings after which people are asked to reflect and take a stand on the issue,” she adds.

Nobody is shunned and no decision is proclaimed right or wrong. This approach attracts youngsters towards CYC campaigns. Abhimanyu Jain, a student of B.Com at Kirori Mal College, says, “The events are inclusive and invite ideas from everybody. Regular workshops are held to ca­t­er to issues and where a lot of experimentation takes place. But resolving remains key. For instance, we encourage girls to raise an alarm in public places when eve-tea­s­ed and guide them as to how they can deal wi­th it without resorting to violence.”

Apart from catering to current issues, CYC attracts you­ng social entrepreneurs by providing them support. “It is a big challenge for youngsters to start up in social sector. It thus becomes important to provide them financial and moral support. In CYC, they find not just their efforts being encouraged but are also inspired to remain focused as they work among other con­s­c­ious people,” informs Ashraf Patel, CYC’s convenor.

The main agenda, however, remains the ‘5th Space’. This concept is grounded in the belief that apart from family, livelihood, friends and leisure, youngsters need to understand themselves deeper by acting for social change. “Youngsters get nourished by this 5th space and some are encouraged to even take up politics if they feel it is the right medium for them to bri­ng in social change,” sha­res Arjun Shekhar, co-founder of the CYC.

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