This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by Youth Ki Awaaz. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

Mutual Growth: Society & Youth

More from Youth Ki Awaaz

Saakshi Mittal:

Who are the youth? What is the society? Why does the youth need the society and the society — the youth? On what basic parameters does this relationship thrive? Do you think of yourself when you come across the term “Youth of India”?

The answer to the first question varies in different regions and reports of the world. The United Nations General Assembly puts the age period of 15-24 years as the youth while the Common Wealth Youth Programme associates the term youth with the age group of 15-29. In a broader sense, we can link the youth to the group of age between 15-35 years (especially if we want to talk in terms of youth politics!).

Wikipedia answers the second question.

Society or human society is the manner or condition in which the members of a community live together for their mutual benefit. By extension, society denotes the people of a region or country, sometimes even the world, taken as a whole. The relationship of the youth with the society (and vice versa) primarily defines how the youth interact with the community they live in- with their parents, relatives, neighbors, friends, etc; how they view, work, develop and build the systems (such as education; politics; service, corporate and financial sectors; etc) that build them.

One third of the total population of India lies in the age group of 15-35 years, that is, the youth. Of this youth population, as small as twenty percent is what we term as the urban youth and the rest eighty percent is the rural youth. When I talk of the relationship of the youth with the society, with politics, with their parents and friends, I aim to highlight not only the interaction of the urban youth but also the rural youth with their community. Also, I have tried to understand these dynamics and present my views, without taking a conclusive stand.

The relationship of the youth and society, like every other, thrives on the concept of give and take. It would be unfair to draw parallels between the youth of yester years and the present generation, mainly because there is a prodigious difference between the variables (such as circumstances, education, exposure, etc) controlling the growth, behavior and reactions of the two generations of youth.

The youth of today is an empowered, confident and forth coming lot. They are more open because they have available to them a boundless arena of choices. The growing influence of media, the ever-growing competitiveness in all dimensions of education, the exposure to international job markets, the development of indigenous industries, etc – the factors that are often cited in every write-up have played an indispensable role in imparting new vigor to the younger generation.

In return, the youth is infusing in the society the spirit of achieving a new level of integration with the global world. They are playing the imperative role of re-structuring the thoughts of the Indian socio-economic and political culture. One of the distinct and vibrant (if I may take the liberty to say so) characteristic of the young generation is that they are willing to experiment with new ideas. Take the example of accepting the idea of gay and lesbian relationships and then voicing their support for the same. The legalization of prostitution has also found a tenacious stanchion in the Indian youth. From entering into professions that were dubbed as ‘side’ streams and lending themselves to their development to carving their own niche in economics, cinema, art, science, politics; the youth is painting the world with its colors.

There is however, a lack of initiative in the young generation today. It can logically be ascertained that for the growth of a developing economy such as India, serious entrepreneurial projects are extremely crucial. In the present scenario, employments of the conventional form that give them a hefty sum of money (ASAP) are the dominant attraction for the youth. The fast tracks to quick money define their life styles, thereby robbing the country of their intellect and risk taking capacity. The pro-active attitude towards social development is very well imbibed in this youth and a majority leads a self-consumed life.

Here, I would also like to point out to the disparity of resources and opportunities between the urban and the rural youth. Not only is there an absolute (and obsolete) lack of education of global standard for the rural youth, there is also widespread unemployment among them. It is an ongoing vicious cycle: poverty — improper education — lack of skills — unemployment — poverty. On top of this, there is the never ending crisis of ideology. The rural youth, in a bid to catch up with their urban counterparts fall easy prey to bestiality and violence and are thenceforth misused by political parties, religious groups or organizations having vested interests. This works up a negative cycle involving a good portion of the majority of the youth.

Youth participation and energy is indispensable for the evolution, expansion and advancement of the nation, especially one in which the youth forms such a large chunk of the population. However, it is of paramount importance that this energy be directed into channels of positive orientation and innovations.

Needless to say, it is impossible that this task be performed by the minority of youth — the urban youth only. The rural and urban youth must join hands together; bridge the gaps that separate them and build the road to a developed, economically and socially balanced nation for the society has looked and always will look upon its youth for lightening the baton of progress within its reaches.

Drop in a comment below or mail us at, you can also tweet us at @YouthKiAwaaz.

The writer is the Sub-Editor at Youth Ki Awaaz


Get your free copy of our eBook ‘Tips and Steps on How To Be The Change and Make a Difference’ now. Click here.

Recieve Youth Ki Awaaz news in your inbox. Subscribe now! Click here.

Supporters: SaveLife Foundation

You must be to comment.

More from Youth Ki Awaaz

Similar Posts

By Kaustav Dass

By The Guy In Mumbai

By Vaishnavi Gond

Wondering what to write about?

Here are some topics to get you started

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

Sign up for the Youth Ki Awaaz Prime Ministerial Brief below