They are the future leaders who will rule business empires and business conglomerates. And they balance their hectic schedules to fulfil their social responsibility – doing something to the areas they live, contributing to the society at large, and creating social awareness on various ills that are bothering us, and sharing joy with the weaker sections. These are neither time pass activities for them nor do they do them just for the heck of it. Instead, they pursue the tasks with passion and commitment at heart.
They are Young Indians living amongst us and who are silently leading a revolution when it comes to nation building. Young Indians (Yi) is one of the most active groups in Mysuru that takes pride in socially-oriented programmes that are ultimately aimed at contributing to India’s development process.
Yi is an integral part of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), a non-government, not-for-profit, industry-led and industry-managed organisation. Formed in 2002, with an objective of creating a platform for young Indians to realise the dream of a developed nation, Yi has 39 chapters all over India.
Yi membership includes young progressive Indians between the age group of 21 and 40 and comprises entrepreneurs, professionals and achievers from different walks of life. Its vision is to “become the Voice of Young Indians Globally” and it provides a platform for young Indians to participate in and contribute by becoming an integral part of India’s growth story.
The Mysuru Chapter of Young Indians is Chaired by Ramya Bopanna, Consultant, Prospects Placements, Co-chaired by Akshara Kumar, Founder, Truly Essential and Executive Member Chethan Kumar MS of Confederation of Indian Industry. The chapter has a strength of 65 strong members working in different spheres and contributing their time, energy and resources for social cause.
Yi’s work is divided primarily into three groups – “Youth Leadership”, “Nation Building” and “Thought Leadership”. “We have conducted a host of activities including Swachh Bharat campaigns, adopt a street, Project Masoom, Yi Emerge and project Siddhi.
“As part of Yuva, our student wing, we have signed MoUs with colleges and we conduct team building workshops, factory visits and conduct leadership workshops and sessions. Like for example, in Mysuru, we have an arrangement with Vidhyaashram College, Vidya Vikas, Vidhyavardhaka College, GSSS, SJCE and JSS Women’s College to conduct such programmes,” says Akshara Kumar.
Under Swachh Bharath, Yi Mysuru took up the responsibility of spreading awareness on noise pollution and initiated action at the community level to stop the growing menace of vehicle honking by launching “Horn Not Ok Please” (HNOP). Rallies were conducted across the city and HNOP stickers were stuck on more than 6,000 vehicles.
Associating itself with the Clean India mission, Yi Mysuru took up “Adopt a Street” in Gokulam to start with. The road leading to CII Office was declared a litter-free zone and with regular maintenance, the road stands as an example. The road was also widened and uneven patches on the sides were levelled.
“We had an MOU with the Childline, an NGO, and we got the support of the DDPI. A big challenge was to pool in volunteers to speak on sensitive topics like good touch and bad touch. We wanted people who could feel the subject and who had the time to reach out to the schools and students, at the schools’ convenience. The best option were to involve women who had an urge to connect with the children and share the message with love and patience. We are happy to say that from September 2015, Project Masoom has reached out to more than 7,000 students in and around Mysuru,” she explains.
Yi Emerge launched “Velocity: Starting Up in Mysuru”, an initiative to set up an ecosystem of entrepreneurship and innovation. Currently, Emerge connects with over 35 plus Mysuru-based start-ups, sharing their journeys, opportunities and challenges. Funding, government support, mentorship, manpower are some of the challenges faced by these start-ups.
Yi Emerge looks to give a boost to start-ups and extend support to entrepreneurs. The Velocity programme aims to contribute in making Mysuru the number one start-up capital in Tier-2 cities.
Start-ups were introduced to the Venture Capitalists Deepak Natraj from Aarin Capital & T C Meenakshisundaram, Founder and Managing Director, IDG Ventures India. The advisors visited a few start-ups in Mysore where they were presented with project reports and a few start-ups were funded by these venture capitalists directly.
Under Project Siddhi that was launched to support and promote agriculture, Yi Mysuru has been successful in connecting a few farmers directly to the market in Varuna Hobli.
“We aim to strengthen farming practices, educate farmers on the best practices and conduct sessions for them and their families. On June 15, Yi along with Government of Karnataka, is organising a mega health camp at Siddaramanahundi that aims to improve the health of about 8,000 plus farmers along with families,” says Shraddha Pathak, Chair, Branding and Communication, Yi Mysuru.
With 39 chapters in 27 states, 12,260 primary and secondary members and around 750 activities in a year impacting a million people and with 13 years of glorious past and decades ahead that promise nothing short, Yi intends to become a larger movement of young people and promote the attitude of “We Can, We Will”.