By Pri Kumar
I believe that as a part of today’s youth, living in 2016, more than ever we have the opportunity to take a stance in what we stand for and to create a platform for ourselves. Mentorship and guidance along with social media when combined together create an innovative start for adolescences’ ventures.
From prior experience on hosting my own Charity Fashion Show, the age of 14 without any prior experience, the tips above are what I believe helped me to hold a successful event. It really does show that with the utilisation of the tools and support of people who surround you the impact of your cause can be great, which I saw in the outcome of the project as my team and I raised over $5,000. In recognition of this in 2015 I also won the Young Citizen of the Year Award.
Two very powerful words in our society today are, Social Media. Although easily undermined by teenagers as just a platform for sharing information about one’s personal life. Sites like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram are much more than that. They give youth the opportunity to share their visions and create a globally recognized platform for their venture’s, which they are able to use as a tool to advocate their cause. However, the regularity of these sites due to their easy access causes often youngsters to foresee the extent for their power. Social Media enables individuals to reach who and what ever they want, simply by the click of a button. In order to maximise the potential of youth’s reach, being able to utilise the power of social media is necessary.
I found that through hosting my Charity Fashion Show, the power of social media really came through in effectively advertising the event whilst also engaging people with the cause directly.
One thing that is commonly seen behind a successful individual is a strong support system surrounding them, as youth should have with the assistance of a mentor. Mentor’s for youth play a critical part in innovation and growth through providing their guidance, wisdom, knowledge, skills and expertise allowing youngsters to become confident and further learn and develop their skills.
However, it is a collaborative learning experience where both Mentors and youth work in partnership to get the best outcome. For youth, mentorship also provides honest assessment of their strengths, weaknesses, and development needs which assists them with further growth.
It is essential to understand that an important learning point of the relationship in being able to move forward and always ask questions. It works as a learning tool, providing you with information and guidance even if it may not be applicable to you at the time; you will never know when it will come in hand. As at the end of the day a successful person isn’t born they are made, through hard work, dedication, guidance and support.
I believe that two of the most influential mentors for me so far have been my Mum and Mrs. Kiran Muzumdar-Shaw, the CEO of BIOCON, India.
From a young age, my mother has always been a powerful figure in my life teaching me that hard work is the key to success. I believe that her endless support and guidance in what I do really does push me to do better and challenge myself.
I was invited by DFAT and Biocon to attend a dinner that was held for Mrs. Muzumdar-Shaw, I was able to connect with her and learn from her past experiences. One very influential piece of advice that she gave to me was in her response to when I asked if her 15-year-old self ever believed that she could get to where she is today. The response was, no. However, she said life is a very evolutionary journey and although you cannot predict what you are going to be in the future you can most certainly choose pathways that will direct you to where you want to go.
Always learn from your mentors through asking questions, use social media to promote/share your vision and NEVER give up!
Pri Kumar is a year 11 student from Western Sydney with a vision as per her own words “I’m not just a teenager who wants to make a change, I am a teenager who will make a change and encourage others to do the same with support and guidance.” Pri Kumar after visiting an orphanage in Fiji and spending some time with the children there organised a fashion show fund raiser at the age of 14. Pri Kumar won a Certificate of Appreciation and the “Young Citizen of the Year for 2015″ during the Australia Day celebrations last year.