2020 was a banner year for YICG Games for Seva in terms of being recognized as a unique leadership program, providing not only the opportunity for hundreds of hours of service, but also learning skills such as design thinking, game development, prototyping, collaborating and conducting presentations. All life skills for this era of our civilization.
What have we accomplished
11 High School Youth received the Presidential Award, the highest award for service in USA. What is the back story? How did a small organization think so big? 29 deck and board games in 4 years is no small feat. It happened due to a unique confluence of mentors, teaching paradigms, technology tools, and a can do service spirit.
The idea was born in 2015 as a way to engage students in Vedic study of Values & Character. We embarked on creating a board game with all students involved at every stage in some part of the development, facing the unique challenges of schedules & time conflicts. Hundreds of hours being spent just happened. The plan was to create games of value, with a message, to engage our community in uplifting work and give time for service in this manner. Once the game prototype was created, we took it on the road to our partner classes and shared the joy of playful teaching, creating priceless learning opportunities that we never had before.
Fruits of our collective labors
Smaller teams took shape, ideas brainstormed, summer design camps emerged, and tools were learned. Mentoring went into high gear by Rathi Raja and Madhu Allu. We could see with the full force of direct vision that this was an extremely meaningful effort, pulling our students, their families and the community together in a service effort filled with playful purpose. Serious work, layered with fun and creativity, will stay for a lifetime, forge bonds between people and stand the test of time.