Lead change within the country with the Counter Speech Fellowship programme launched by the Young Leaders for Active Citizenship (YLAC), in collaboration with Instagram. The fellowship engages creative and artistically inclined teenagers to use the power of visual storytelling to lead change.
Launched in 2017, the fellowship is looking for 30 teenagers in Kolkata to use art as a medium to start meaningful conversations on issues important to young citizens across the world. It is a two-month long, fully funded engagement that will take place on alternate weekends for 3-4 hours in the city. Fellows will be mentored to build powerful, thought-provoking content that will be promoted on Instagram.
Founded by Harvard and Oxford alumni in 2016, the YLAC aims to encourage youngsters to understand and critically think about their socio-political construct, participate in the democratic process and lead change within the country. The idea is to use social media to create communities around issues that matter and provide a platform for youngsters voice their concerns thereby creating a more inclusive and tolerant world.
The themes for the 2019 fellowship are: Bullying, Diversity, Mental Wellbeing, Body Positivity, Gender Equality and Sustainability. The fellowship will run in seven cities in 2019 – six in India (Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Guwahati) and one in Nepal (Kathmandu). Applications for the first phase of the fellowship (Kathmandu, Hyderabad, Guwahati and Kolkata) are now open.
The schedule and details about the selection process are available on their website. The deadline for applications is May 19, while the interviews will be conducted on June 8.
Their work is guided by their Board of Advisors, which include Dr. Shashi Tharoor (Member of Parliament, India), Mr. Baijayant Panda (Former Member of Parliament, India) and Prof. Michael Walton (Harvard University).