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Insights into a Youth Development Camp

Game On: Explore 5 Playful Pedagogical Approaches

A Youth Development camp was held for 100 Community Youth Leaders (CYLs), who volunteer to deliver our Thane programme in Maharashtra. The camp took place at our Magic Bus Learning Centre on the outskirts of Mumbai.

The primary objective of the camp was to allow our CYLs to focus on issues relating to youth development and career planning in a concerted and uninterrupted manner.

The topics covered over the 3 days included:

  • personal and social development
  • individual and group values
  • managing one’s strengths and weaknesses
  • various dynamics of leadership
  • career planning

The first four modules created a sense of self-awareness, a pre-requisite for the concluding topic of career planning.  The methods employed to help us reach this goal was not that of a lecture, but activity-based. This provided an impetus for the CYLs to express their ideas and understandings. The emphases of these activities were to allow the CYLs to vigorously debate the philosophies that resulted from the introspection drawn on the topics discussed.  Packed with interactive outdoor exercises and role plays the programme provides experiential learning on the challenges of leadership, prioritisation of values, and assessment of one’s strengths and weaknesses.

One could visibly note the behavioural change the CYLs went through over the three days. They learned to develop an inherent sense of responsibility, team spirit and understood what it takes to be a leader. They also further developed abilities of how to communicate effectively, think strategically and solve complex problems. The distinction in the responses provided by the CYLs in the pre- and post-assessment forms of the topics covered indicated maturity and understanding of the topics.

Recognising the importance of career planning, the CYLs formed area-specific youth committees. The objective of these youth committees is to create a grouping for the CYLs to collectively voice their career requirements and to create a sense of ownership of the youth development programme.

The youth development camp is an important step in allowing the CYLs to single-mindedly deliberate on their personal and professional growth. The ideas expressed by the CYLs formulate the core and direction for the Magic Bus’ Youth Development programme, ensuring orientation with their requirements.

  • If you'd like to know more about the Magic Bus programme, visit
  • To sponsor the training of a Magic Bus Community Youth Leader (CYL) to become a change-maker in a poor community, visit