Instagram launches an ‘Unlabel India’ initiative in Hyderabad, to enable youth to express themselves safely

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Hyderabad: Instagram launched the ‘Unlabel India’ initiative in Hyderabad today, which focuses on nurturing a safe and supportive community online. In partnership with Yuvaa, a youth media and insights company, the initiative is intended to inspire conversations among youth all across India and initiate positive online dialogue.

Instagram’s mission is to bring people closer to the people and things they love and that’s only possible when they feel safe online. The app has partnered with Yuvaa, known for its purpose-driven content, to initiate the initiative in a phased manner. The first phase includes a roadshow to 20 cities and 50 colleges, where young Indians will be encouraged to speak up on issues such as mental health, bullying, safe spaces and gender sensitivity. The next phase will be about having a sustained engagement with the colleges through ‘kindness clubs’, ‘kindness ambassadors’ and targeted digital initiatives.

The roadshow, which kick-started in Pune earlier this month, has, since then, travelled to various cities across India including Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Indore, to now reach Hyderabad. As a part of the initiative, Yuvaa visited some of the most prominent colleges in Hyderabad including Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Symbiosis Law School, NMIMS School of Pharmacy & Technology Management and addressed over 300 students. The college visits were concluded with an open-mic-evening that was organized in Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, where youth were invited to freely express themselves, and share their personal stories.

Tara Bedi, Public Policy and Community Outreach Manager at Instagram, while speaking about the initiative mentioned, “We are glad to bring the ‘Unlabel India’ initiative to Hyderabad. Instagram is a place for safe self-expression and the safety and well-being of our community is our top priority. With this initiative, we’re hoping to `lead a countrywide conversation with students and spark a movement of kindness, empathy and respect, that is core to our platform and percolates to the entire community.”

From Hyderabad to Chennai, the roadshow will continue to travel to all parts of the country like Guwahati, Chandigarh amongst others and aims to reach half a million people via online and offline engagements by the end of the year. Nikhil Taneja, Co-founder and CEO of Yuvaa, commented, “There’s more that brings people together than tears them apart. We aim to have critical conversations with today’s Gen Z, on topics that usually don’t get discussed like loneliness and body shaming, in an environment that is safe, diverse and inclusive. We’re proud to have partnered with Instagram on this journey, as it’s the first place where a new generation of young people express themselves. Together we hope to ‘Unlabel’ the stereotypes that constrain today’s youth.”

The initiative builds over the successes of the ‘Unlabel’ content series that was launched last year by Instagram and Yuvaa. In 2020, the ‘Unlabel India’ initiative carries forward the same objective, but in the form of a scaled program that aims to positively impact the well-being of India’s Instagram community.

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