Exploring The Power of Youth Leadership

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National Youth Day

By: M Ahmad

Youth can be the leaders of tomorrow. The power of youth is the common wealth for the entire world andthe faces of young people are the faces of our past, our present and our future. Youth leadership happens anytime a young person takes control, manages, directs and leads themselves and/or others. Within themselves, young people show leadership by identifying what matters to them and holding true to those things, including their values, objectives, goals and ideas.Young people can lead by example, lead by following and lead through determination. Youth leadership can include actions that affect other youth, younger children and adults.

Youth constitutes major portion of the total national population in India. Around 25 percent population of the world is also of youth. Such a major portion of the population plays an important role in the development of the nations and cannot be ignored. The determination and energy with which youth can work makes them the most valuable and capable citizens of any nation.

It is a vivid fact that youth can help in rapid growth and development and are the building blocks in the economic and social development of a nation. Well educated and trained youths contribute their skills and vigour in almost every sector in a developing economy. They give their services as engineers, doctors, administrators, teachers, lecturers, and in several other capacities. The energy level and confidence of youths make them risk takers and subsequently achieve new heights in their respective domains. Youths in a nation, create a productive and efficient environment conducive to economic and social progress.

National Youth Day is observed on 12 August in India to spread awareness about the youth and draws attention to the issues faced by them. No doubt the day focuses on the efforts of the youth in the development of the country,it is also celebrated to recognise the efforts of the youth in enhancing global society. Also, the day promotes ways to engage youngsters in making positive contributions to their communities. It is celebrated in honour of the birthday of Swami Vivekananda, who was an influential figure in India in the 19th century and a firm believer in the power of youth. Swami Vivekananda promoted philosophies and ideals that might be a great source of inspiration and for the youth of the country of India.

There is a need for the youth to come together, engage in activities with diverse needs and interests, participate in the decision-making process, and freely express themselves. But for this youth need safe spaces like civic spaces which enable them to engage in governance issues; public space to participate in sports and other leisure activities in the community; digital spaces to interact virtually across borders with everyone; well-planned physical spaces that can help to accommodate the needs of youth, especially suffering from any kind of violence etc.

History is witness that the next generation has been the answer to solve future problems. As time passes by, it is required to adapt to the changes and young people are capable of doing so. The role of Youth in nation-building or development is very important, and this is because the development of any nation lies in the future generation. Democracy, economy, technology and the improvement of medical science all lie in the hands of the Youth. Youth is the most dynamic and important segment of the population in any country andstatistics show that the developing countries which have a large youth population could be seeing tremendous growth in all the sectors provided they invest in young people’s education, health and protect and guarantee their rights. It is believed that today’s young minds are tomorrow’s leaders, creators, builders and innovators.

Statistics show that India has the upper hand over other countries as 62 % of the population here is the Youth. Young minds are known to be innovative and hard-working who can change the country only if proper opportunities are given to them. In our society, we have been guided to pursue careers in either engineering or medical science. This could be because of the pressure from the family or the trend in society and has become a major cause for the downfall of the Youth. A statistical report suggests that about 55% of engineering youth are unemployed because they don’t have the required skills to crack a job. Arts and politics and other sectors need to be explored by the youth in order to create an ambience of development and progress.

Educational and informative programs should be developed to teach the young people from the school level the importance and the impact they can have on the country if they explore every single field relevant to their interest and strengths. Our young generation must consider different career options such as politics, which eventually helps in running the country.  They can be a positive influence in society and can also solve the problem by introducing innovative and impactful ideas that will only help in the betterment of the country. They have the ability to create an identity for themselves, which will help in creating an impact.

They are the future and they have the perspective which the older generations lacks andtheir zeal and enthusiasm must be channelized properly to help a nation prosper and flourish. The power of youth should be used wisely for the progress of a nation. It is important to frame policies which aim at empowering our youths to assure better tomorrow and brighter future. Young people are full of ideas and have infinite source of energy to put their ideas into practice. They have strong opinions and do not fear voicing them. Youths are up to date with current happenings and latest technology.

To ensure participation of the youths in national development, they need to be encouraged and supported by their parents, civil society and government. Providing quality education, employment opportunities and empowerment to the youths are key factors in achieving progress and development. It is important that the youth get to exercise their freedom of speech, ideas and opinions. They should get the right platform to voice their opinions, share their ideas and showcase their talent. There is a need for inclusive support mechanisms for youth so that they can amplify their efforts collectively and individually to restore the planet and protect it.

M Ahmad is a regular writer for this newspaper and can be reached at [email protected]

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