Uddeshya Delhi, a Youth for Youth Organization!

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As students, we are expected to create change in society. We are told to step up and fight against what we think is wrong. While it is every teacher, grandpa, inspirational speaker and 4t h grade debating topic’s duty to persuade us into believing that we need to bring about change ‘that we wish to see in the world’ (because everyone can?), there is undoubtedly some merit in taking our future in our own hands. In 2018, a group of students in Delhi lead by Simran Gulati from Hansraj College, Delhi University, took on this role with unbridled passion. The Delhi chapter under the parent organisation, Uddeshya India, started with a simple thought, ‘lets do something real’.
Uddeshya Delhi is a youth for youth organisation. The main issues it has taken up are mental health, women empowerment, social entrepreneurship, and substance abuse. It aims to give the youth of India the tools, skills and platform to become the future change-makes of the country. This will empower them, and allow them to create sustainable change. Each issue they take up is looked at from a fresh perspective creating unique events that impacts everyone who attends them in some way or another.
There are five teams who handle functioning of various aspects, such as Human Resources, Events and Operations, Research etc. With the hardworking heads of each team guiding the members, the environment created is extremely open and welcoming. Each person is encouraged to express their views and what they believe the organisation should take up. Not to mention, the heads and members are around the same age, allowing a sense of comfort and familiarity to envelop the entire working process. This results in a wonderful situation where people are working in a happy space for what they believe in, ensuring committed and passionate members. In this world of facades and complexities, Uddeshya Delhi allows a simple forum of expression and problem solving.
With the aim of change in mind, the students first addressed the grey, thundering and mostly ignored cloud above our heads – Mental Health Awareness. It organised fun events like Drum therapy and emotional events like the Share Project which became quite well- known amongst students. The Share Project involved three individuals who shared the stories of how they dealt with their mental health disorders- the good, bad and ugly parts of it. It provided a safe environment for many people to bring up what they were going through, leading to unburdened hearts and bittersweet memories. Their only complaint? It ended too soon. (Brownie point: They gave everyone brownies).
On Suicide Awareness Day, to increase accessibility, two experts on mental health participated in a Facebook Live session. They answered the questions of students watching the streaming and had a profound impact on them, leaving them a little wiser. The final event on mental health, Headspace, was an undoubted success, and was appreciated for its Slam Poetry, Human Library and distinguished panel discussion. Brilliant speakers from psychoanalysts to government officials working on substance abuse stimulated everyone’s
brains while the human library left everyone feeling lighter and happier. For many attendees it was a memorable day full of merriment.
Uddeshya’s flagship idea is that of Peer Educator Training Programme (PETP). The idea behind this is that you share your problems and concerns with members of the organisation, who strive to be your friends and thus give you advice not from a level of authority, but as someone who understands and empathises with your issues. The main assumption is that one is more inclined to listen to a friend rather than a figure of authority giving you orders and expecting you to follow them. The ‘Peer Educators’ are thoroughly trained to assume this role and to successfully deliver the PETP Module (which has been on various issues such as Sexual Harassment, AIDS awareness etc.) It organises orientations applying this initiative in all their events. The aforementioned modules were delivered by the various chapters of Uddeshya all over India, i.e. Mumbai, Nagpur, Chennai and Vellore. Uddeshya Delhi, in the coming weeks, and through intensive months-long research, has come up with its own module on Health. This will include sexual health, dietary health etc., and they are expected to deliver it in colleges and schools very soon.
Along with this, the organization has also maintained a blog on Medium.com, that contains various enlightening articles written by members from topics on women empowerment and mental health awareness to substance abuse.
It is very safe to say that Uddeshya Delhi has surpassed all expectations and done brilliant work in the past year. They have managed to do this despite their responsibilities as students, and will continue working hard and diligently. They regularly open up membership drives, so be sure to keep on a close watch on their Facebook and Instagram handles for more details. Uddeshya Delhi is living evidence of the fact that anyone can bring about some change, if that is what they truly want to do.

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