1. Today young people take an active part in the social life of the country. What youth organizations do you know?
Itís quite natural that young people want to socialize with their equals so as to express their views on several political and social issues. They join youth organizations and societies. The main aim of these organizations is to involve young people into socially useful activities such as sporting events, volunteering at hospitals, taking care of war veterans, assisting the old and the handicapped, carrying out some ecological projects and doing other things.
There are a lot of youth organizations in Belarus. The most authoritative of them are: the Belarusian Republican Youth Union (BRSM), the Belarusian Republican Pioneer Organization, the Association of Belarusian Scouts, the Belarusian Organizations of Falcons, the Belarusian National Scout Organization, the Association of Belarusian Guides, etc. The aforementioned organizations take an active part in the formation of the basis and implementation of the state policy in respect of youth. These activities are managed and directed by the State Committee on the Affairs of Youth.
At the same time there are a lot of informal youth movements that want to express themselves in different ways. Usually they are organized on the base of common interests or preferences in music styles or in arts priorities. Some try to express their political views others are searching for their own answers to universal problems: ecological, religious or philosophical. Anyway all young people want to express themselves and find their place in this world.
One more interesting phenomenon is sub-culture. It is generally held that sub-culture is the culture of those who are dissatisfied with their place in society. On the whole Teds, Mods, Rockers, Bikers, Skinheads and Punks are the sub-cultures of the politically or economically weak segments of the society.
It is interesting to note that sub-cultures follow a cycle. At first they shock then provoke a strong response. As soon as the sub-culture gains momentum it magnetizes youth in search of rebel unity. Many adopt it for fun, and play at rebellion in their leisure time. The sub-culture rapidly ceases to express serious dissent. In the end it becomes another recognized and colourful part of urban culture.
2. Have you ever joined a youth organization? Why (not)?
I have never joined any youth organizations, probably, because I havenít found anything special or interesting for my personal development. Iím very busy with my studies, besides Iíve got a lot of interests and hobbies. I learn Polish, visit fitness club and dancing classes. I read a lot and I like going to the cinema with my friends. By the way, Iím a very sociable person and have got some close friends and a lot of schoolmates or just mates. Iím fond of travelling and like to meet new people. I can express myself in various activities organized at school: concerts, sports competitions, class meetings and parties, and of course at my everyday classes.
Thus I donít feel intention to join any organization.
I joined the Belarusian Republican Youth Union (BRSM) some years ago. It is a youth organization in Belarus. Its goals are to promote patriotism and to instill moral values into the youth of Belarus, to unite patriotically thinking young people for active participation in the construction of a society of social justice and progress using activities such as camping, sporting events and visiting memorials. The organization was created after a merger of other youth groups in 2002 and is the successor of the Leninist Communist Youth League of the Byelorussian SSR. The BRSM is the largest youth group in Belarus and is supported by the Belarusian government.
The main objectives of the organization are as follows:
- to express, defend and realize the rights and legal interests of its members;
- to form the world outlook, based on moral and spiritual, as well as Christian, values;
- to foster patriotism as the main spiritual and social value;
- to express devotion to the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus, to the country, its people and its state symbols;
- to give assistance to every member of the organization in his spiritual, intellectual and physical development and in realization of his abilities and creative potential;
Ė to take part in preparation of young people for the defense of their motherland.
The Belarusian Republican Youth Union and its members accomplish their goals and objectives in the following activities:
- they participate in formation of youth policy and put it into practice;
- they support the initiatives of the youth, directed at self-perfection and all-round development of their individual abilities;
- they help young people to become integrated members of society;
- they elaborate and accomplish different educational, social and other youth programs which do not contradict the present legislation of the republic of Belarus;
- they render assistance in finding employment;
- they promote international youth co-operation;
- they attract the attention of the mass media and the bodies of state power to the problems and initiatives of the youth;
- they organize conferences, meetings, lectures, exhibitions, concerts for young people; etc.