National Youth Day

Youths are the future of our nation. Let’s celebrate the national youth day by learning about the significance of this day and also learning about how the youth population contributes to our nation.

National youth day is celebrated every year on 12th of january to commemorate Swami  Vivekananda’s birthday. Youth all over the world are inspired by his teachings about life, success and learning. He is a perfect role model for each and every student of India. This day was first observed in 1985 throughout India. This day is celebrated in schools and colleges by organising various competitions, speeches, seminars, debates, essays, quizzes, etc. On this day the youth population, which is about one-fifth of India’s total population understand their importance in the country. They also learn about Swami Vivekanada and his life principles. During the coronavirus pandemic, it will be difficult for schools and colleges to  conduct these programmes and so I think that this article will embolden them and encourage them to spread their ‘Wings of Fire’.

Swami Vivekananda was born on 12th january, 1863 in Calcutta, Bengal Presidency (present day- Kolkata, West Bengal). He was one of the greatest spiritual leaders in India. He introduced the concept Yoga and Vedanta in the western world. He was the student of Shree Ramakrishna Paramhansa. He travelled to the United States and represented India at the 1893 Parliament of the World’s Religions. He also conducted numerous public and private lectures and classes. He circulated Hinduism philosophies in Europe, Britain and the USA. ‘Karma Yoga’ and ‘Raja Yoga’ are some of his most celebrated publications. He worked for humanity and the betterment of our society.

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What can the youth learn from Swami Vivekananda?

The teachings of Swami Vivekananda motivated the students to “Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached.” These teachings tell us about the uncommon and remarkable personality of Swami Vivekananda. These teachings are based on his life situations 

  1. Be honest to everyone. Lying is a good way to get away with your mistakes but only in the short run. A lie leads to a thousand more lies. On the other hand speaking the truth is always best. The blame will come on you but people will always believe you. Honesty is the best policy. 
  2. You should always stick with the truth. Often, many people will stop you from telling the truth. They may repress you by using force or blackmailing you. But even in such times you should remember that truth is the small lamp that lightens the world.
  3. To achieve success, focus on your goals. Many-a-times people ultimately give up on their dreams, this is because they don’t focus on their goals. We become successful only when we work hard on our goals.
  4. Swami Vivekananda also taught everyone to face all the problems with courage and never run away from them. Every problem in life teaches us something new. Running away never really solves your problems, it just makes the problems an invisible weight on you.

Swami Vivekananda was a great person. We should remember him and follow his teachings. 

Happy National Youth Day to you.

How can the youth make an impact?

Youth can bring a great change, they can change this world. Indian teenagers are yet to realize their full potential. They think that they can make an impact only after getting a job.

How can a teen make an impact?

The very first thing that we as youth can do is to know our rights. Know about your right to information, right to equality, right to freedom and other rights. These are important because this will assist you to determine those people whose rights are being suppressed. You can even make people aware of their rights.

To change the world you need to understand the world and its complex systems. For being capable of this understanding, education is very important. Every youth must be educated. Education increases a family’s standard of living and promotes economic development. More educated people will mean more economic growth. Education also helps to eradicate poverty.

Gender and race based stereotypes have always existed in our society. We can make an impact by even stopping one small stereotypic comment. We should even educate the people that every person deserves equal respect in this world. Education also helps in breaking this stereotypic perspective and teaches that each individual is unique in his/her own way.

We should always be aware about local and state issues. We can discuss these issues with our friends, families and teachers and find the solutions to it. When we learn about some issues, we can share our views on more similar issues. We also ponder upon the reasons because of which this problem became such a big issue. Knowing more about our locality urges us to be a responsible resident.

Just learning about various issues is not enough. We should speak up whenever we see anything wrong happening. We should speak up when we want to ask something. We should speak up even for others. We should speak up when we don’t feel well. Suppressing thought and feelings will make us unhappy. Speak your views and opinions confidently. 

We can join many organisations and groups as volunteers to share our views to others. Organizations influence many people and society. As a volunteer you can visit the households and make the issues/concerns be heard by all the people and also gather direct feedback from them. These groups generally take actions faster. You will not feel alone while protesting and campaigning.

You can even join many campaigns to protest against gender inequality, climate change, racism and any other issues. By campaigning against any wrong decision or thing, governments will have to review its decision and also stop any action that is not right according to the constitution. A peaceful rally is also a good means of protest but you have to make sure that it does not turn violent.

We all are aware of climate change. We can together combat and reverse it by organising rallies. We can even take digital actions like storming twitter, sharing posts on a single hashtag. Online campaigning is the new trend.

We should volunteer whenever we get a chance. Volunteering helps various people and organizations. We meet many people while volunteering. Each of our experiences are very special and they teach us something new.

And together we can change the world.

National Youth Day

United Nations celebrates International Youth Day as on 12th August every year. Youth – this term signifies the blooming faces, ongoing adolescence who are capable for bringing a change for any particular country. A country is actually based on the power of the Youth. It has been said that, if you can educate the youth and the women, you are educating the country. A man goes through the younger stage of his life, this is the time when he holds supreme power to revolutionize. If the younger generations of a country aren’t sorted enough, the country cannot develop. The “youth” sectioned are actually the ages between 15-24. According to the definitions of United Nations – “Youth is best understood as a period of transition from the dependence of childhood to adulthood’s independence. That is why, as a category youth is more fluid than other fixed age groups. Yet, age is the easiest way to define this group, particularly in relations to education and employment, because “youth” is often referred to a person, between the age of leaving compulsory education, and finding their first job.” “The Secretory General first referred to the current definition of youth in 1981 in his report to General Assembly on International Youth Year (A/36/215,para.8 of the annex) and endorsing it in ensuring reports it in ensuing reports (A/40/256,para.19 of the annex). However, in both the reports, the Secretory- General also recognized that apart from statistical definition, the meaning of the term “youth” varies in different societies around the world. When The General Assembly, by its resolution 50/81 in 1995, adopted World Programme Of Action for the Youth to the year 2000 and beyond, it reiterated that the U.N defined youth as the age cohort of 15-24. The General Assembly resolution A/RES/56/117 in 2001, The Commission for Social Development resolution E/2007/26 and E/CN.5/2007/8 n 2007 and the General Assembly resolution A/RES/62/126 in 2008 also reinforce the same age-group for Youth.” The Youth is stepping stone for a Country. They has the authority to form latest policies, they are the voices of tomorrow. The difference of youth from childhood is that, they are not qualified enough to take their own decisions for themselves, rather they had to depend on someone whereas the old-aged, though a lot more experienced, lacks physical and mental power. If the Youth section do not approve or appreciate any particular rule, they would protest leading to the downfall of the entire country. It depends on this section to educate themselves and lift up the conditions of the country. As in youth age, a person can always choose his carrier and work on it, as fresh talents are always welcomed by any aspects of the Country. They would contribute more for the benefits of a country, and has immense understanding of pointing out the flaws and drawbacks. Particularly, the young age is lucid and devoid of being influenced easily. They cannot be manipulated as they behold intelligence. The youth section has the privilege to mend himself up, till he reaches the middle age. This age group is not at all rigid to the dynamic changes happening around anyway. They can quickly adopt themselves according to the needs and requirements of the country. The Youth serves the country, the burden lies on their shoulders to level up the conditions of the society. Various activities are to be taken up by them, supporting the cause. The more a youth age involves themselves to hard work, the more a country upgrades. The perfect ‘youth’ not only draws himself close to perfection, but also embraces the inconsistency of working of the country and corrects them. This is obvious and needless to say, that youth is the Generation next and would find regular faults in the surroundings, and would also criticize. “Youth” can bring out a huge amendment or the modifications, for advancement of the Country.

Educate The Underprivileged Children

“The main hope of a nation lies in the proper education of it’s youth.”

– Erasmus

Education is a necessary tool as it plays a vital role in one’s life. It provides us with the skillset to survive and thrive in this world. It shapes our ideas and brains so we can have critical thinking skills; and enables us to differentiate ourselves mindless sheep. Education is essential as it constitutes a means to eradicate the various social evils that prevail and plague our society like poverty, racism, gender discrimination, differentiation based on colour, caste, creed, religion. It’s quintessential in leading a good and healthy life, enabling us to learn and practice rules & regulations while making us responsible citizens of the nation. It is rightly said that education is the foundation upon which we build our future.

Children are inherently valuable as the pillars of the nation, and, therefore its extremely important that they’re encouraged and provided with resources to study & attain good education.

However, as unfortunate as it is, our global culture has stolen the rightful priority of children and placed it squarely on the wants of the adults. Our laws, our media, our investments; all favour the desires of adults first, second, third, and fourth, before ever considering youth. Our adult-centric society takes bets and loans against children, leveraging their future without consent. Thus, it’s essential that we realize that every child should be educated because each child is precious. Even though people have started realizing this gradually, the path of educating the underprivileged and enabling them a means to build a secure future still remains rocky nevertheless.

Awareness still remains an issue as the underprivileged communities are not well aware about education or importance of it, thus, they don’t understand or realize the need to send their children to schools. There’s a severe lack of role models modelling good learning practices and sharing the understanding that schools are indispensable in providing a space where skills are obtained and that the more skills obtained the greater chance at future successes. The next major hindrance is the accessibility to the education institutions. For some, obtaining the inexpensive education resources such as books, copies, pens, etc. too might appear a distant dream. The next impediment lies in the feedback received from those who are educated, yet unemployed or under-employed. This is partly because many educated are, in fact unemployable and others struggle to get a job even when they are employable. In the eyes of parents, therefore, education is either luxury or a palliative. The poor parents cannot afford luxury. The expected value of education, at least from their perspective, remains low.

And thus, due to the aforementioned reasons, the underprivileged communities remain perpetuated in the vicious cycles of poverty and misery for generations altogether. The only way for them to escape from repeating the cycle is acquiring an education and building a safe, secure and stable future on the basis of it.

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“If we nurture the dreams of children, the world will be blessed. If we destroy them, the world is doomed!”

Wasting Minds: Is The Education System Failing Us?

If the purpose for learning is to score well on a test, we’ve lost sight of the real reason for learning.

– Jeannie Fulbright

Education is the form of learning that directs each individual to pursue his interests, to sharpen his skills, to become comfortably employable. The ultimate effects of education may vary from teaching others to take the nation forward to creating world class technologies depending on the individuals. It is different from being literate which is simply defined as being able to ‘read, write and speak. Education system on India in the olden days of Takshila and Nalanda Universities relied on creativity and was famous in the whole world for it. It was the scope for creativity that education provided that fulfilled it’s purpose of developing the society in totality. There is no point of educating an individual without having an effect, directly or indirectly, on the society.

Presently, the Indian Education System is in fiasco, mostly owing to shoddy politics. It now focuses on rewarding rote learning sans understanding, penalising those who question, suppressing free thought and pigeon-holing clueless kids into “streams” and yet manages to combine the corruption and ineptitude of the public services with the greed of the private. Did I forget to mention the abysmally low salaries for teachers and the utter incapability of society to deal with failure?

The entire ranking list of toppers is an unapologetic hierarchy of rote learning, where we’re never ashamed of showcasing the performance of disability. The day since rote learning has replaced knowledge as a standardized way of judgement, it has become more of fierce, dark competition, where children chase absolutely nothing. Celebrating success of this kind was meant to be an all-round personal achievement and not a standard system a failed competition in education. Succeeding in a hollow system like the one that prevails now, is even more worse than not gathering enough knowledge and failing a number of times.

The system is so sick that it has become an antithesis of the pleasure in knowledge acquirement and freedom. With such imprudent exaltation of so called toppers furthermore makes the entire failed system even more worse and disheartening to the not so called toppers, rather the victims of a still failed system. The entire definition of “excellence” is being misjudged. Perfection is unattainable, and in this case, is a complete trick of misjudgement.

Education system was meant to come out with a strategy that would scrap discrimination and not jeopardize the learning process. Authorities shouldn’t teach us displeasing habits of grading every human being out there by a completely wrong system, rather they should join hands to cultivate a sense of morality, joy of learning in every individual and aim towards an all-round development of a human being than pushing towards the death end of a cliff with all sort of cursed strategies.

The ongoing pandemic only magnified the shortcomings of the education system.
The structure of schooling and learning, including teaching and assessment methodologies, was the first to be affected by these closures. Only a handful of private schools could adopt online teaching methods. Their low-income private and government school counterparts, on the other hand, have completely shut down for not having access to e-learning solutions. The students, in addition to the missed opportunities for learning, no longer have access to healthy meals during this time and are subject to economic and social stress.

The pandemic has significantly disrupted the higher education sector as well, which is a critical determinant of a country’s economic future. A large number of Indian students—second only to China—enrol in universities abroad, especially in countries worst affected by the pandemic, the US, UK, Australia and China. Many such students have now been barred from leaving these countries. If the situation persists, in the long run, a decline in the demand for international higher education is expected.

Parents, students, and employers must demand that our institutions deliver real capability and not empty certificates. Let us stamp our vote to those leaders who can make this happen. Let us not keep quiet till we get what we deserve. But with the right to raise our voices comes the responsibility to stay invested. Media must capture this moment and ensure that those in power heed this call. It must hold them accountable for action.
It is our children’s future, not our ancestor’s pride, that deserves our outrage first.

Only then can we begin to unleash the potential of our 100 million young minds.