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INTRODUCTION

 ILAMAI (YOUTHFULNESS) is a Youth Research, Resources and Renewal Centre. It is an epicenter where the youth can recharge themselves in all dimensions of life – Personal, Psychological, Intellectual, Sociological and Spiritual. It is a well spring to all those who are associated with the young and are personally interested in their welfare – Researchers, Educationists, Animators, Organizers, Policy Makers and Parents etc, to know, to understand, to appreciate and to assist the youth.

It is a cauldron, where numerous activities, innovative ideas, in-depth studies, inclusive strategies, realistic actions and effective evaluations,  are churned out for the well being and better living of the young.

It is a specific response to the emerging needs of youth of today and the rising challenges of the future generation of our society.

It is an initiative by the Salesians of Don Bosco in Tamilnadu who are committed to the cause and welfare of the young for the last 156 years all over the world and for 109 years in particular, in the state of Tamilnadu, India.

OUR INSIGNIA

The Emblem of Ilamai, i.e., “Together with the young towards a better World” refers to our mission ‘with’ the young ‘for’ the betterment of the universe.

The images of youngsters in the emblem refer to Togetherness, Distinction in Quality, Unity in Diversity, Fortitude, Team Work and Collaboration and a desire to outstand with an urge to commit them genuinely in order to fabricate a better society by knowing, growing and glowing.

The ‘Globe’ at the center referring to the Asian Continent is a clear sign of indicating our ‘Mother Nation’.

As a whole, ‘ILAMAI’ refers to ‘Youthfulness’ all around the world. ‘db’ is an assertion that Ilamai is a non-profit Youth Organization, led by the Salesians of Don Bosco. It is a unit of The Trichy Don Bosco Society.

OUR GENESIS

St. John Bosco was born in Turin, Italy in the year 1815. When he was two years old, his father died. This future saint, raised by his mother, experienced the pains of poverty at a very young age. John’s future work was inspired by a dream he had at the age of nine. He wanted to become a Priest, especially to assist youth. In order to pursue his dream, John had to leave home at a young age to join the city school. Being bigger than his classmates, he was often the object of much ridicule. After schooling, he worked as a tailor, cobbler and a waiter, often studying with the help of candle light at night. On completing his education he began his ecclesiastical studies to become a priest.

He was ordained a priest at the age of twenty-six. He was then called Don [Father] Bosco. He immediately began his work for the orphans. He opened a hospice for boys where his mother served as the housekeeper. He not only fed the homeless boys whom he took in but also provided them with opportunities for livelihood skills. He spent long hours teaching them to read and write. He also taught them tailoring and shoemaking and quickly set up a printing press. Above all, he created a family atmosphere of trust and caring. Those who helped him were amazed at the transformation in several youngsters.

The greatest gift that Don Bosco has left posterity is his unique way of educating – a method that was inspired by his one magnificent obsession: “It is enough to know that you are young and abandoned for me to love you very much”. More than a century after the death of Don Bosco, thousands of people have dedicated themselves to the continuation of his apostolic love for young people all over the world. Their mission is to be “signs and bearers of God’s love to the young.”

The “Salesians of Don Bosco” is an International Society founded by Don Bosco. Catholic Priests and Brothers, who are members of the Society, work for the development and education of the young especially those most at risk.

OUR VISION & MISSION

 Vision

Able and noble youth for an empowered and enriched human society

Mission

To develop into an integral centre for Growth, Development, Promotion and Empowerment of Youth and related activities that attends to every need of the youth of the society through scientific and Futuristic Research, Materialistic and Intellectual Resourcefulness and Renewal of self towards an Egalitarian, Enlightened and Enhanced life of the Human Society.

VALUES AT THE CORE OF YOUTH WORK

The following values and principles are those which distinguish youth work from other, sometimes related, activities involving young people. These values and Principles are at the core of the work undertaken:

  • Young people choose to be involved, not least because they want to relax, meet friends, make new relationships, to have fun, and to find support.
  • The work starts from where young people are in relation to their own values, views and principles, as well as their own personal and social space.
  • It seeks to go beyond where young people start, to widen their horizons, promote participation and invite social commitment, in particular by encouraging them to be critical and creative in their responses to their experience and the world around them.
  • It treats young people with respect, valuing each individual and their differences, and promoting the acceptance and understanding of others, whilst challenging oppressive behaviour and ideas.
  • It respects and values individual differences by supporting and strengthening young people’s belief in themselves, and their capacity to grow and to change through a supportive group environment.
  • It is underpinned by the principles of equity, diversity and interdependence.
  • It recognizes, respects and is actively responsive to the wider networks of peers, communities, families and cultures which are important to young people, and through these networks seeks to help young people to achieve stronger relationships and collective identities, through the promotion of inclusivity.
  • It works in partnership with young people and other agencies which contribute to young people’s social, educational and personal development.
  • It is concerned with how young people feel, and not just with what they know and can do.
  • It is concerned with facilitating and empowering the voice of young people, encouraging and enabling them to influence the environment in which they live.
  • It recognizes the young person as a partner in a learning process, complementing formal education, promoting their access to learning opportunities which enable them to fulfill their potential.
  • It safeguards the welfare of young people, and provides them with a safe environment in which to explore their values, beliefs, ideas and issues.

 PRINCIPLES OF YOUTH WORK

 Preparing Young People for Participation

Shown by:

 Recognizing and nurturing the strengths, abilities and interests of young people

  • Young people expecting to have a say and to be involved
  • Young people working in partnership with adults in decision-making
  • Meaningful participation
  • Young people having a range of opportunities to get involved in decision-making in a way they choose (voluntary participation)
  • Adults believing in and willing to engage with young people
  • Young people having the opportunity to progress in their decision-making in and beyond their youth work setting

Promoting Acceptance and Understanding of Others

Shown by:

  • Creating a friendly and welcoming atmosphere for young people, staff and the wider community
  • Communicating clear messages e.g. signs and leaflets that encourage a wide range of people to get involved
  • An outreach service to those not involved
  • Being proactive – don’t wait for young people who find it difficult to get involved/are excluded to come to you
  • Staff and young people using respectful language, demonstrating positive attitudes and behavior
  • Staff and young people demonstrating ease with difference and difficult conversations
  • Providing training and support for staff and young people

Testing and Exploring Values and Beliefs

Shown by:

  • Young people having the opportunity to explore their own values and beliefs
  • Young people making informed choices
  • Young people’s attitudes, opinions and beliefs being valued
  • An open and welcoming environment
  • Young people’s values and beliefs being explored and challenged in a non-threatening way
  • Young people having an awareness of their personal feelings and the consequences of their behavior and actions
  • Young people being able to change their values and beliefs as a result of exploration

 OUR APPROACH

 What We Do?

 We offer substantial, sustained and supportive service primarily to the young and to those who are at the service of the young.

To the youth it offers

  • Direction & orientation to life and career
  • Education & Healthy Recreation
  • Training on employable skills
  • Space & Study materials
  • Programs on Life Scoping Skills
  • Psychological & Medical Assistance &counseling
  • Spiritual & personal empowerment programs
  • Platform and a Forum for self growth
  • Connectivity with other youth organizations
  • Mobile assistance and assistance through Mobile phones and online

To the Youth Animators it offers

  • Training in animation and ministering to the young
  • Resourceful study materials
  • Up gradation & ongoing formation
  • Diploma courses & Assistance
  • Literature & data on youth
  • Provisions to understand the youth and their world
  • Existing Trends and traits in ministering to the young
  • Collegium of Youth animators

To the Researchers & Media

  • Literature & current data on Youth
  • View & opinions of the young on issues & events
  • Networking with various other platforms
  • Professional assistance for Researches & assessments

OUR IMPACT

 As a Research Centre

  • To initiate researches, surveys, fact findings, Media reports on the youth situation in the state and the country
  • To constantly expose the youth power with its varied elements for better social utilization
  • To air opinions, ideologies, critique of the youth, on society and its various sectors
  • To publish data, findings, papers, stories and facts periodically

 As a Resource Centre

  • To function as Resource Agency on youth for the society and various groups
  • To document all available data on the youth of a state in particular and Nation and the world at large
  • To network with other centres of similar nature to initiate e-sharing based on e-governance
  • To assist researchers, youth animators, policy makers to have access to the mind and the life of the young
  • To project the young as a power that can efficiently contribute and not something to be dispensed with
  • To assist firms, organizations, institutes, government with studies on/about/with/for the young

As a Training Centre for Youth Animators

  • To form and prepare the willing hands and hearts for ministry with the young
  • To provide constant updating on the progress and changes that affects the world of the young
  • To impart newer skills and traits for effective youth ministry

 As a Capacity Enhancement Centre for Youth

  • To be a welcoming home for the young and offer them healthy recreation and entertainment facilities
  • To assist the young to realize and discover themselves and their potentials
  • To be of service to the young who are challenged by life and its veritable especially in times of need and crisis

GET INVOLVED 

AREAS OF ALLIANCE

 Areas of Association

The youngsters, who are poor and marginalized, face a lot of challenges and the resources are too few. We want to be included with you in transforming their lives and the future of every generation.

We (ILAMAI) welcome all the possible opportunities to work in partnership with all compatible organizations and support collaborations that unswervingly excite the youngsters to hope and dream. We work with an array of associates to achieve our Vision which include the nonprofits, business houses, and governments.

Funding Partner

The well-suited Commercial Houses / Government Sectors will be the partner with Ilamai for carrying out any project by providing the financial grant and also supporting in basing up and running training programs for the poor and marginalized youth of the Southern parts of Tamil Nadu.

OUR PARTNERS 

  1. Nehru Yuva Kendras

 Nehru Yuva Kendras were established in the year 1972 with the objective of providing rural youth avenues to take part in the process of nation building as well providing opportunities for the development of their personality and skills.

In the year 1987-88, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) was set up as an autonomous organization under the Government of India, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, to oversee working of these Kendras. NYKS is the largest grassroots level voluntary organization; one of its kind in the world. It channelizes the power of youth who are in the age group of 13-35 years on the principles of voluntarism, self-help and community participation.

Over the years, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan has established a network of youth clubs in villages, where Nehru Yuva Kendras have been set up. NYKS has targeted to identify areas of harnessing youth power for development by forming Youth Clubs, which are village level voluntary action groups of youth at the grassroots level to involve them in nation building activities. The core strength of NYKS lies in its network of youth clubs. Youth Clubs are village based organizations working for community development and youth 
empowerment.

Youth Clubs are composed of youth members ranging between the age group of 13-35 years. The basic objective for creation of youth clubs is to render community support through developmental initiatives involving activities with particular focus on youth empowerment. The implementation of program and activities of youth clubs is based on local needs and requirements by mobilizing resources from various government departments and other agencies, which include both national, State level and multilateral institutions. The youth clubs and its member volunteers form the base of the NYKS’s vast national rural network. 

  1. Don Bosco Vazhikaatti, Trichy

 Don Bosco Vazhikaatti (Career Guidance and Job Placement Center) takes its root from the Salesian Society of Don Bosco, which is an international organization working for the cause of underprivileged, abandoned children and poor rural youth across the world without any discrimination of caste, creed, and culture. Working with them for many years helped us to understand better the educational, socio- economic, political and cultural scenario of the youth in Southern Tamilnadu and the urgency to empower them to become self reliant. To replicate the vision of Don Bosco for the young in the Southern Districts of Tamilnadu and to work for their integral development, a center for career guidance and job placement was established on 15th August 2002 under the umbrella of Don Bosco Vazhikaatti to create an awareness among the rural youth on the available job opportunity in the Government, private, self employment sector and career oriented services. After having worked for nearly six years in the field of career guidance and job placement and realizing the growth of the organization and the need of extending our service to the underprivileged rural youth it has been registered as an independent society on 16th February 2009 under The Tamilnadu Societies Registration Act, 1975(TN Reg. No. 39/ 2009: 16/02/2009).

  1. Don Bosco Media

Don Bosco Media is a centre for art, media, and communication in Trichy, Tamilnadu, India. We prepare young people to live in a world of powerful images, words, sounds, and objects. We have realized the value of media literacy and the power of visual medium and art in the development of a society. We are building a media village that is equipped with higher-end technology, knowledge, and skills to empower young minds with a best of education in media and art in the world. We produce documentaries, promotional ads, films, short films, TV programs portfolio, albums, 3D Printing, 3D murals, paintings, statues, interior designing, event management, product shoot, virtual gallery, choreography, make-up, brochures, books, music, jingles, marketing, and photography.

DIFFERENT MODELS OF YOUTH SERVICES  

  1. INSTITUTIONAL MODEL 

Under this model, we form the youth group with those who receive the academic education in our institutions. Here though our aim is to gather all the students in groups but practical difficulties hinder us in achieving it. Hence we form groups according to the interests of the young people (Eg: Study groups, Sports groups, Arts groups, etc) and through them we reach out to the entire institute. This group is a floating group.

This model covers up the following institutes:

  • Pastor Lenson Polytechnic College –           Kuthenkuzhi
  • Don Bosco Polytechnic College –           Kazhiappanallur
  • Don Bosco College of Arts & Science – KeelaEral
  • Don Bosco I.T.I –           Madurai
  • Don Bosco I.T.I –           AMSAM, Trichy
  • Don Bosco I.T.I –           Lalgudi
  1. RURAL MODEL 

Under this model we reach out to the unorganized rural youth. Here we reach out to individual village and form youth groups in each village. The youth who are members of the youth group take up the leadership of reaching out to other youth who have migrated for works from their village and the others who keep themselves away from social issues. They are formed both for personal and community development. They remain as the real target group of our mission.

This model covers up the following institutes:

  • VEMBU –           Vilathikulam
  • DON BOSCO –           KeelaEral
  • VIDIVELLI –           Kalavasal, Alangulam
  • SARAL –           Nettur
  • SAYAL –           Sayalgudi
  1. PARISH MODEL

 Under this model we cater to the catholic youth of the parish. Though there may be a good number youth but we form the youth group with the interested and reach out to all with the interested youth. Here we cater to the personal, social and parish development.

This model covers up the following institutes:

  • Theresa’s Church –           Therespuram
  • Antony’s Church –           Vilathikulam
  • Sebastian’s Church –           KeelaEral
  • Our Lady of Lourdes Church –           Madurai
  • Mary Help of Christians Church –           Pallithammam
  • Francis Xavier’s Church –           Saveriyarpalayam
  • Mary Help of All People Church –           AMSAM, Trichy
  • Mary Help of Christians Church –           Lalgudi
  • MHC & Our Lady of Lourdes Church –           Madhakottai
  1. YaR MODEL

 This model is similar to rural model. Here we cater to the youth living in slums and brought up in Anbu Illam set up.  Here the main focus will be the empowerment (at the personal level) of the youth themselves.

This model covers up the following institutes:

  • Don Bosco AnbuIllam –           Salem
  • Don Bosco AnbuIllam –           Coimbatore
  • Don Bosco Care Home –           Moolakadu
  • Don Bosco AnbuIllam –           Namakkal
  • NEST                              –           Tiruppur