YCAN Video Challenge: The Victory

YCAN aims to actively engage the youth in exploring solutions and innovative ideas to improve air quality. One of its initiatives towards this end was the Clean Air Video Challenge ; a project implemented from October 2017 to September 2018 in partnership with the North India Office, US Embassy, New Delhi. Since air pollution has become a major issue in the global arena, YCAN encourages young minds to document & share their issues regarding air pollution and their unique ideas for solving the issue in a simple visual format.

Throughout the project, the youth was engaged in a plethora of research activities for their video, learning about air pollution and air quality and its various aspects. An educational panel discussion along with an
orientation session was organized for the participants.

The panel was moderated by Mr. Stewart E. Davis, Director of Programs, Embassy of the United States of America. Panelists included Dr. Nitish Dogra, Associate Professor, Convenor, Centre for Climate and Environment Health (CCEH), Dr. M.P. George, Scientist, Delhi Pollution Control Committee, and India Director of Clean Air Asia, Ms. Prarthana Borah.

The topic for the panel discussion was ‘Every Breath We Take’. It also went on to discuss the participants’ ideas for the videos. The success of this event was reflected in the feedback from the participants who came to the session with numerous questions and left with an aware and informed perspective of air quality.

The next stage of events in the process of this video challenge came after the entries were received from the participants. A film screening session was organized for the 13 accepted entries in front of a jury of seasoned and creative experts in the field of air quality. Mr. Tamseel Hussain, Founder, and Director of Pluc TV, Ms. Reecha Upadhyay, Campaigns Director, Purpose, New Delhi and Mr. Aakash Arora, Youth Clean Air Network Lead, Clean Air Asia India.

The competition was tough & only 6 films made it to the final screening event. The final film screening took place at the American Centre, Barakhamba Road, New Delhi, in front of a separate jury. The members of the jury were Mr. Tamseel Hussain, Founder, and Director, Pluc TV, Dr. M.P George, Scientist, Air Laboratory, Delhi Pollution Control Board, Ms. Lolita Bhaduri, Art Director, Hindustan Times, and Ms. Priya Sreedharan from US Embassy. Among the finalists, 5 final winners were selected on the basis of their content and filming.

The winners of the YCAN Video Challenge were:

Winner 1: Smriti Singh from Chintan Environmental Research and Action Group, New Delhi

Presenter – Ms. Smriti Singh

Winner 2: Montage 2.0 from Faculty of Law, Delhi University, Delhi

Presenter – Mr. Anuj Kumar Dhaka

Winner 3: Air in My City from NRAI Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi

Presenter – Mr. Yugal Bisht

Winner 4: The White Silhouettes from Sushant School of Art and Architecture, Gurugram

Presenter – Mr. Rishab Denis Rodrick

Winner 5: Uncanny from Niscort Media College, Vaishali, Ghaziabad

Presenter – Mr. Joseph Christo

Congratulations to all the winners!

However, one must remember that the war on the air pollution is far from over. It is now too late for mere preventive action – we need to continue making  constant efforts towards the betterment of the air we breathe.