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NIRMAN Youth Flourishing Framework

NIRMAN Youth Flourishing Framework

Youth / Emerging Adults (18 - 29 years) comprise of 22% of India's population, which is more than 261 million people. India's youth demographic is larger than the entire population of Pakistan! Capitalizing on this demographic dividend is absolutely critical for India as these young people are going to be the face, force and future of the country.

Unfortunately, not enough is being done to nurture the youth. Apart from the fact that we don't have many robust interventions targeted at grooming the youth, a major problem is that India does not even have a theory or framework about the healthy growth of this group.What do we mean by a flourishing youth? What are the various aspects to it? How would we know one when we see one?

In the absence of any solid framework related to their flourishing only the more visible and easily measurable markers like numbers on a mark sheet, having a job, salary, a house, etc. take precedence and qualify as the parameters on which to assess how well young people are doing in their lives.

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While these factors are also important, they are by no means complete. What could be the other elements and features of knowing if a young person is really doing well in her/his life, to know if s/he is flourishing and is in an optimal state of well-being? Without a sound theoretical framework neither is a nuanced understanding possible nor are effective interventions conceivable. Approaching youth development beyond the conversations around suicide, unemployment, road traffic accidents, sexual assault, alcoholand drug abuse, we at NIRMAN have developed a comprehensive and first of its kind Framework of Youth Flourishing for India's young generation.

Main Domains Image

This framework is based on our observations and learning from active engagement with thousands of youth over the last 14 years and utilizes key aspects of scientific literature on emerging adulthood and positive psychology. The framework has an expansive scope and consists of 50 diverse items classified in 7 major domains.

The main domains include:

  1. Physical Health
  2. Psychological Well-Being
  3. Character Development
  4. Social Relationships
  5. Professional Development
  6. Life Skills
  7. Social Contribution

Each of these domains consists of parameters that are important and relevant from the perspective of overall well-being of young people and substantiated by our own experience and the science of youth development.

We have broadly 4 types of audiences in our mind who might find this framework useful:

Youth

themselves can now have a solid road map to look at, assess and chart their own growth plan in this light. They should feel empowered to take charge of their flourishing along the various facets.

Practitioners of youth development

may want to see where do their existing interventions fit in and create new interventions pertaining to other aspects of the framework that they find important.

Academicians and Policymakers

may want to debate, discuss various facets of this framework, add to it, conduct research on specific aspects of it, and include some of these in the literature and policies revolving around the youth in India.

Any conscious Indian citizen who engages with the youth

whether as a parent, an uncle or aunt, an elder sibling, a team leader or a boss, a teacher, a friend or a life partner, can make use of this framework to contribute in any possible way towards the development of the young people who come in one's contact.

We look forward to a future where young people's growth and progress in life is gauged and facilitated, by themselves and others, on such a diverse landscape of flourishing and does not remain restricted to exam scores, package figures, vehicles owned and square feet of purchased property.

Absence of mental or physical illness does not automatically mean presence of good health. It merely means that we are not on the negative side of the axis but at the zero point. There are myriad possibilities of growing on the positive side of the axis. We hope this framework will serve as a useful guide in this exciting journey! Flourishing Youth will be a real marker of a Flourishing India!