India – YESS Forum 2022: Youth Empowerment for Sustainability and Social Impact

27 April 2022

(ANS – Bangalore) – The first launch of the YESS Forum was done on Earth Day on 22nd April 2022, at the Taj Westend, Bangalore. The YESS Forum unfolded innovative models and initiatives undertaken by “Bosconet – Don Bosco Network” partners, other non-profits, start-ups, CSR partners, academia, and other stakeholders in the areas of education, sustainable livelihoods, climate action, and gender justice.

YESS Forum conversation focused on various challenges that are faced by the youth today that require a comprehensive, intergenerational, and cross-sectoral approach, with the participation of non-profits, governments, corporate, youth, and all segments of society. The forum was organised and launched by Bosconet, inviting thought leaders in youth development to come together on one platform to identify impact-making interventions and to forge meaningful partnerships to set processes to create a sustainable future for youth.

Key Speakers were:

-      Shri Piyush Goyal, Honourable Minister of Textiles, Minister of Commerce and Industry, and Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, GOVT of India. Appreciating Don Bosco for empowering the young on the socio-economic periphery through education and skilling for the past 116 years and Bosconet for initiating this forum, he invited the YESS Forum to discuss the lessons taught by our forefathers on sustainable environment-friendly life which is cleaner, healthier and prosperous. Looking ahead to the next 25 years of nation-building we need to synergise on the development of youth with the focus on Education, Employment, Entrepreneurship, and Excellence.

-      Jean-Paul Muller, Economer General of the Salesian Order of Don Bosco, Rome; the Convener of the Change Congress of DB International stated that YESS FORUM take forward our services, our society become more qualitative striving towards the sustainability. Taking a leap from our effort in maximising alternative energy to a more sustainable society in caring for young people to become better citizens. 

-      Benoit Préfontaine, Consul General, Consulate General of Canada. He expressed that he is overwhelmed to be part of the launch of the YESS Forum initiated by Bosconet – Don Bosco Network. Stating that the focus areas that the YESS forum has chosen especially Climate action, Education, and skilling for livelihood are also the priority areas of Canada. He looks forward to greater collaboration in these areas and assured the support of the Canadian Consulate towards this initiative.

-      Fr. Noel Maddhichetty, Director, Don Bosco Network-South Asia, addressing the gathering focused on the world status of achievement of the SDGs. He stressed the fact that the GDP increase spurred by economic growth does not ensure social progress. The optimistic possibility to accelerate global social progress would be a conscious prioritisation of all the nations, to invest in education, health, and environment to upscale the quality and dignity of the lives of the people from the bottom of the pyramid of the society. He challenged all the stakeholders of youth development to network on the platform of YESS Forum to initiate synergetic partnerships for the sustainable future of youth. He also proposed that the future YESS fora should be anchored and hosted by youth leaders of Don Bosco and other networks, who can design and innovate solutions using technology to give access to quality education to all, skilling for sustainable livelihood, to prevent climate change and ascertain gender justice.

-      Santhanam, Assistant Director, Bosconet. He presented the overall focus areas of Bosconet and the reach of one million people annually in the five verticals of Education, skills training, empowerment of women and communities, caring for the earth, and responding to humanitarian emergencies. During Covid-19 the Don Bosco network reached out to 6.5 million across India.

The discussions from this forum opened new avenues for the actors in the development sector to incorporate proven models and innovative ideas in their interventions aimed at marginalized youth.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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