YUVA, a dynamic unit of the HSS (Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh Australia Inc) youth program, has identified the need for a platform, where university students come together to help each other to become role models for their communities.
The second such YUVA Annual Camp was held between 18 and 20 July 2014, wherein 31 students from over nine universities spread out across four cities in two countries participated. These cities included Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland. During all the activities the participants shared a common outlook, however their individual point of views added value to their ability to overcome challenges.
The three-day camp focused on three pillars. These included SEVA, mentoring and learning through physical activities and games. The three pillars covered all the essential aspects required in a university student.
They also gave the students a perspective of the ‘real world’. Each activity was focused on pushing the limits of physical and intellectual boundaries that the students believed they possessed.
SEVA or Service is a universal concept that encourages the idea of giving more than what we take. This was well received by all the students who identified the mind-set to serve without any expectations, as something that needs to be included in their everyday lives. Learning through physical activities is the perfect way to condition a mind to turn behavior into beliefs. These activities enhanced team-building and public speaking skills thus pushing the students to actively overcome their fears. The participants were also introduced to traditional Indian sports like kabaddi and kho-kho.
The everyday schedule began at 6am and finished at around 11.30pm. Prayer, yoga, team games, discussion, workshops, lectures, gharba and quiz formed part of the camp activities planned.
The camp concluded with the participants deciding about the future programs and the need to meet consistently to sustain the momentum developed.
Participants were served with different varieties of tasty vegetarian food. All members were presented with a copy of the Bhagavad Geeta.
Overall this was a unique camp that challenged participants to step out of their comfort zones, work with the team, and enhance discipline without sacrificing the fun-aspect at every given opportunity.