Wednesday 24 June 2015

Charge to the Mountains!

A group of 43 Award participants (22 boys and 21 girls) from Miles Bronson Residential School, Guwahati set out for their Adventurous  Journey to Rocky Island in a valley near Darjeeling, West Bengal.  The group left for their destination on 20 Mar 2015 night by train and was accompanied by the Director (Pastoral Care), two House Mistresses and two Sports Teachers. Having reached the railhead New Jalpaiguri the next morning, they left for Rocky Island by bus. The thrill of the adventure began almost immediately when they stopped by a freshwater stream en route to relish their breakfast. Finally they reached the place by noon.

The group was accommodated in tents and huts with the support of a simple bathroom/toilet and a kitchen with open dining space. The young people enjoyed their meals and were happy to wash their utensils themselves. The main focus this time was Rock Climbing and Trekking. Special care was taken throughout the trip to ensure their safety and security. Participants freely roamed around in the surrounding hills and streams accompanied by their Instructors and escorts. They were made to wade through a challenging width of the fast flowing stream, learning to work as a team with close coordination to cross the stream. Rappelling and steel wire sliding were among the other activities conducted during the camp. 

During the afternoon session the participants practiced erecting tents and shelters with natural wood and the minimal material available. In the evening the group gathered around the campfire and participated in the music, dance and group games. 

On 23 Mar morning the group was guided on a trek through hills, deep forests and streams. They were taught various types of knots to be used while making support systems to cross streams and also given training on survival tactics in the jungle. By afternoon the group departed for New Jalpaiguri to return to Guwahati by rail. The group reached MBRS the next morning.

The participants learned not only basic life skills to survive in a jungle but also strengthened their confidence. The trip was a huge success and many of them can't wait for the next available opportunity to return to those environs again!

Wednesday 17 June 2015

My Days with the Award

The Young People of today are vocal. They want to talk about their experiences, their likes and dislikes and interests. The Award Programme encourages Young People to speak their minds. Let us hear from Dev Suri, Gold Award Holder about his experiences...

I am immensely grateful to my school Jodhamal Public School, Jammu for initiating me and motivating me to participate in the IAYP programme. After going through assorted adventurous journeys, village visits, conducting events and developing distinct skills I was beginning to see myself as a teacher or trainer in the IT sector.

It was a memorable day for me when I received the prestigious Gold Award in 2014 at Delhi, awarded by former Chief Election Commissioner of India, Dr SY Qureshi .Throughout the programme I welcomed the exposure to different lifestyles via the village visits and developed a positive perspective towards the development of society - overcoming the negative attitude that I had earlier. I realized that it is programmes like the IAYP that really make the difference and challenge others with the question: "If we can, then why can't you?", thus creating a web of people who care for preserving the ecosystem. I myself motivate others to take up this programme which helps in the development of life skills and as a way to render services to the society at a young age.

All around us we see that the growing corruption, scams, violence and other issues have created pessimism in people; but these are the people who mostly stand and stare. It is time for the young minds of our nation to take some action by being a part of this programme, for nurturing optimism towards the eradication of such evils, for developing a character or combination of skills and emotions that will create better human beings as light of hope for our planet. It is necessary to realign our perspective towards life and to find the meaning of our existence in the ecosystem, to strive for the betterment of our future and conservation of environment and its inhabitants, and this is where the IAYP programme has definitely helped me, because a change of perspective is all it takes to see the light.

IAYP Award Ceremony and Workshop at Jodhamal Public School

On 23rd May 2015 Award Presentation Ceremony for The International Award for Young People (IAYP) was held in Jodhamal Public School, Jammu. The honourable chief guest Bivujit Mukhoty (Programme Manager Award Programme Foundation) was welcomed by Trilok Singh Bist (Principal) along with Monika Sethi (Vice -Principal). Shallu Sharma (School coordinator for IAYP) introduced the chief guest, who inspite of the busy schedule consented to grace the occasion, which was succeeded by the invocation and welcome note by the IAYP students followed by knowledgeable and inspiring address by the chief guest wherein he highlighted the importance and impact of the award on youth. He emphasized that the sole objective of the award is character building and empowerment of youth so that they develop ability, focus and determination for any type of achievement and to face any challenge in the real world. The chief guest facilitated and appreciated the four silver and sixteen bronze awardees. The award ceremony was followed by the various cultural items prepared by IAYP students. They presented enchanting dance performances, inspiring and motivating nukkad natak on women empowerment and exhibited thought provoking paintings. Their work was appreciated by all and had instill desire, confidence and enthusiasm in the minds of aspiring students to join IAYP.  The programme was concluded by vote of thanks by Shallu Sharma.  Bivujit Mukhoty and Shallu Sharma also introduced the Award Programme to the new aspirants and briefed the Award philosophy and structure to them. The entire workshop had instilled desire, confidence and enthusiasm among the new participants.  Click here for more pictures

Wednesday 10 June 2015

Life After Gold

Arunish Singh, Gold Award Holder from Welham Boys' School, Dehra Dun sharing his experience during his Award Journey for all three levels.

Don't live life as it is meant to be lived.  Change its course to the harsh and the mildest of conditions and you will see the wonders of life! I have always been actively involved in all spheres of my school life. IAYP was one of them and I must say the experience has been very enriching. Even on having achieved the Gold Award of the International Award for Young People I do not feel content. I say so because during the past three years I have worked to achieve these three levels: Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards; I have been from the harshest climatic conditions during my Adventurous Journey trek to the harshest human conditions during my Service. The Skill and Physical Recreations were not something I was compelled to do. I was blessed to be in one of the nation's finest schools, Welham Boys' where all the criteria to be an Award holder of the IAYP did not make us take a harsh route.

The school trained us from the very beginning to be involved in all spheres of life primarily because it's a boarding school. Day boarders and people who are not a part of such institutes might have found it very difficult to achieve the IAYP standards. This Award gave me an objective to work upon. And still there is so much to learn and so much to conquer.

IAYP helps us embark on a journey of learning and discovery which takes us beyond the classroom. And indeed teaches us all the values and qualities of a gentleman and a good human being that we are meant to learn in a class. Our mentor Mr. Laxman Singh who introduced the IAYP to our school motivated us immensely. With his support we always worked beyond the time limit because he taught us on our journey to accomplish the Awards that the Award should not be our main objective; the learning will eventually help us shape our future and guide us through the storms of life. In the words of Mark Twain he taught us that "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream. Discover."

India - Sri Lanka Youth Exchange (ISYE) Programme

The Audacious Dreams Foundation, India in association with National Youth Services Council (NYSC), Ministry of Youth Affairs, Govt. of Sri Lanka and the Commonwealth Youth Council (CYC) are jointly hosting the India-Sri Lanka Youth Exchange (ISYE) Programme which is to be held in Sri Lanka from 5th to 12th July 2015.
The ISPG award aspirants are participating in this Global Understanding and Sustainable Development (GUSD) programme. Audacious Dream Foundation extends an opportunity to invite IAYP students all around India to participate in the ISYE programme. During this exchange programme the participants will have the opportunity to interact with the Hon. Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Youth Affairs Minister and other dignitaries.
The GUSD programme India-Sri Lanka Youth Exchange 2015 will give an opportunity to unleash the potential of our India-Sri Lanka youth to empower themselves and the community around them. This GUSD visit will help the fellow youth to foster peace talks, civic responsibility, cultural understanding, and policy exchange through communication, rich diverse experience, field visits etc.  This is an opportunity for youth to develop and engage with societal issues and be new generation change agents.

Participants doing the Award Programme anywhere in India are encouraged to apply with their updated profile and a one-page motivation letter on why they wish to apply for the GUSD programme. Selected participants will be provided with partial scholarship to participate in this event.  For more information, please get in touch with Dinesh Gajendran

Wednesday 3 June 2015

Gender Diversity Empowerment Project

The Skills Development programme of the Gender Diversity Empowerment Project under the aegis of the International Special Project Grants is running successfully in West Bengal. Adrija Chatterjee, Award Leader reported that 15 Award participants from different rural and marginalised areas of West Bengal are participating in the Skill Development programme. The project team opened a special section in a shop on 21st April, 2015 to sell imitation jewellery and handmade items on a regular basis in Kolkata. The small store was appreciated by the local people and the team welcomes over 20 guests on the first day. The Award Programme Foundation congratulates the particiants, Award Leaders and friends of the Award for making this project a success, with the hope that this programme would help participants to use this skill as their Life Skill.

Experience of IAYP...

Shivani Verma, from Jodhamal Public School, Jammu shares her Silver Journey experience with the Award family.
Since childhood I have been interested in painting and it was thanks to the IAYP that I had a platform to display my talent which was widely appreciated by my teachers. I have always been a shy person but participating in the IAYP programme helped me overcome my shyness and also prove my worth as a good artist. IAYP activities helped me hone all spheres of my personality from my speaking skills to confidence level.  So, I am really thankful for this great opportunity through which I discovered my true potential as a person as well as an artist.
Even the adventure camps opened new horizons for me because of which I came closer to nature, capturing through my paintings, the beauty that I saw around me. I hope you appreciate my paintings and feelings behind it.  And the credit obviously goes to IAYP. IAYP taught me to "Dream big and be realistic because the sky has no limit".