Each person is born with a unique talent. However, only a few young people tend to identify their talent and passion, to work on it. Those who follow passion are those who use their full potential. Connecting passion and profession not only leads to a meaningful and meaningful life, but also to a successful career.
However, as a young person, do you know enough about the world of work to make an informed career decision after college? And what factors should inform such decision-making? Our finances, passions, and priorities are different as unique individuals, but our career choices rarely reflect them.
We recently hosted a Young Leaders Conclave, an open space for young leaders to come together, explore challenges in their communities, and support each other in their search for solutions. The theme was “Motivated by Passion”. The platform was to talk about the challenges and struggles young people face when following their passions.
Young leaders joined us to share their journeys of building a career of passion and to discuss solutions to improve career awareness, as well as access to support systems that help young people plan sustainably. their passion.
An entrepreneur and a community leader
Our moderator for the session was Kulsoom, a Meda former student of Varanasi and student of commerce at the Hindu University of Benares. Kulsoom has an e-commerce platform which aims to sell handmade products and oxidized jewelry in India. She shared how her family wanted her to pursue science after she got good grades in her 10th standard exams.
But, she resisted it and took up the business because she always wanted to be an entrepreneur. She knew the topic would help her. “The theme itself, Driven by Passion, is very close to my heart. I know that the challenges you face in pursuing your passion are immense. I would like to know how my fellow leaders were able to deal with it,” she shared.
Hayaat, a panelist from Delhi, is ccurrently working with Prava, a youth organization based in Delhi. She holds a graduate degree in English Literature. In addition to being a young development professional, she is also a published writer.
Hayaat currently manages Samjho Tohan experiential program that challenges intolerance and helps young people understand the perspectives of others, creating open spaces for dialogue.
“I wanted to be the engine of change. Working with young teens at Pravah to co-create systemic change, build and nurture their leadership made me realize how vital young community is,” she says.
Empower rural women, girls and youth
The second panelist of the session was Preeti. She works at Sajhe Sapne with young women in rural areas, ensuring they have the opportunities they need for a successful career. She chose the development sector as an experience, very early in her life (during her 12th standard).
She was selected as a “Youth Girl Icon” by the Milaan Foundation, only to realize that she wanted to work with women and girls. She then joined Sajhe Sapne As a student. And now she is working to change the lives of rural women across the country.
When asked what motivates her in her work, she mentioned that she wants to change the perspectives and norms that society has set for women.
She mentioned with a laugh how her loved ones tell her that, “Jab se tum kaam karne lag gayi ho tab se tumhara dimaag kharaab ho gaya hai (You haven’t thought properly since you started working).” This is because she is now questioning the norms at home.
Born and raised in a town in Uttar Pradesh, our third panelist, Rishabh, has always wanted to work to bring solutions to the challenges of rural India. He has done many community campaigns in different villages to support the livelihoods of young people, training them and sensitizing them to the local opportunities available to them.
A radio station run by HIV-positive people
Rishabh is a mechanical engineering graduate, but aspires to become a social entrepreneur. He wants to bring change and make the world a better place to live.
He is the founder of Anime Drivean organization that aims to properly use non-dairy cattle. Ashoka’s Young Changemakers program helped him expand his network and shape and structure his idea behind Anime Drive.
Apoorva, a masters student from Birmingham, was our fourth panelist at the conclave. She was introduced to the development sector by volunteering at a community radio station run by sex workers, transgender people and other community members.
Her job was to talk to mental health professionals, people with HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), survivors of domestic violence, and more. She was doing this to collect their stories and then air them on the community radio station.
One of his colleagues and friends introduced him LEAD Indiaa youth organization that helps next-generation professionals from various sectors become leaders.
She mentioned that LEAD India completely changed her. From a girl doing many things to help people and the community, it helped her get a sense of how one individual can make a “change” in society.
Volunteers checking medical trails during Covid-19
“During the peak of Covid-19 my family and I tested positive and struggled for beds and resources. I realized that this is the best time for young people to stand together for their communities. I approached Vidya, my mentor, and we started a campaign to help others, checking resource leads and directing those in need to them. From one to two, we slowly grew into a group of 48 people working together for the cause,” said Apoorva.
She added: “I know now that I have to start something that goes towards lasting change in the community.”
An undergraduate commerce student from Allahabad University, Manya, was our fifth and final panelist at the conclave. She always wanted to start something on her own and hated the idea of a 9 to 5 job. She decided to do baking, and has been for three or four years now.
“During Covid-19 I realized I could run my own bakery from home. I don’t sell cakes, I sell happiness,” says Manya about her business. She remembers being a shy girl who was hesitant to talk to strangers in front of her Meda training. She explained how she now handles multiple clients and customers on a daily basis.
Her bakery business is booming in Prayagraj and she plans to take it to the next level. Apart from her entrepreneurial background, Manya has also volunteered in Medha Ke Sipahi (the soldiers of Meda), an initiative of Meda alumni to help communities by providing verified resource leads during the peak of the second wave of Covid-19.