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Youth Leadership - Sahayana

Creating Leaders for Social Change
Leaders need careful mentoring where individual dilemmas, conflicts, and anxieties are resolved within a political and ethical framework. Our goal is to leave behind a legacy of a generation of youth leaders with fresh perspectives, who can truly work towards a just, humane, and sustainable world.
The Fifth Space

The Fifth Space

Dialogue Event by Mangalore Youth Resource Center

It is imperative for young people to have a space where they can gain perspective and reflect upon who they are as individuals and as part of humanity. Developing their inner resources also means exploring one’s persona, relationships, spirituality, sexuality, ethics and world views.

The Fifth Space is one that exists beyond the four spaces inhabited by young people – family, friends, education/work, and leisure. 

In this space, young people can come together, share their experiences, receive guidance and support from youth mentors, and reflect upon the various aspects of their lives. It is a space where they can be seen and heard for who they are, and gain acceptance from their peers and mentors.

We provide this space through our Youth Resource Centres, also known as YRCs.

In the last 30 years, through our YRC's outreach activities

Youth Reached
Youth Leaders Created

As young people get more comfortable with and begin taking ownership of the fifth space, youth mentors begin to have individual discussions with them on a variety of topics. Life, love, or the cosmos – nothing is left out! Through these conversations, we understand each person’s unique universe, and guide them to a deeper level of participation and reflection through Samvada’s residential courses and workshops. Youth from different centres come together, enriching the space with their diverse identities and experiences.

Each centre builds the legacy of a generation of youth leaders who deeply care about social and ecological justice. Youth leaders, emerging out of each centre, often join hands with local movements in their geography, bringing fresh perspectives and working towards a just, humane, and sustainable world.

This Programme offers

Life Skills & Leadership

We call our workshops Nota, which means “perspectives" or "ways of looking" in Kannada. We encourage young people to reflect on their lives through social and historical lenses.

Ola Nota

Society and Me
Young people reflect on their life’s journey, dreams, pressures, and experiences. They begin to unpack multiple layers of socialization that have contributed to their social and historical selves. Mentors help them analyse these experiences in the context of social structure, culture and hegemonies which run through our society.

Hasiru Nota

Environment and Me
Students begin to understand the impact of our lifestyle on the earth, by tracking their own carbon footprints, lifestyle aspirations and analyzing consumption patterns of food, clothes, transport. They encounter facts on sustainable development and climate change while having fun! The workshop is meant to critique and provoke a deeper understanding of the issues, as well as find innovative pathways to a greener earth.

Bahutva Nota

Pluralism and Me
The workshop gives young people an enlightening experience on peace and pluralism. Students explore metaphysical questions about god, religion and spirituality in their own ways. They meet people of different faiths, and visit different places of worship. We ask questions on what is common to all our religions and how the message of peace can thrive, despite inter-religious differences.

Inclusion Nota

Social Inclusion and Me
The workshop shines a light on how historical structures operate to exclude and marginalise oppressed groups in the society we live in. Through our own ways of living, we begin to see how each one of us is complicit in excluding the other. Thus, young people learn to cultivate sensitivity and understand the need to make efforts for an inclusive world.

Livelihood Planning

VRUTHI NOTA, as our career workshop is called, helps young people explore their work aspirations. Along with information on different careers, we provide a space where they can think beyond socially-desirable and socially-limited choices and careers. With information about the changing world of work, and reflections on their own motivations and needs, each person is supported to arrive at their own unique career path.

Leadership Training

Students who show the potential and passion for leadership roles are also trained in contemporary social processes like:

  • Leadership for Social Change: Potential leaders learn to analyse the impacts of globalization, the spread of fundamentalism and ecological crises. They also begin to work on short term and long term responses, while exploring the relevance of youth activism and its challenges. The workshop builds clarity about leadership roles, styles, and skills along with different perspectives on leadership. Students learn critical skills of understanding group dynamics, building consensus, taking responsibility for decisions/stances, and managing conflict, among others.
  • Campaign Training: Young people are given training on how to design and manage a campaign all by themselves. The campaign training workshop equips them with the nitty-gritties of designing events, sharpening campaign slogans, developing great communication skills, managing campaign teams, liaising with colleges, the media and various communities.
  • Coordinating a Campaign: Young leaders challenge and hone their abilities by leading campaigns in their local geographies. They become change makers, coming together to lead and influence campaigns for youth rights across campuses and different YRC’s.
  • Social Movements and Initiatives for Social Change:  Budding leaders are introduced to a wide range of social movements, individuals, and NGOs that fight for social justice. The philosophies, strategies and impacts of each of these are discussed so that young people are inspired, even while developing pragmatic ways of initiating change.
  • Workshops on Constitutional Values and Youth Rights
    Youth leaders will become aware of their youth rights and constitutional rights and Responsibilities. With this awareness, they will be able to advocate, campaign and initiate individual and collective actions to promote youth rights as well as constitutional values of justice, liberty, equality, democracy and secularism.
  • Building Youth Clubs
    Youth leaders form and lead youth clubs with their peers through which they advocate for the realization of youth rights as well as constitutional values among youth and the general public in their respective geographies, colleges and community via campaigns and events. They also learn to and are encouraged to participate meaningfully in democratic processes at the local, regional and national, levels by lending their voices especially to decisions that concern them like the youth budget, the state and national youth policy.

Inaugural of Yuvaandolan- state level campaign on fundamental rights and duties by youth leaders of Chitradurga Youth Resource Centre

Youth Support

The YRCs provide infrastructural support to youth such as access to a library, computers and the internet. Our youth mentors are trained to provide support and guidance to every student who comes to the YRCs. It’s not just information on higher education that we provide; we help young people find and follow their dreams.  

Young people are often seen as humanity’s hope, but we forget that they need to be supported as they make the difficult transition to adulthood.

We listen to their dreams and support them through their despair. We help them believe in themselves and aspire for better.

We interact with incredible young people who struggle to pursue their dreams in the face of great disadvantages. When the future of their education comes under threat due to financial constraints, we provide fee support as much as possible. We also step in when a student requires crisis support, in the eventuality of a medical or personal emergency.