Dr. Avnish Jolly, 26 May:Working with the Generation – Next is a matter of great importance and challenge. I am actively involved with Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan from last few years as resource person.
The Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) an autonomous body of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India was set up in 1972 as Nehru Yuvak Kendra under the erstwhile Ministry of Education. It currently has 500 district level offices, 2.16 lac village level youth clubs and 80 lac rural youth affiliated to it in 13-35 age group. Youth constitute the most creative segment of any society. Their role and contribution are vital to society hence their capacity building and orientation required continuously. The NYKS today prepares over 11,000 youth leaders every year. For more information visit http://www.nyks.org
Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and UNFPA introduced the adolescent development programme few years back. With the efforts of NYKS in 63 districts adolescent programme pilot has been on. Novelty of adolescent development programme brings new challenges and ideas almost daily to my colleagues in the field. With the help of Resource Persons at different levels NYKS interacted with adolescents at different level and started working with them with dreams of a nation become easier to realise when the development is inclusive; when the ladder functions alternatively as a bridge on the gaps; and when we talk in turns as partners. Following three important issues come across:
How the teen clubs formed under this programme are to mature and sustain as a village level institution
What should be the structure of career counselling for the rural, non-student youth and adolescents in the face of challenges of the new economy and of the future over rural India
How to make peer education among the rural adolescents more effective
The Project has been developed a free flowing one with concepts and systems of training, capacity building, human organization (specific to adolescents), and sustenance of adolescent development programme with only two objectives:
• Strengthen the managerial and technical capacity of the NYKS and fields persons for successful implementation, management and monitoring of the Scheme;
• Build environment for improving knowledge on adolescent reproductive health and life skills of adolescent boys and girls, especially those out-of-school.
With the efforts of NYKS the civil society including the decision makers at the implementation and village levels through these workshops, the fact remains that the adolescent programmes and concerns have not reached the threshold level in the manner (and to the extent) the knowledge and awareness about HIV and AIDS have reached among the adult population in the country.
The Adolescent development programme has an edge over the general awareness drives on HIV and AIDS through the IEC for adult population. While talking to adolescents and their parents, should we talk about “unsafe sex” as a valueless or amoral behaviour (outside the wedlock) that prevails in society where HIV and AIDS thrive; or should we dub that behaviour as an immoral one and therefore undesirable? This question comes up again and again before the trainer.
The NYKS workers in the field have noticed that presenting things totally in a valueless manner – on the name of scientific objectivity, leaves certain uncovered space in the minds of the people, and specially the adolescents. Here comes in the role of social sciences.
Strategically NYKS tried to solve the problem by making use of the training as a converging point of extra-socialization. NYKS in its Protocol prepared for the 45 days’ training on Life skills has suggested for the trainers that they should revert to anthropological stance of taking the academic subject of family as the starting point. The trainer should talk about four basic and universal functions of the family (a la Murdock), of which sex and procreation are two. Sexual activity between a man and a woman is conceived in the explanation of the family as a matter of responsibility within the family formed as a consequence of marriage. It is a matter of universal consensus on the diachronic movement of human civilization. This piece of discussion then makes it easier for the doctor to talk about human physiology and reproductive system to be followed by the reproductive sexual health.
Generation – Next, rather want more according to the report shared by K.L.Khanna, Jt. Director, (Research, Evaluation,Training; Adolocent and Special Programmes, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan)