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Youth Empowerment Forum Magazine Vol1 Issue1

Hello everyone! Welcome to the first issue of the Youth Empowerment Forum Magazine! We are delighted to introduce our newest chapter regarding important experiences of our newly founded organization, Youth Empowerment Forum, or YEF. This issue will take you back to the beginning of our journey, and introduce the process of different events/ classes given by the youth. Here, we will highlight all the wonderful experiences of YEF members, and express the importance of our gratitude to everyone. YEF believes in “Youth Empowering Youth”, so come along and join us as we unravel the secrets that have been kept hidden throughout our whole journey. We sincerely hope you enjoy YEF Magazine’s first issue, as much as we loved writing these articles! Make sure to leave positive feedback and share with all your friends and family!

Hello everyone!

Welcome to the first issue of the Youth Empowerment Forum Magazine! We are delighted to introduce our newest chapter regarding important experiences of our newly founded organization, Youth Empowerment Forum, or YEF. This issue will take you back to the beginning of our journey, and introduce the process of different events/ classes given by the youth. Here, we will highlight all the wonderful experiences of YEF members, and express the importance of our gratitude to everyone. YEF believes in “Youth Empowering Youth”, so come along and join us as we unravel the secrets that have been kept hidden throughout our whole journey.

We sincerely hope you enjoy YEF Magazine’s first issue, as much as we loved writing these articles! Make sure to leave positive feedback and share with all your friends and family!

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youth

E M P O W E R M E N T F O R U M

MAGAZINE

VOL-1 | ISSUE-1

HOW WAS THE YOUTH

EMPOWERMENT FORUM

FOUNDED?

LEARN CREATIVE AND

CONTENT WRITING SKILLS

ROBOTS ARE THE

FUTURE OF THE WORLD

ENGAGING KIDS IN THE

SUMMER IN ARIZONA

1

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

FB.COM/YEFUS | WEFUS.ORG/YEF


WHAT WE DO

WHAT WE DO:

YEF is an organization led by teens for teens. Its goals are to create

a strong support system for the youth for life, cultivate meaningful

volunteer opportunities, and educate teens on essential topics such

as health, social issues, culture, etc.

THANK YOU:

M.D. Arnold once said, “A good leader leads the people from above

them. A great leader leads the people from within them.” This is what

YEF mentors— Shyam Byra, Lalitha Byra, Prabath, Manju, and the

Wishesh Team- mean to us, leaders that have shown us the way to

become leaders ourselves and helped us from behind-the-scenes! The

YEF team would like to thank them and our parents for supporting

us in this transformational leadership journey. Our parents have

become an integral part to spreading the YEF organization’s impact

through donating money and supporting our actions like summer

classes and various other activities. The money from these events has

allowed YEF to provide education to children in rural and tribal areas.

We have come a long way because of our fellow mentors’ blessful

guidance and our parents’ generous input. We have prospered as

leaders and as humans.

Thank you! - YEF Team

- Kashvi and Himaja

YEF Members

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

2


Editor Note

Hello everyone!

Welcome to the first issue of the Youth

Empowerment Forum Magazine! We are delighted

to introduce our newest chapter regarding

important experiences of our newly founded

organization, Youth Empowerment Forum, or

YEF. This issue will take you back to the beginning

of our journey, and introduce the process of

different events/ classes given by the youth. Here,

we will highlight all the wonderful experiences

of YEF members, and express the importance of

our gratitude to everyone. YEF believes in “Youth

Empowering Youth”, so come along and join us

as we unravel the secrets that have been kept

hidden throughout our whole journey.

We sincerely hope you enjoy YEF Magazine’s first

issue, as much as we loved writing these articles!

Make sure to leave positive feedback and share

with all your friends and family!

Special thanks to contributors, our

advertisers and readers for making this

magazine possible.

PUBLICATION BROUGHT TO YOU BY

Wishesh Digital Media Pvt. Ltd.

Plot No:31A, Nagarjuna Hills

Panjagutta, Hyderabad, T.S. India - 500 082

Ph: 040 - 23352804

info@wishesh.net

www.wishesh.net

EDITOR IN CHIEF

Shreya Kadiyala

HONORARY REVIEWER

Shreya Kadiyala

DIGITAL DESIGNER

Sidhu

COORDINATORS

Shreya Kadiyala,

Aashi Hemdev

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Aashi Hemdev, Aarush Reddy, Garima

Harlalka, Himaja Jonnakuti, Kashvi

Gupta, Sriniketh Ganti, Sarayu Nippani,

Shreya Kadiyala

TO CONTRIBUTE /

ADVERTISE / BACK ISSUES

& ENQUIRIES,

CONTACT

Shreya Kadiyala

yef@wefus.org

Special thanks to

contributors, our

advertisers and readers

for making this magazine

possible.

3

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF MAGAZINE VOL 1 | ISSUE 1

CONTENTS

06

HOW WAS THE YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM FOUNDED?

08

SHREYA KADIYALA CO-FOUNDER’S YEF EXPERIENCE

10

YEF ORGANIZATION

12

JOURNEY OF YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM

20

YEF MUSIC FUNDAMENTALS CLASS

26

ROBOTS ARE THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD

30

COOKING & HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

34

CONTENT AND CREATIVE WRITING

38

GENETICS COURSE

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

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06

08

10 20

30

5

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF HISTORY

How was the

YOUTH

EMPOWERMENT FORUM

Founded?

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

6


YEF is a

non-profit

organization

led by teens for

all youth

YEF does this through various

methods including but not

limited to volunteering and

fundraising.

YEF is a subsidiary of the

Women’s Empowerment

Forum (WEF). The WEF is an

organization in Phoenix, AZ

that advocates and empowers

women. They accomplish

this goal through programs

that give them skills and

instill inner strength so they

can take on the world. They

also promote networking,

economic independence,

gender equality, leadership

training, career guidance,

social empowerment, and

trauma relief. They are aligned

with the UN’s women and its

17 sustainable Development

Goals.

The forum was founded

by two siblings Shreya

Kadiyala and Suhas Kadiyala

in May’2020. The two saw

that many kids were wasting

their time away in quarantine

instead of using this valuable

time in productive ways. They

both wanted to stop this and

decided to materialize their

want with the founding of the

Youth Empowerment Forum

(YEF). Ensuring youth spent

time on valuable activities

instead of wasting their time

away, during quarantine,

led to the foundation of the

group. YEF originally was

an organization founded to

provide an opportunity for

youth to learn new skills

during quarantine.

With the aim to foster talent

for the future, Shreya, Suhas

and other members of YEF

reached out to mentors

and community leaders to

help the cause. Shyam Byra,

Lalitha Byra, Prabath, Manju,

Women’s Empowerment

Foundation, and Wishesh

team. They supported YEF

with guidance, leadership,

mentorship, and resources.

During the summer of 2020,

YEF kicked off and was

beginning to be noticed. Kids

started joining the club and

attending the sessions YEF

held. After quarantine ended,

they still pursued their goal,

and the forum stands strong

today continuing their motto

of kids empowering kids.

- Aarush

YEF Member

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YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


CO-FOUNDER’S YEF EXPERIENCE

Shreya Kadiyala

Co-Founder’s YEF Experience

Everywhere I go, people are always asking me what is YEF?

How did it start? How does it help the world? Well, to be

honest, when I first joined I really couldn’t quite reach

the answer either. But what I do know now, is that this

organization has taught me a lot of things that I was never

really prepared for in life.

My name is Shreya Kadiyala,

and I am a 16-year-old

Sophomore at Desert

Mountain High School. I was

born in Phoenix, Arizona but

have always loved to travel

and visit new places. I love to

bake and cook and am always

looking for new opportunities

to expand my culinary skills. I

also learn an Indian classical

dance called Bharatanatyam

and have recently started

learning how to play the

guitar. But enough about me,

instead I want to share with

you guys my experience in

YEF.

YEF stands for Youth

Empowerment Forum. It is

a non-profit organization

led by teens in Arizona for

kids and teens worldwide.

We are an initiative under

WEF, Women Empowerment

Foundation, and have grown

to become our organization

with the help of many mentors

who have been guiding us

along the way. I am very

grateful to them and all the

other adults that have put in

their time to help YEF become

the success that it is today.

Throughout the whole world,

everyone is going through

hard times because of the

coronavirus that has struck

this Earth. Many schools and

offices have been forced to

close down and continue

online, and many people have

become unemployed due to

this pandemic. Everyone in the

world has been in quarantine,

and they are all going crazy

because they are not allowed

to leave their homes. And

this is how the idea of YEF

began. A couple of my friends

and I were discussing some

activities we would like to

do over the summer, mostly

online things. We began to

propose our ideas, and we

created a list of activities we

would try and organize for the

public to participate in. Before

we became an organization,

we just called them “summer

activities”. We would have

one or two meetings almost

every week to discuss these

activities and to establish the

next steps that we had to take

if we were to achieve this. At

the end of one meeting, I

remember having one clear

goal in mind: I wanted to help

out all the kids who were in

quarantine. We all had this

goal, not just me. Then, that

is when the idea of online

courses came into the picture.

By now, we had more kids

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

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joining our group “summer

activities”.

We wanted to create a

fun, hands-on opportunity

and great experiences for

kids and teens to have this

summer.

To achieve this, it was time for

all the work to start. We were

all creating flyers and videos

to help spread the word out.

We also learned many things

about how to advertise during

this time, and we were just

aiming for kids in Arizona

to get the word about our

summer activities. We also

had to make registration

forms, get teachers for each

of our courses, and make

a schedule. We also had to

organize the content for

some of the classes, because

some of us were interested in

teaching them. I remember

being very overwhelmed with

all this, because there was so

much work to be done in a

little amount of time, and our

exams in school were being

held at the same time. But

by the time we were done

with that, we had another

problem, we needed to

contact everyone who had

registered for our courses.

This is when we decided to

do an e-Campaign. This is

also when I learned how to

make mock calls, which was

very fun for me. We texted,

called, and emailed everyone

based on which courses they

signed up for. Now, this took

a very long time, but you

know that if you have patience

you can get anything done.

And that is exactly what we

did. By now, we had around

10 people in the summer

activities group, and we

were constantly growing. We

wanted to change our name,

and we just started calling

ourselves members of YEF,

Youth Empowerment Forum.

We like this name because

it fits nicely with a simple

definition of who we were and

what we were doing; A group

of youth brainstorming ideas

to empower other youth. Now

by this time, the courses that

we were offering were almost

about to start. The courses

that we offer are First Aid/

Disaster Management, Vedic

Maths, Cooking/Healthy

Lifestyle, Intro to Python,

Content writing, Arts & Crafts,

Music Fundamentals, Intro to

Photography, Genetics, Chess

Fundamentals, and Fitness/

Yoga and Health. We decided

to keep these courses free

and try to encourage people

to donate instead. This is

where Ekal Vidyalaya comes

into the picture.

Ekal Vidyalaya is a non-profit

organization that helps give

education to underprivileged,

rural kids in India. They

raise money to help the

uneducated children in India

have a chance to learn. Our

YEF Leadership team saw this

and immediately decided we

wanted to help these children

too. This is also another

reason we made most of our

courses free so that more

people will donate to this

great cause. Even a donation

of $1 can educate 30 children

for one day. At the same time,

$365 can educate 30 kids for

one whole year. Because of

this, at the beginning or end

of each YEF class, we try to

make the kids understand

what a privilege it is to be able

to have an education here in

America, and how important

it is for kids in rural India to

have an education too. This

encourages them to donate

to Ekal, and it is a real blessing

to see these kid’s faces as we

tell them about rural India;

they can understand how

important and privileged they

are.

I am very thankful to

be a part of the Youth

Empowerment Forum, as

well as its Co- Founder

alongside my brother,

because it taught so many

things, not just about what

we did to become what we

are today, but also about

the world in general.

- Shreya Kadiyala

YEF Co-Founder

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YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF ORGANIZATION

is essentially a subset of the

WOMEN

EMPOWERMENT

FOUNDATION

A non-profit organization dedicated to helping women and

their families reach out to the community and other platforms

for personalized aid in any situation.

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

10


A non-profit organization

dedicated to helping women

and their families reach out

to the community and other

platforms for personalized aid

in any situation. The founders

of the WEF believed that they

would make a larger impact

during this pandemic, if they

could somehow encourage

kids and young adults to

continue being productive

from the home setting.

Hosting summer activities

seemed like an excellent

start; but involving the youth

was key to the success of this

mission, so they brought in

some high schoolers to create

a board and begin working on

this project. Thus, the Youth

Empowerment Forum (YEF)

was initiated.

We began this operation

as a way of connecting

with families during these

incredibly difficult and

unforeseen circumstances.

Our philosophy is to make

this summer fun and

empowering, so that these

kids can continue to learn as

well as develop their minds

with critical thinking skills,

while enjoying their time at

home. We understand that

during these times, thinking

about summer classes and

courses seems somewhat

trivial. However, as most of

us plan to spend most of

our summer indoors, these

classes are a great segue from

school work into laid back

learning, in order to remain

productive while still enjoying

the copious amounts of free

time that we have been given.

Now you may be thinking…

What makes our courses

so different from the

rest of summer courses

that are being offered

elsewhere? The answer

to that is we are a purely

student run branch of the

WEF.

Students have planned these

courses and they might even

be teaching them (with proper

qualifications of course). But

again our goal was to make

the YEF a part of the WEF that

would be involved in the lives

of the younger demographic

and the best course of action

was to allow students to take

over the operation. This group

of individuals is diligent,

determined and excited to

give you the best summer

experience that they can by

working day and night to

offer you courses of multiple

genres and levels.

Our course catalog includes

Vedic Math, Fitness and yoga,

Photography, Arts and Crafts,

Introduction to Business,

Python, Cooking and Healthy

Lifestyles, and Introduction to

Genetics, just to name a few.

These classes are all taught

by qualified individuals

who have dedicated their

time to creating an entire

curriculum for the summer

in order to ensure maximum

learning and pleasure. And

to make this experience even

more relatable, some of the

classes are even taught by

local students such as Arpana

Ajith , Shreya Kadiyala, and

myself, Sakshi Karra. Arpana

will be teaching introduction

to photography as a way of

sharing the knowledge she

has acquired at school in her

photography classes. Shreya

Kadiyala will give us a glimpse

into the world of sweets,

introducing the students to

several baking recipes as part

of the Cooking and Healthy

Lifestyle classes. I am in

charge of the Introduction to

Genetics class with several

biology related classes added

to my list of qualifications.

We have all come together

to give you the best possible

summer; so please take this

opportunity to look more

into the type of courses we

are offering and we will not

disappoint! Stay safe and have

an amazing summer!

- Sakshi

YEF Member

11

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF JOURNEY

Journey

of

Youth

Empowerment

Forum

YEF started in 2020 when we all went online.

Over spring break of 2020, one of YEF’s

mentors, Shyam Uncle, reached out to Shreya

asking her to make a video

for COVID, thanking front-line workers

All the original YEF members, who were friends

at the time, had the idea to get together and

pass their knowledge on to other kids.

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

12


This was especially appealing

because everything had just

gone online so there wasn’t

much to do. In May of 2020,

they decided on a name,

Summer Activities. YEF didn’t

exist in May of 2020. They

sent out a survey in the WEF

group chat to attract interest

for things that children were

interested in learning. The YEF

name (Youth Empowerment

Forum) and message was

created as they went along.

Along with creating a new

organization comes newfound

skills. Over the course of the

2 years that YEF has been

around, people learned how

to properly make flyers, excel

sheets, google forms, and use

zoom. They also learned how

to teach a course. The amount

of patience, dedication, and

planning that went into all of

this is no joke. Many people

also learned leadership, taking

the lead of the project that

they are running and making

sure everyone gets everything

done on time. Communication

skills were also important,

especially for the teachers and

the parents of the children in

the class.

YEF’s outreach is international,

with students from Minnesota

and New Jersey to India. We

are always looking to give back

to the community and have

contributed over 30K to Ekal

Vidyala in India. After classes

in 2020 and 2021, we have

hosted a chess tournament

and a Diwali Program in

November of 2021 at the

Ekta Mandir under IACRF

Organization.

- Garima

YEF Member

13

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF JOURNEY

YEF Summer Program

Expansion of 2020

The last couple of years in the pandemic was

a challenging time for us all, but the hardest

of all was in 2020, the absolute core of the

pandemic. Kids across the country were

experiencing their entire lives and education

being taken away from them and forced to see

society in a completely new light. The Youth

Empowerment Forum (YEF) was a group of

teenagers whose main goal was to educate

children around the country in time of the

pandemic in an engaging online environment.

In our first year, we offered 11 courses, with

eligibility based on age and difficulty. Through

the process, we empowered the youth and

learned skills to pave the way for our future.

The 11 courses we offered were:

First Aid & Disaster

Management:

CPR training, how to make DIY casts,

proper wound care, and how to

handle unforeseen circumstances,

such as natural disasters, medical

emergencies, etc.

Fitness, Exercise,

Yoga, and Healthy

Habits:

Teamly competitions per week

among students, and yoga taught

every Sunday morning by a

professional.

Python & Software

Programming:

To empower the CURRENT

GEN KIDS with NEXT GEN

TECHNOLOGIES and make the

future ready

Cooking & Healthy

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

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Lifestyle:

Teaches how to make dishes in

Indian and American cuisine with

ease, such as Blueberry Muffins,

Vanilla Cake, French Crepes,

Potato Fries, etc. (adult supervision

required)

Chess

Fundamentals:

Chess fundamentals, featuring the

Queen’s Sacrifice, Double Attack,

Overloading, and more!

Genetics:

How scientists have come across

the very nature of genes and

how this study has progressed

throughout the years, meshing

with technology and creating very

new and interesting ideas within

our society; hands-on activities

included.

Photography:

Learn about photography elements,

such as Portraiture, Elements, and

Composition; take the perfect

picture to capture the beauty of

the world!

Creative Writing:

Jump ahead in this essential life

skill to shape your future.

Fundamentals:

Reveal the basics of music, the

history of music, and compose and

perform your own music at the end

of this course!

Robotics:

Get some hands-on experience

with programming and build your

own robot by the end of this course!

Vedic Math

(Professional

Teaching):

Builds the basics of math and helps

students to solve problems quickly

and accurately.

In addition to teaching new skills

over the summer, YEF members

broadcasted an online Indian

Independence Day Celebration

online on August 15th to celebrate

Indian culture. This program

included facts on the Indian history

and flag, educational videos, and

ended with playing trivia!

Through the process of developing

these educational programs, each

YEF member grew as a person

and in their skill set. Motivated by

parents and students who took

part in our program, we set out to

expand our reach in the summer

of 2021.

Music

- Aashi Hemdev

YEF Member

15

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF JOURNEY

YEF Summer Program

Expansion of 2021

Engaging kids in the Summer in Phoenix

is a nightmare for any parent. Soaring

temperatures and bored children are a very

volatile mixture. Summer of 2021 was specially

brutal for parents in the valley due to the

Pandemic, restricted travel and reduced

number of summer camps and activities for

kids. The parents were exhausted working and

taking care of the children. The YEF members

discussed this issue in their monthly meeting

and decided to conduct online Summer classes

for the Summer of 2021.

The YEF Organization presented the Arizonan

community with free summer classes taught

by their lead members. The purpose of

these free classes was to give back to the

communities that everyone has taken so

much from. All classes were virtual on Zoom

and had a chat where the instructor could

send meeting information as well as answer

any questions that students may have. These

intriguing courses included: introduction to

music, photography, first aid , healthy lifestyle

classes and much more. As expected, multiple

young minds were excited and ready to attend

these classes. These classes were more than

just an hour-long lecture about a respective

subject. These classes helped children connect

with like-minded people of their age while

allowing them to unleash their imagination

and think outside the box.

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

16


YEF Diwali Production at Ekta Mandir

Diwali is an annual festival from India.

Stemming from the Sanskrit word “Deepavali”,

the “row of lighted lamps” Diwali celebrates the

victory of good over evil. Lord Krishna’s wife

Satyabhama killed a demon called Narakasura

all by herself on this day. Millions of Hindu, Jain

and Sikh followers around the globe all partake

in traditional celebratory activities for a span

of five days. Stylized by dazzling displays of

fireworks, people come out to celebrate this

glorious holiday with delicious Indian food

and prayers. The Indo-American Foundation

of Arizona decided to conduct a Diwali festival

on November 4th and 5th 2021 at the Ekta

Mandir Hindu temple in Phoenix, AZ.

The Diwali festivities included grand fireworks,

lighting of the unity lamps, special poojas to the

goddess of light and money, Lakshmi, Indian

dancing and Rangolis - illustrating pictures with

powdered pigments. The Youth Empowerment

Forum of Arizona (YEF) collaborated with the

temple and conducted many kid attractions

and activities such as pony rides, face painting

and balloon twisting. Members of the group

attended meetings and officers of the club

allocated members to their respective jobs

for the event. In addition to these activities

YEF members acted as stage managers,

food sellers and merry gamemasters. Stage

managers helped stage performers with

transposing their studio dances onto a stage,

lighting and audio machine management. Food

sellers pitched foods like lassi, a popular Indian

dessert beverage, and crowd pleasing cotton

candy! Approximately 200 revelers attended

the gathering, one of whom was chief guest

Katie Hobbs. The Secretary of State for Arizona

gave a heartwarming speech about pride of

heritage for the first night of the festival.

Another inspirational party attendee was a

representative of Arizona on the House of

Representatives, Dr. Amish Shah. In order to

prevent the spread of COVID-19, masks were

mandatory for the event and social distancing

was maintained. This local celebration was a

long-needed break for the Indian diaspora

from the insidious COVID-19 pandemic that

had spread a lot of gloom and dismay. The

Diwali celebrations infused a new vigor and

joy into the attendees and the organizers.

YEF Stage Managers rocking the stage!

YEF Co-Founder, Suhas Kadiyala (left)

Dr. Amish Shah (right)

17

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF JOURNEY

YEF Magazine Committee

The YEF Magazine Committee was once just

a casual idea that Aashi Hemdev and Shreya

Kadiyala had brought it up in conversation.

However, the duo wanted this small vision

to become a reality, as it would draw the

youth of Arizona to the YEF program. Shreya

and Aashi pitched their concept to Shyam S.

Byra , the program advisor. Immediately after

listening to the pitch, Mr. Byra recommended

the magazine committee to all YEF members

during the Autumn season of 2021. Not

long after, new members of this magazine

committee began writing about the start of

YEF, community service opportunities through

the program and its staggering members.

This magazine was to be published on May

13th, 2022. Shreya and Aashi’s vision has

become a reality, with a magazine that can

attract new members and great leadership

and service behind their committee. Fun Fact:

The magazine mentioned it the same magazine

you are seeing right now!

- Sarayu Nippani

YEF Member

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

18


YEF Chess Tournament: 2021

Chess is a strategic game invented in India

in the 8th century. This game requires a high

level of focus and skill to excel. It takes years

to master, which makes it an addicting, but

productive game at the same time. Playing

chess can increase self awareness and

improve memory. Chess can also bring people

together and help them make many new

friends. With this in mind, YEF and the Indo

American Foundation of Arizona held a chess

tournament on July, 31, 2021 at 2:30 PM to

8:30 PM at Ekta Mandir. This tournament

was 6 hours of fun packed chess action. To

educate the beginners in the group, YEF gave

them free chess classes to prepare them for

the tournament. These classes were taught

by the chessmaster, Swapnil Katikaneni, who

dedicated many hours and was one of the first

members of YEF, and now currently the Vice

President of YEF. Some of the children from

this tournament have continued on to play

in officially ranked USCF tournaments. They

have this introduction to the game to thank

for it. The tournament was free and Shyam S

Byra, and Swapnil Katikaneni were the chief

organizers .

YEF’s high ambitions paid off in the end, with

over 30 children signing up.The participants

were eager to show their parents the skills they

had learned over the past month of classes.

The outcome was amazing, the tournament

was a very fun and lighthearted event. There

were 4 rounds in total each with a 30 minute

increment per round. All of the kids enjoyed

it and it was a great experience for all the

parties involved. The 30 kids all competed

against one another with the winner of each

game playing against each other.. Everyone

was included and got to play.The children

were given pizza, ice cream, and many other

tasty treats. Due to the COVID 19 pandemic,

masks were made mandatory to maintain a

safe environment. Social distancing was also

maintained for the same reason.

- Sriniketh G

YEF Member

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YEF EXPERIENCE

YEF COURSES

YEF

Experience

YEF

Music

Fundamentals

Class

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Music. The one language

communicated without words.

The one concept some can’t

do without. The one way to

express emotions without

speaking a word, without any

rough action. This is what I

think of music. It is a subject

I love, and cannot imagine

living without. I want to share

my experience with others. I

want others to have the same

sanctuary I turn to when I can’t

handle myself. I want others

to share the same joy, to be

able to express everything on

their mind without uttering

a word. This was the start of

the Music Fundamentals class.

My name is Aashi Hemdev,

and I am an incoming 8th

grader at BASIS Phoenix.

I am 12 years old, and

the youngest member of

theYouth Empowerment

Forum (YEF) .

I have been playing the flute

since I was in 6th grade. Ever

since I opened up the flute

box, my awesome band

teacher and conductor, Mr.

Jared Bushee, has inspired

me to keep learning and

growing. There is not a single

day that passes by without

me learning and practicing

a new note, a new piece, or

learning music theory, such as

time signatures and complex

rhythms. However, learning

how to play an instrument

requires prior knowledge.

Knowing answers to questions

such as, what is an ensemble?

What are the different types

of instruments? How do you

read the treble clef? What

is a 4/4 time signature, and

how do you play it? If these

questions and vocabulary

terms are unfamiliar to you,

this class is just right. (You can

learn more info and join the

class here)

This course, along with 14

others, has been produced,

broadcasted, and funded by

the YEF, an initiative under

the Women’s Empowerment

Foundation (WEF). Who are

we? Why have we created

these activities? And what

have we learned through the

process? This article shares

my personal experience

working with the YEF, and the

benefits of collaborating with

such an amazing team.

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In the beginning, we were

just a group of students who

got together and decided to

do something to make kids’

experiences during COVID-19

better. I was very shy before

the first meeting because all

these students were older

than me, and I felt that the

only reason I had been invited

was because I got to know the

leader of the team through

public speaking competitions.

It turned out, the people

involved were very kind and

welcomed me with open

arms. I began to trust them,

and my shyness withered

away. I started talking more

in meetings and learned to

express my feelings without

acting timid, even in front of

advanced students.

After a few meetings, we

had decided to create fun,

knowledge-based online

classes. Everyone expressed

their opinions on what classes

they would like to broadcast,

what courses they could

teach, and how we could go

forward. I came up with the

Music Fundamentals class.

After we created a compiled

list of all the courses, we

had to create a registration

form. I and a few other team

members worked together

and it was ready in a few days.

The class was announced

about a week later. Some

other team members made

videos and flyers regarding

the classes and started to

YEF Music Fundamentals Class

The Process

share them on social media, a

platform I did not have access

to. Instead, I set out to write

a large article summarizing

every courses’ objectives

and explaining what the YEF

was all about. Once it was

published, I started to plan

the Music Fundamentals class.

After a few weeks of

coordinating with advanced

band students at my school

and Mr. Jared Bushee, I had

three teachers who were

ready to instruct my dream

course! I was excited about my

progress, but there was still

a lot more work to be done.

At this point the registrations

were in for all the courses.

One of the senior coordinators

of the YEF team, Mr. Shaym

Byra, sent me a long list of

registrations for the class and

explained the next steps. I

created an email campaign

by writing a detailed email to

all the participants expressing

thanks and giving further

information about the class,

such as timings, days, and

teachers assigned. Since I

did not have the software to

send out the email campaign,

I drafted the email message

and the Cognizant team

sent it out to more than

50 participants all over the

United States. I then had to

add everyone’s numbers into

my phone, and follow-up the

email with a text about their

class registrations. This was a

lot of work, and I was offered

help along the way, but I was

determined to do this work

myself. I declined all requests

of help, and after a full day

of staying on the computer

and phone sorting double

registrations, age-appropriate

participants, and who has

WhatsApp (our primary mode

of communication), my work

was finally done. Or so I

thought.

I was then informed that I had

to call every person who had

not yet responded or read

the message the next day.

As much as I was dedicated

to doing all the work myself,

this was becoming too much!

I was firm with determination,

however, and made up my

mind that I would do this

myself, too. By this time, I

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was receiving compliments

from everyone on the team,

“A 12-year old is creating the

entire class herself and is not

asking for any help!” I finally

felt that I had earned my place

on the YEF team. I wrote out

a call script that my mother

and Mr. Shaym Byra edited

and approved, and set out

to make 43 phone calls. This

was a tedious process, and it

took almost half of my day.

But at the end, it was worth

it. I had successfully made all

forms of communication and

spread the word successfully.

The rest of the tasks regarding

the class was up to the

teachers, and lastly I had to

make weekly check-ins and

introduce the class with a

small presentation.

My work in the team is far

from finished, of course.

There is still lots to be done,

and not much time to do

it. As school re-opening is

approaching quickly we need

to create surveys, certificates,

wrap up classes, and find

ways to stay in touch with all

the participants.

What did I learn?

How did I benefit from this

process of creating a class

and coordinating with all

these wonderful people?

I benefited in two ways: by

gaining Knowledge and the

thing one cannot gain from

studying books all day long -

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YEF COURSES

Experience.

Knowledge

As an average 12- year old

girl joining this team I had no

college experience of working

with computer programs,

no experience writing long

emails, none at all. I felt

foolish: not knowing how

Google Drive worked, not

knowing how to make a form

using Google forms, not being

able to use Google Docs (I only

ever used MS Word), etc. As I

kept learning, my knowledge

about computer programs

and workings of a college

system kept growing. I am

lucky this opportunity came

to me early in life. It gave me

so many valuable learnings

that I will definitely employ

in my high school career and

beyond.

Experience

Not everyone has the

opportunity to do something

of so much value at a young

age. Not everyone has the

opportunity to work with high

schoolers, gain their respect,

and work with them to create

a unified team. You cannot

learn to do some things from

a textbook, such as writing a

blog or creating a website. You

have to do it hands-on and

learn from your experience

doing it. This is why the YEF

Team has meant so much to

me. It has given me so many

things over the past few

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months. I have worked hard

to earn my place, and I finally

have earned the status of

being the youngest member

of the YEF team..

YEF-What is our

mission?

The Youth Empowerment

Forum, is a forum created

by Kids and Teens, for Kids

and Teens. The YEF has a

mission. “Along with providing

education to kids in the United

States, we want to support

education in rural India, one

of the places that cannot take

education for granted.” This

quote emphasizes the YEF’s

mission. We coordinate with

Ekal Vidyala, an organization

that meets this cause.

‘Let your child

give the gift of

education back

to a rural tribal

child.’

Over the course of 8 weeks,

the YEF has raised more than

$10K for the underprivileged

to receive an education. ‘$1

Educated 30 students for a

day. $30 educates 30 students

for a month. $365 educates

30 students for a year.’ These

donations are not mandatory,

of course, but they are highly

encouraged.

Final words...

I am thankful that life

presented me with this

unique opportunity,

and I am glad I took

it. I have learned so

much that I could not

have learned from a

textbook. Experiencing

this adventure made the

summer during COVID-19

so much better for me, and

I hope kids out there have

gained some knowledge

from our summer courses

too. I have learned

how to use much more

technology than when I

first started, and feel like

I am on a mission to help

the underprivileged kids.

Everybody has the right to

education. If you would like

to support our cause and

help educate children, please

donate. You might be making

a child’s dream come true and

open their mind to a whole

new world.

- Aashi

YEF Member

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YEF COURSES

Robots

ARE THE

FUTURE OF

THE WORLD

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As many know, robots are the future of the world.

Almost two-hundred years ago, nothing we have now

was available to the public. The use of cars and planes

was a mere fragment of imagination. However, with

the help of inventors all around the world and the use

of robotics, these ideas became a reality. Now people

have much more than cars and planes; including robots

that can aid in construction and creation. In this class,

we go through what it takes to build a robot; with me,

your teacher: Durga.

During this time of quarantine, many kids

are stuck inside, with nothing to do. As

part of the incoming freshmen class at

my high school, I have especially felt this

on many occasions. I remember only five

months ago, thinking that I would have

endless opportunities during quarantine

and enough to keep me busy, however,

this was not the case. In the beginning,

schoolwork would be given to students

and was supposed to last over most of the

day; but, the work had gotten fairly simple

since we could not talk with our teachers

on an everyday basis. Therefore, the work

would only cover up to three or four hours

of our day. Nevertheless, people found

new hobbies in cooking, arts and crafts,

and video games; and I was allowed to

teach over 60 kids the wonderful world of

robotics.

Before the end of this school year, I had

participated in robotics competitively

for almost two years and had learned to

code since I was ten years old. I started

my journey into the world of robotics by

learning Javascript for almost three years

and Python for almost two years. I began

competing in seventh grade and continued

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YEF COURSES

on the same team until the end of my eighthgrade

year. I was one of the main programmers

and took part in the construction of our robot.

My robotics team has reached the top three

in New Jersey and the top 130 in the world.

Prior to teaching robotics here at YEF, I have

taught smaller study groups at school and have

taken part in assisting my former teachers

at ALOHA Mind Math as alumni. Although I

have some teaching experience in the past, it

was only a taste of what was required to be a

single teacher with a class of over 30 students.

The process of creating a plan for each class

and adapting to the problems and situations

that occur takes a lot of time and effort. Also,

making sure every student gets the same

amount of help and attention needed for

them to learn in a fun and safe environment

is essential to having a successful class. Even

though it has been a little tough, I would not

trade the time I have had and will have for

the world.

COURSE CURRICULUM:

In this course, we will go in-depth into the

creation of robots and the programming it

takes for the robot to be independent. The

participants of this class will learn the parts

of a robot, and their functions; different

programming languages and the uses for

each; and how to create robots with your

own hands, in just four weeks. This class is for

students older than the age of 10 and does

not require any kits or previous knowledge

about robotics or programming.

To provide a brief interview of the four weeks:

Week 1, will be focused on getting started on

the programming sites and introduction to

mechanics. Week 2, will be on making your

first robot out of household products. Week 3,

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we will go more in-depth with programming.

Week 4, will be for fun, creativity, and playing

games like Jeopardy.

EKAL VIDYALAYA AND YEF:

This class and many others would not have

been possible without the organization called

Youth Empowerment Forum. This organization

has helped create summer classes for kids

all around the world, stuck at home due to

the lockdown and Covid-19. Along with the

robotics class, we have organized many other

classes; such as cooking and a healthy lifestyle,

yoga and fitness, intro to python programming,

and many more. When attending these classes,

the YEF has collected donations from the

participants to put towards Ekal Vidyalaya.

Ekal is a non-profit organization which helps

educate children in India who cannot afford

to go to school. The smallest amount of $1

can educate 30 kids for a day. By donating to

Ekal you are giving back to the community and

having fun at the same time. So please come

join us in your effort to help kids everywhere

get a chance to learn.

- Durga Shylesh

YEF Member

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YEF COURSES

Cooking

& Healthy Lifestyle

I have always loved

to bake, cook, and

experiment with

food. It is my passion

to bake, and I look to

expand my skills in the

culinary world and to

share them with other

young home cooks.

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My name is Shreya Kadiyala,

and I am a 14-year-old

freshman at Desert Mountain

High School. I was born in

Phoenix, Arizona but have

always loved to travel and visit

new places. I love to bake and

cook and am always looking

for new opportunities to

expand my culinary skills. I

also learn an Indian classical

dance called Bharatanatyam

and have recently started

learning how to play the

guitar. My friend, Sakshi Karra,

and I have been working

together to teach the Cooking

and Healthy Lifestyle course

that YEF offers. I am more into

baking, so I tend to teach how

to bake sweet dishes. Sakshi

loves to both bake and cook,

so she teaches how to make

dishes from different cuisines.

We both have experience in

cooking for over 7 years, and

love to teach other kids about

the culinary world.

I think of cooking as a different

art form. There are two very

important parts to cooking:

The dish’s appearance and

taste. I believe food should be

both visually appealing and

very flavorful, then only will

you have an audience for that

one dish. When it comes to

cooking, all five senses are

equally important. You have

to taste, touch, smell, see,

even hear the dish. The dish

will not be savored if even one

of these five senses are not

perfect. As many great chefs

like to say, “Everything has to

be cooked to perfection!”

The five senses are all

connected when it comes

to cooking. Taste goes deep

into the flavors of the dish.

Without the correct balance of

flavors, the food will not taste

the way you might want it to

taste. The smell of the dish

has to have an amazing aroma

for it to be captured by the

audience’s eye. This also ties

to how the dish looks. The dish

must be visually appealing

and colorful in order to make

someone’s mouth water.

This goes back to the idea of

measuring. While cooking,

all your measurements

must be perfect. If even one

ingredient is not measured

properly, it could mess with

the flavors, the aroma, and

the appearance of the dish.

Touch is also equally as

important as the rest of the

senses. For example, while

cooking something on the

stove, you must touch it to see

if it is cooked, then only you

will know. The dish must feel

cooked in order to actually

be cooked thoroughly. Touch

also shows the temperature

of the food; if the food was

frozen before, when you feel it

it should be cold. In the same

way, if you had just baked

something in the oven, you

must touch it to see if it is

warm or hot and ready to

eat. Now, we have come to

the very last sense: hearing.

There are certain sounds

that food makes, especially

while on a stove or on the

grill. For example, the sizzling

sound when you put water

in a pan tells you the pan

is hot. Hearing can tell you

simple things like this, and

is connected to all the other

senses in determining the

dish’s outcome. These are the

five most important senses

you must remember to test

while cooking.

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There are two flavor profiles

used in cooking: Sweet

and Savory. Sweet dishes

tend to have more sugar,

hence the sweetness, and

savory dishes don’t have

very much sugar. Cooking

is basically like science. You

have to experiment with

different ingredients and

measurements in order to get

a dish that tastes delicious. In

my opinion, that’s what makes

cooking, and especially baking

do fun. You never know the

outcome of the dish until

you’re done with it. There

are many different types of

cuisines.

A Cuisine is a style of cooking

that often relates to a region’s

culture and traditions. There

is Indian cuisine, American

cuisine, Thai cuisine, Japanese

cuisine, Italian cuisine ect.

These are located all around

the world, and they’re style of

cooking is what differentiates

them from other regions of

the world.

Now, let’s move on to the

Healthy Lifestyle aspect.

Having a healthy lifestyle is

very important for your body.

Everyone needs protein, fruits,

vegetables, dairy, and carbs in

their body. Of course everyone

eats sweets and candy once in

a while, but many people try

and refrain from eating lots of

sugar, which is great. Having

a healthy lifestyle means

eating healthy and eating

sweets in moderation. It also

means drinking lots of water

everyday, and even exercising

your body. Cooking makes

it hard to have a healthy

lifestyle, because we are all

very used to putting a bunch

of oil and other types of fat in

everything we eat on a daily

basis.

Especially in baking, most

dishes tend to have a lot

of sugar, which also isn’t

healthy for our bodies. This

is why nowadays people

are starting to make a lot

of healthy recipes. Cooking,

as I said before, is all about

experimentation, so it is

always good to try and

experiment making certain

dishes with healthier

ingredients. Of course it’s ok

to have sugar or fat once in

a while, but remember that

having a healthy lifestyle will

help prevent many health

problems when you are older.

I love teaching kids about

cooking and baking,

because it’s amazing to see

them having fun and learn

how to make something

delicious from just a

couple of ingredients. Of

course, we all love eating

too, but the wonderful

thing about cooking is

that if something comes

out wrong, just try making

it again using a different

recipe. Cooking is an

essential life skill that

everyone needs to know,

and it is important for

everyone to be leading a

healthy lifestyle!

- Shreya Kadiyala

YEF Member

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YEF COURSES

Creative

and

Content

Writing

Summers have always been

a time of visiting family in

India, reading books under

the blissful hum of a reliable

air conditioner, and swimming

under the unrelenting sun.

Neither the blistering humidity

of Uttarakhand, nor the dry heat

of Arizona has ever been an

obstacle to exploring the great

outdoors with friends. But this

year, it’s not the same

Those of us privileged enough to quarantine

during this destructive pandemic have slowly

seen the options of entertaining and engaging

ourselves dwindle. As we adjust to new methods

of communication and social interaction, many

of us feel restless.

As an incoming college freshman, however,

I see quarantine as an opportunity, not only

to better myself, but also to give back to the

community at a time of crisis. Quarantine,

for highschool graduates like myself, is an

immense free period-- the amount of time we

may not see again until we retire. I’ve chosen to

dedicate this time, instead, to several outlets,

one of them being the Youth Empowerment

Forum (YEF), founded through Arizona-

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based Women’s Empowerment Forum. This

grassroots organization is intent on building

a community of youth at a difficult time, and

offering educational summer courses meant

to engage and empower young students.

Still, all of this is not without a greater cause.

YEF works closely with India’s Ekal Vidyalaya, a

non-profit organization which aims to provide

every child in rural India a basic education. YEF

courses raise funds in the form of donations,

enabling the education of children across India.

Through YEF, I’ve been able to kickstart my

own course: Content and Creative Writing,

exploring both my passion of mentoring

younger students, and writing. At a time when

students are coming out of online schooling and

adjusting to life largely indoors, YEF summer

classes like mine provide an opportunity for

social and educational interaction. Content and

Creative Writing teaches students ages ten and

older essential writing skills, not only to build

the foundational skills necessary for future

schooling, but also to encourage pupils to use

their imaginations and grasp their passions.

Students have published blogs, created

websites through a free platform, composed

poetry, and as the course wraps up, written

flash fiction.

I believe writing is an excellent tool to bridge

the gap between ideas and action. When

students are exposed to such courses, they

learn to better express themselves on paper

and eventually verbally. I began writing stories

in elementary school. As an avid reader, I was

fascinated with the components of a story- What

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made a piece compelling? Why did characters

act the way they did?

In freshman year, I took my first creative

writing class, and was introduced to a world

of nonfiction, poetry, screenwriting, and more.

I took classes outside of school, got involved

with the literary and arts magazine, and I could

not stop writing. Then junior year, I jumped

from writing screenplays to producing a short

film for Bow Seat, an art activism organization

advocating for climate justice. My journey

didn’t stop there-- writing allowed me to

grow and develop my passion for activism

and storytelling. It allowed me not only to

understand the impact of a story, but also the

impact I could have.

Creative and Content writing caters to a variety

of students and I hope it encourages them to

begin their own journeys. The hard skills that

come with writing blog posts and stories--

composing a hook, using evidence, learning

to transition between concepts, and utilizing

elements of plots-- pave the way for more

complex and useful skills. Putting to use these

factors allows students to build communication

and interpersonal skills. As they learn to share

work, speak in class, and take constructive

criticism, students’ writing abilities also mature.

Oftentimes, younger students are not provided

with creative writing resources coming into

upper school. When these students are asked

to compose compelling essays or personal

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37

statements, they approach such tasks without

an open mind, instead defaulting to overdone

templates and stiff, boring styles. Delving into

poetry and storytelling encourages students to

think uniquely, using figurative language such

as imagery and more effectively use rhetoric

to illustrate their point.

Writing comes hand in hand with reading.

Growth in one’s writing skills is very much linked

with one’s relationship with reading. To author

excellent writing, you must read excellent

writing. One part of the class curriculum is

reading and watching examples of the writing

styles students have been asked to emulate.

Every lecture, discussion, and assignment

works to enhance the different skills needed

for remarkable writing.

As the summer slowly comes to a finale, YEF

is determined to use its momentum to build

community and provide youth with the tools

needed to grow and thrive. I’ve learned from

my students as they have from me and each

student who graduates from a YEF course is

that much better equipped for their future.

We hope you will follow us in our coming

endeavors.

- Poulami Soni

YEF Member

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YEF COURSES

Genetics

Course

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Senior year being

completed, I was ready to

let go of my high school

roots and begin a new

life with new people in a

completely new place. The

summer was meant as a

buffer between that time

of complete certainty as a

mere high schooler and that

of complete uncertainty as

finally a college student.

It was time to have a

summer free of planning

for the future and academic

commitments, a time to

develop myself as a human

being ready to venture off

into the real world.

I took my first incredibly huge step towards

this goal by working with the Women’s

Empowerment Forum as a part of my Senior

Research Project. There was a huge influx

within the BASIS population of intricate and

complex science research that had been done

by various students over the years, matched

by a small number of projects pertaining to

social, political, and environmental activism.

So, I decided to work outside of my comfort

zone and reach out to Mrs. Lalitha Byra,

the founder of the WEF. The WEF works

with women to better provide them with the

necessary tools and aid to overcome life’s

obstacles. And while most adults would

have been apprehensive with the fact that

a high school senior would soon be taking

over the social media aspect of a non-profit

organization, Mrs. Byra welcomed the idea

with open arms and immediately put me to

work.

At the time, the WEF was advertising an

NRI marriage bill petition which I quickly

transformed into my social media activism

project. I would post on all of the relevant

social media sites which - in a month- proved

to be Facebook and Instagram and continue

to monitor the likes, shares and comments

that each post received, while simultaneously

observing the number of signatures the

petition had gotten after each post.

Up until May, this research and coursework

was the only source of productivity I had,

working day after day to polish a presentation

that would essentially be seen by the entire

BASIS community. I had signed myself up

to write a blog about my findings every

week, manage several different social media

accounts and the statistics attributed to each,

and finally create a concise presentation

that I would have to explain and record

39

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF COURSES

for a final review. This was

all independent. I did have

advisors to nudge me towards

the right direction but the

question, research method

and everything else was up

to my discretion. But then it

was all over. My high school

career. My Senior Research

Project. The constant grind

for tests and managing due

dates. I was no longer a high

school student.

I also thought my journey

with the WEF had ended as

soon as my SRP had. But

soon after, Mr. Shyam Byra

and Mrs. Lalitha Byra had

introduced me to a new

youth led division of the WEF,

hoping that I could contribute

my leadership skills to the

overall dynamic of the team.

I was introduced to the rest of

the team through one of our

membership meetings and

only then did I realize that as a

senior I was the oldest one in

the group. It was so amazing

to see such young talented

individuals gather together

to coordinate amazing classes

for a national audience. These

students, some as young as

thirteen, worked day and

night to perfect every aspect

of this newly founded branch,

inspiring me to become a

part of it. Being a part of this

organization was unlike any

leadership position that I held

before because it required

not only a strong work ethic

but patience and diligence to

work with young kids every

week. By the end of the

first YEF summer, I noticed

that answering questions

didn’t seem so stressful and

depleting and I learned more

about myself as a teacher

and person along with the

students learning about the

particular topic at hand, which

is why I continued to make the

nouveau journey with the YEF

leaders and members.

That being said, the YEF

course that I decided to

offer was Genetics. My first

encounter with Genetics

was in eighth grade, when

my biology teacher offered

biotechnology as an elective.

As middle school students,

we learned the basics of

complex processes such as

gel electrophoresis, Western

Blot techniques, bacterial

transformation and the

science behind genetically

modified organisms. That

class truly broadened my

horizons, fascinating me to

the point of learning more

about the subject and making

me capable of critical thinking

and analysis. I continued this

scientific crusade in high

school as well, taking the

actual Genetics class. We

worked with machinery and

DNA, worked on case studies

and discussed the several

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

40


ethical components to such

a new science. I developed

a new affinity for Genetics

because I realized that the

subject encompassed all

other subjects. Mathematics,

Literature, Law and Ethics.

Knowing my curious self,

engaging in genetics did not

stunt my educational growth

but rather fostered a new

sense of childlike wonder to

learn and delve deeper into

the subject. So, I volunteered

to teach Genetics any kids

who were willing to embark on

this fairly recent and not very

well known (among younger

children) branch of science.

Our first class was about

the basic unit of life: cells. I

explained the function of the

cell and each organelle inside,

completing the class with an

analogy activity to compare

the organelles to daily

household items as a way of

removing the complicated

aspect of this lesson. The

next class was about the

genetic material in the body,

otherwise known as DNA and

RNA. Engaging the kids was

much easier with this lesson

because it was DNA extraction

time! As we saw the DNA

unravel in the cup filled with

strawberries and isopropyl

alcohol, I saw the kids’ faces

light up simultaneously.

We went through the world

of chromosomes, Punnett

squares, Hardy Weinberg

and even Genetically

Modified Organisms. They

asked questions, solved the

homework problems and

created a presentation for

the last class. These students

were so involved in the subject

that I had grown to love so it

was an amazing opportunity

to experience the teacher and

leader balance at a young age

and we hope to continue on

the student and member

experience for several more

years, hopefully bringing

knowledge to more children

nationally and supporting

such a wonderful organization

that is EKAL Vidyalaya.

- Sakshi Karra

YEF Member

41

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YEF TEAM 2021

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

SHREYA KADIYALA

Board of Director

ARPANA AJITH

Board of Director

SUHAS KADIYALA

Board of Director

SWAPNIL KATIKANENI

Board of Director

YEF TEACHERS

MICHELLE ROSS

YEF Teacher

SAKSHI KARRA

YEF Teacher

VARUN BOSE

YEF Teacher

POULAMI SONI

YEF Teacher

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

ABHINAV

VISHNUVAJHALA

YEF Teacher

42


YEF MEMBERS

GAUTHAM

YEF Member

AASHI HEMDEV

YEF Member

AKHIL DURVASULA

YEF Member

ANSHULA SIVUDU

YEF Member

GARIMA H

YEF Member

NIDHI CHINTALA

YEF Member

HASINI CHINTALA

YEF Member

MOHNISH ALLADU

YEF Member

KASHVI GUPTA

YEF MEMBER

HIMAJA JONNAKUTI

YEF Member

SARAYU NIPPANI

YEF Member

AARUSH REDDY

YEF Member

43

SRINIKETH GANTI

YEF MEMBER

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1


YOUTH

EMPOWERMENT

FORUM

PRESENTS

Online

Summer

Camp

For All Ages

In June & July 2022

Learn New Skills By Teens &

Kids For Kids & Teens.

GREAT WAY FOR KIDS AND TEENS TO GAIN EXPERIENCE!

ALL Ages

Welcome! May

vary for some

courses

A Safe, Fun,

hands-on

way to learn

Courses Offered:

ROBOTICS

BOOK CLUB

COOKING

PYTHON PROGRAMMING

PSYCHOLOGY & NEUROSCIENCE

YOGA

CHESS

SPEECH AND DEBATE

LEARN TO SPEAK SPANISH

FITNESS

CREATIVE WRITING

HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

PRICING MAY VARY DEPENDING ON COURSE

MORE INFORMATION COMING OUT VERY SOON!

(623) 688-1405 | YEF@WEFUS.ORG | WWW.WEFUS.ORG/YEF

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT FORUM MAGAZINE | VOL 1, ISSUE 1

44

WISHESH DIGITAL

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