In 2015 YouthLink was formed after the AV retreat. During this retreat a survey among the youth had been conducted because of the alarming statement of the number of youth staying in Auroville. The survey revealed the reasons for this lack of young generation in Auroville.
The following topics were covered : Housing, Higher education and Job opportunities.
Based on this, the members of youthlink have since then constantly tried to meet these needs by developing curriculum, trainings, career counselling, supporting projects and gathering information about the work opportunities in Auroville.
When a new team was formed in 2021, with a very diverse and motivated group of young peers, we realised after sharing a lot of great and valuable ideas, that we lacked some basic skills to move a project from ideation to action. But because we are always motivated and not easily discouraged, we managed to follow through with each project, learning through mistakes and readapting the process and team dynamics. After having the chance to explore with no limits or structure given, we decided to implement team learning and development, for the ones that take part of the organisation.
The initial thought was to provide the team with soft skills and technical skills needed for the organisation to function and to create a healthy environment.
One of the main learnings was around project management, since Youthlink is always working with new projects, we looked for facilitators willing to offer short courses to the team.
We approached Pranjal, an expert project manager, and asked him to design a pilot short course with us. With the team as participants, we had a 3 day workshop.
We all had to choose a personal project, and with the tools provided by Pranjal we started by the ideation phase, and learned how to move step by step to activation, tracking tasks and deadlines with excel tools. We had a test phase, valuation and adjustment, end of the project, and self valuation.
We all learned how important it is to have a self organised structure, and an organised mind, to be able to follow through each step.
Many of us started appling what we’ve learned, by initiating projects within YouthLink.
I'm happy to see the progress we've gone through, starting by taking small projects, to bigger ones, including collaborations with multiple other organisations.
We really value the empowerment given by the organisation to the team members, supporting our growth and intentions. And we aspire to help more young peers, motivated to generate ideas and projects within the Auroville community, by providing possibilities to learn skills base workshops, including communication skills, facilitation, and self assessment.
Last but not least, what we really focus on during our learnings, is the human interaction, how to provide a safe and empowering environment for everyone working with us exploring new projects, without fear of failure, but instead learning through failure with a minimum loss.
Writen By Lucrezia