The Young Ambassador Program more popularly known as ‘Yaps’ is a flagship activity of 41 International for the children of the members of 41 clubs all over the world. Yap seeks to promote exchange visits between children groups of India, Europe and other countries. This program gives a great opportunity to the young adults to meet people of various ethnicities, learn foreign cultures and see new places, all of which are a huge learning experience for them.
This year we have 12 Indian Yaps travelling to Austria, Belgium and Germany in South Europe and 12 to Denmark, Finland and Germany in North Europe. Also 2 yaps are travelling to South Africa.
The incoming Yaps are comparatively lesser. 8 European Yaps are travelling to South India and 9 to North India.
The visiting children live in homes of fellow 41ers. The Yaps travel to various cities and are shown around and given a good time by the local 41 clubs. Right down to airport pickup till the time they are dropped back to the airport; all duties are borne by the 41ers of that area.The hospitality of the European hosts is amazing as reported by the Indian Yaps. The young adults are given varied experiences right from swimming in the blue ocean to skating on ice. The Indian hosts also do their part by giving these young adults a true taste of India by hosting them in their homes and taking them to tourist places.
As awareness is increasing the popularity of the Yap tours in India is gaining great momentum, so much so that the seats get filled up within 2 days of announcement.
This year the National board is working towards having smaller Yap tours to closer countries like Sri Lanka and Mauritius which may have 4 Yaps for a week.
There are efforts being made to make the tours more valuable for the young travelers. The Yaps are being awarded certificates of participation by 41Clubs of India. Also on the cards is an addition of a certified community program to add greater value to the activity.
The 41ers who hosts Yaps in their houses are the pillars of this program. New initiatives have been taken to award the hosts with a certificate of appreciation and are duly thanked by the President with a special mention and mementoes in the AGM.