CHANDIGARH (Punjab), Aug 26: Twenty youth and student leaders from Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, and Sikkim participated in an ‘orientation-cum-meeting’ held here on Sunday.
An initiative of the Don Bosco Youth Centre (DBYC), Itanagar, and the Don Bosco Navjeevan Society (DBNS), Chandigarh, the meeting was held in view of the 4th edition of the North East Youth Fest (NEYF) being held in Chandigarh.
Briefing the participants on the origin and aims of organizing the NEYF, DBYC director Fr Cyriac spoke about unfortunate incidents that took place in the lives of youths from the NE region, such as Nido Tania and Richard Loitam, which he said “inspired DBYC to rise to the occasion.
“North East Youth Fest Chandigarh should not be just yet another festival; it should be educative, entertaining and morally good, and make a sea change in the lives of the Northeast youth residing in Chandigarh,” said Fr Cyriac.
He also spoke about how the NEYF has grown year after year, and how organizations like the Rajiv Gandhi National Institute of Youth Development and Kare Partners, Chandigarh, and the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, Pema Khandu, have supported the initiative.
Fr Cyriac exhorted the leaders to “make a paradigm shift in leadership style and go the Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela way.”
DBNS director Fr Regi spoke of the need to establish a help desk for the Northeast youths in Chandigarh, and volunteered to provide free space for an office. He also suggested organising state-wise orientation programmes for the Northeast youths at least once a year.
In the open discussion that followed, the young leaders worked out the modalities of organizing the NEYF with the theme ‘Learning to live and work together’, a reality worth remembering.
The dates for the festival have been fixed for 9 and 10 November and the venue, St Stephen’s School, Sector 45, Chandigarh.
The young leaders also took the onus of raising fund from their leaders and elected representatives for the event.