Empowering Bastar’s Youth: Yuvoday Celebrates Three Years of Impact

Empowering Bastar’s Youth: Yuvoday Celebrates Three Years of Impact

Jagdalpur, 23rd September 2023: Today marks a significant milestone for ‘Yuvoday,’ a youth volunteer program launched in collaboration between the Bastar District Administration and UNICEF. Over the past three years, Yuvoday has risen as a powerful symbol of volunteerism, engaging 7,557 dedicated volunteers across a diverse range of sectors, from COVID response to education, health, nutrition, environment, livelihood, culture, sports, and mental health.

Job Zachariah, Chief UNICEF Chhattisgarh, enthusiastically noted, “Yuvoday is a path-breaking initiative that has grown to be synonymous with youth energy. It has become a beacon of social development through community involvement. Yuvoday has inspired volunteerism across Chhattisgarh and inculcated a spirit of selfless service amongst the youth. UNICEF is proud to be a part of the Yuvoday family and congratulates them for three years of commendable service.”

Since its inception on 23rd September 2020, Yuvoday has transitioned into a closely-knit community, with volunteers actively involved in every gram panchayat and urban area in Bastar. Their unwavering dedication has touched the lives of 13,77,375 individuals residing in 624 villages across Bastar, providing vital support and services.

Banmali Tiwari, a Yuvoday Volunteer, expressed his appreciation for the program, emphasizing the valuable training and knowledge-sharing opportunities it has offered within his village.

Yuvoday’s impact is underscored by remarkable statistics: 4,32,105 individuals encouraged to receive COVID-19 vaccinations, 15,439 pregnant women vaccinated, 2,164 malnourished children admitted to NRC, 30,530 people educated on proper handwashing practices, 14,504 women and girls informed about menstrual hygiene, 14,504 new mothers educated on correct breastfeeding practices, and 33,751 people registered for Ayushman cards.

Today, Yuvoday has expanded its reach to encompass seven districts, including Bastar, Kondagaon, Bijapur, Durg, Janjgir, Kawardha, and Jashpur.

Abhishek Singh, UNICEF’s Specialist in Social & Behavior Change, commended Yuvoday’s remarkable journey, declaring, “Yuvoday stands as a testament to the incredible potential of youth-driven change. Their unwavering dedication has brought about significant positive changes in Bastar. UNICEF remains steadfast in its commitment to support and nurture this inspiring initiative. It gained global recognition when presented at the International SBCC Summit held in December last year in Marrakech, Morocco, and was hailed by the global community for its achievements.”

This year’s third-anniversary celebration of Yuvoday receives generous support from local merchants, artists, youth, civil society organizations, and the government, further testament to the program’s impact and recognition.

Maad Sandesh

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