This is the consolidated list of abstracts of the presentations at the
International Geography Youth Summit — 2021 (IGYS–2021).
They are in no particular order.


Geographies of Topophilia And Topophobia During Covid-19 Pandemic In Durgapur

Jaya Paul (Class 11), Priyanka Layek (Class 11), and Tamali Halder (Geography Teacher)

St. Michael’s School, Durgapur, West Bengal, India

The spread of Covid-19 has devastated global public health. Along with this, economic and social crises have made existing inequalities worse and made certain parts of the world more vulnerable. The pandemic has restricted people’s mobility, largely confining them to their households. In this context, it becomes important to study how ‘home’ is perceived during lockdown.

This research is a joint venture of three people, so the roles were accordingly sorted before carrying out the work. Priyanka Layek and Jaya Paul, with the aid of our geography teacher, made a structured questionnaire through Google Form and surveyed residents of Durgapur. We analyzed the resulting data and reached some conclusions.

Our research shows that most of the people residing in owned houses not only feel a sense of belongingness but could also invest more in their health care as opposed to those residing in rented houses. The wards that are known to have higher numbers of assets in the form of radio, mobile phones, television or laptop, are more towards the centre of the city. These wards display higher levels of precautions taken at home as they know more about different precautionary steps taken to tackle the virus, via information and communication technology. The issue of encroachment on one’s privacy within a household and increase in the burden of household chores is yet another problem which has manifested in different areas of Durgapur.


Geography of Covid Mental Health Care

M S Sanvi Meena

Class 9, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India

To keep good mental health, we need to live in a peaceful environment.  If we live in a calm area, people don’t make a lot of noise and where people just mind their own business our mind remains more calm.

A person who is depressed can talk to someone, who could help.   Stress can be reduced and the person can live a better life when the geography around him or her is safe.

If we live in a place where there is a lot of commotion and people keep troubling us unnecessarily, we can not keep it to ourselves.  Our stress keeps adding up and you may not know what to do.   Such a situation makes it harder for us to like people talking to us and never tell them the truth.

When we are depressed or stressed it’s better to go to a place where you feel calm and peaceful.   Go where you feel safe.   If we feel safe at home,let’s  be there.   Let’s Talk to people, talk to our family, talk to our close ones.   Talk to someone whom we can share anything with.   We can talk to someone whom we trust the most about mental health.

In this pandemic,  people couldn’t get out of their houses.   Many could not talk about how they had  felt and kept to themselves.   I conclude by saying-” The place where we live and the present time is a significant factor that determines our mental health.


How People From Different Backgrounds Have Dealt With Online Classes

Siddharth Ashwin

Class 8, Poorna Learning Centre, Bengaluru, India.

Watch Siddharth’s presentation of his research on the NCERT Official channel.

I live in Bengaluru, a metropolitan city, where some are well off, while others struggle to make a living.

The Covid situation dealt a blow to learning, a big part of one’s childhood. Fortunately, since the concept of virtual learning came, it is now a significant Covid-care.

Most of my friends have adjusted to online schooling. However, some face issues, which leads me to my research question.

How have people from different backgrounds–livelihoods, conventional/ unconventional schools, family sizes–dealt with the challenges of online classes?

I did a pilot survey on ten school students, including family friends, playmates, and children of caretakers who work in my apartment. A few questions I asked were – What kinds of problems do you face? What were the solutions? What were the measures taken? What features from online classes would you retain?

Most students found online medium distracting, because of access to social media during class. A few also complained of strain to the eyes. Many had connectivity issues, with multiple people sharing a network. Varied solutions were sought for. Many students found online presentations more effective.

Now, I propose to reach out to more students, adding specific questions to map the challenges faced and solutions sought to varied backgrounds.

Even though Covid cases have started coming down, and schools are reopening, there are chances of a fresh wave slamming us, leading back to online classes. The results of my surveys would be useful to create a more efficient model for online learning.


How Children Going To Schools Were Affected By Covid-19 Pandemic

Sai Lohith Killi, Sai Vamshi B V, and Pavan

Class 9, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India

The Covid-19 pandemic has led to the lockdown of all schools and continued studying through online classes. It has been a new experience for all of us. The pandemic has affected  us in various ways. Now the cases have decreased and the government approved the opening of the schools for a few higher grades.

We are going to use this opportunity to interview each student  of our class to share how Covid19 has changed them and link this to how the changed geographical environment during the pandemic has affected them.

By doing this interview we narrow down the main causes of their change due to the pandemic.Why is there such a drastic change in the people after the pandemic and how has geography brought about this change?


Different Views on Covid vaccination

Mohamed Faizan

Class 10, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India

I live in Sultanpalya, Bangalore, with my loving family. When the first wave of Covid-19 began, we were just watching on television about Covid cases and the precautions to be taken.

We didn’t take it seriously, until my mom tested positive and was hospitalized for 11 days along with my grandfather who was critical. By God‘s grace and the doctor’s care they recovered and returned home. We all were happy to see them back home.

However, my neighbours started avoiding us. That was where we felt sad.

The situation became worse when one of my neighbours lost his life to Covid-19. The city government (BBMP) declared our area a red zone.

This made me think seriously about taking precautions in my family such as using masks, sanitizer, hand-wash and avoiding going out. We also thought of taking care of my neighbours by sharing our practical experience of being a Covid victims,  by connecting them through WhatsApp and phone calls.  Even then, in my ‘red zone area’ many people were not serious about it, moving around maskless.  When the Government started giving vaccinations my mom was first to get vaccinated, followed  later by my other family members.

I want to ask my unvaccinated neighbours what they think about Covid-19? Why are they not vaccinated? What’s their opinion about ‘prevention is better than cure’? In this way, I want to connect geographies of care with my neighbours.


Happiness of life? What has Covid-19 done to it?


Class 9, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India.

During the second wave, my grandma contracted Covid-19. She was hospitalized in the ICU and suffered a lot of pain. Subsequently, she came home to my ground floor.

I was restricted from going  down; my mom was in a panicked state, and my dad literally became the general in command. At the beginning we thought everything would be fine. But that night was hell for us. My mom had to cook the food and serve it to my grandparents. Here the problem arose. How will we give the food to my grandparents? We cannot use normal containers as we can’t get it back and we may run out of containers. My dad became hyper active to find a way to supply food and ended up having a panic attack. Somehow, we came up with an idea to use disposable plates. Like this for the next 14 days, my life was filled with heated arguments and cautionary commands. Once, when I was at a brink of frustration in an argument, a thought struck my mind. What has happened to our family? Where is all the happiness? Where are those laughter’s. Where is my  free and casual dad? Where is my peppy mom? Where is ‘me’?

Now, at this moment, I can frame a clear question to that thought!  Where is the “real” family?  What has Covid-19 done to the happiness of a family?  Happiness of a people?  Happiness of kids?  Happiness of life?


How I Created COVID Care Geographies at Home

Keerthika P

Class 9, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India

It is a fast moving world, where every individual focuses on their own well being and tends to ignore other’s love and compassion .One year of pandemic and lock down spent with our families brought us together in our comfort zone.Here comfort zone means “Our Home”.A home cannot be defined as a comfort zone unless and until we are comfortable with the people we live.

My mother had fallen ill.Later she was diagnosed as covid positive.I didn’t feel depressed. Instead I started motivating my mom to cope up with the situation. I took responsibility and tended to her needs and also shared my happy memories of my school.All this was done by following covid-19 protocol.During this time, our relatives were also very supportive which made me feel more confident.

My dad had lost his job.The situation turned worse with the loss of my father’s job.But we never gave up.In Fact,we spent most of our time experiencing the beauty of nature and catching up with the past. Our family came out stronger from this situation.

This pandemic made me build a  loving bond with my dear ones.Unless and until we fall prey to unprecedented situations we fail to realize the value of true love.This a great lesson which I learnt during covid-19 pandemic.


Different Views of People About COVID-affected Patients

Arfa Fathima

Class 8, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India.

My life was simple with my family in Bangalore until the pandemic.

At the beginning of the pandemic, we were new to the lifestyle and we started taking precautions to keep ourselves safe, but as the second wave hit us, we did not take Covid seriously, but the situation started getting worse all around the world. The number of Covid cases increased.

My family and neighbors were also attacked by Covid for not taking correct precautions. But after they recovered, people started treating them differently, which mentally tore them.

From the information I got from my relatives and neighbors I could analyze that people started avoiding them. When I think about it deeply I realize that people can be mean sometimes, that could be because of the different views we all have or it could be because of the different ways we understand particular information. But why can’t we be kind towards them?

We know that they are going through a lot of struggles, so do we still need to treat and make them feel different? We should treat them kindly and support them. The question is HOW? How can it be done by following the precautions? We followed many ways to support and be kind to our relatives and neighbors, We talked to them periodically, we gave them tips to boost their immunity, etc. There is still a way to be kind and show humanity, so why can’t we?


My Geography of Covid Self-Care

Smriti S

Class 8, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru, India.

Geography is empowering. We all have the power to create the geography that we want. I chose to create a geography of self care during the COVID 19 pandemic.

Wearing mask, washing hands frequently, maintaining social distance prevents the COVID 19 virus getting into our body. Vaccination reduces the risk of getting infected from COVID 19. The precautions are quite simple to follow. By following the above mentioned  precautions I feel very safe. I keep myself active by practising yoga, drawing, painting, reading books and spending time with friends on the phone.

To keep my mind calm and relaxed, I practice meditation. Meditation not only keeps the mind calm, it also reduces blood pressure, improves immune function and also increases oxygen levels. My personal geography of care is to be happy, active, learn new things, spend time with family and do productive things.

The geography of self care I created benefited me both physically and mentally. My experience helped create a similar COVID self care geography in my home.

“Please wear your own mask before helping others” this reminds us about the importance of self care. If you don’t look after yourself you won’t be able to help others.


Geography of Care in my Surroundings during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Avni Rao

Class 8, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning, Bengaluru

I live Bangalore, a city of nearly 12,764,935 people. My place of research is my house and its surroundings. My relationship with the people in my research location is that of my neighbour, relatives and family members.

My research question is what are the ways in which we are caring for one another during the COVID – 19 pandemic? I collected data through different interviews with my family members, relatives and neighbors about the care for one another during COVID-19 pandemic.

As many of my neighbors had been infected with COVID, they became more ‘Covid – safety’ conscious. They took precautions such as wearing mask, washing hands frequently, restricting their travels and maintaining social distance.

We helped each other by taking rounds in sharing food and tending to the necessities of the quarantined families and following the government’s guidelines for our safety. We also helped each other get vaccinated by scheduling vaccination drives for those who couldn’t get themselves vaccinated. We mentally and emotionally supported the ones who were affected by COVID-19 and the ones who couldn’t return to their families during the pandemic.

The pandemic has affected everyone’s life in one way or the other. It has helped families bond with each other. It has shown people the value of spending time with their families and given us the time to work on our hobbies and interests, and also time to try new things which we couldn’t normally fit into our daily schedule.


Corona Virus Care By Family Members And Neighbors

Ashika Madisetty, Lavanya Munikoti, and Madhumita

Class 8, Vidyanjali Academy for Learning

We all are affected by covid-19. It has brought a huge change in our lifestyle. The time when the covid-19 cases were more, and the Indian government announced lockdown. We’re not allowed to go out, ( we should wear masks, use sanitizers and maintain social distancing wherever we go when necessary). All these things were for our safety. But still, I found many people affected by covid-19. Then I started to think

  1. What more should we do to protect ourselves from the virus?
  2. How can we mentally be prepared to fight against covid-19?

All questions arose. I had researched how to be healthy during the covid-19 pandemic. I found out that we need to have good immunity. Then I started enquiring with my neighbours through calls on how they are boosting their immunity and be mentally healthy?

Answers were:

  1. Daily drink lemon water, eat fruit salads, sprouts and green leafy vegetables,
  2. Look at plants they will remove all your tensions, stress,
  3. Spend time with family, relatives
  4. Don’t use more social media as people will post fake news related to covid-19 they will aggravate our tension

With these ideas, my family started doing some of them.

Even our apartment has taken a few measures.

  1. Pasting all covid-19 precautions to be taken at the walls in the basement.
  2.  motivating us to do yoga and meditation at least 15min a day,
  3. Planting trees and taking care of them in the basement.

These were what our family and apartments have done to fight against Covid-19.


Adaptation in the Time of Covid-19

Nathan Samuel and Leah Dinoop

Class 8, Anweshana Montessori House of Children, Bengaluru

Though perhaps not as deadly as other virus outbreaks such as Nipah or Ebola, Covid-19 certainly affected people globally.

In this study, we try to understand how Covid-19 changed the Geography of living arrangements, personal care, and relationships in our community. We surveyed the fifteen adolescent students (aged 12 to 14) of our school and seven teachers and their families on the various changes they faced during this long span of lockdown.

We used open-ended questionnaires for all participants, followed by interviews to fine-tune the responses wherever needed.

Although we initially struggled with being cooped up in our houses, we eventually connected more with our families and ourselves—something we lacked in the fast-paced world we lived in before the pandemic. We found out that many of us picked up new hobbies and skills.

The home set-up changed in most families to accommodate everyone’s needs and create a space for work and study. Some families shifted residence within the city so that the whole family could live together; a few made an urban to rural shift to live with their grandparents.

We learned that by the end of the second wave, Covid-19 had become the new normal; we had learned to adapt to it and even found our silver linings!


Change in people’s behavior towards pets in Covid times

Harshitha H L

9th grade, Poorna Learning Centre, Bengaluru

Watch Harshitha’s presentation of her research on the NCERT Official channel.

I live in Sadashivnagar, Bengaluru. I see a lot of pet animals, this shows how much people love pet animals in my surroundings.I used to see people care towards the street dogs. Life of street dogs during COVID was not easy, in fact I saw two dogs die in my neighborhood.

My research question was, “What are the difficulties faced by pet-owners the people with pets during covid? Did they have financial problems? Or what might have they done if they were in quarantine?  increased workload was shared within family members? How did they manage the space inside the house for the pet, with work from home and online schooling? Which animal they preferred and why? Or did they have to resort to giving off their pet? If so, to other people or to some institutions? Or some other problems and solutions, I may not be aware of.

I plan to conduct an in-person pilot survey of  people owning pets in my surroundings. I can meet many of them in the two main public parks in my locality. I am making a questionnaire form and conducting a pilot survey. Based on the information provided by them, I will interview a few of them. We can know how the outlook and  feelings of people have changed towards pets during Covid.


My extended family’s COVID journey

Medha Bhatta

9th grade, Shibumi, Bangalore, India

Watch Medha’s presentation of her research on the NCERT Official channel.

I live in Bangalore, where most of my family lives.  Although I am not close to many of them, I was able to monitor all major events that were held because they also live in Bangalore. This leads into my research question.  How has my family  reacted to COVID?  What precautions have they taken to protect themselves, their families, and everybody else around them?

I had conversations with seven family members who gave information about the rest of the family.  Firstly, I found that my family took more precautions during the first wave than the second.  By the time of the second wave, we were all frustrated, and tired of being stuck at home.  Some of my family followed just the bare minimum rules by the government.  They failed to recognize that they were endangering  other people by going out to/hosting events.

The second wave was more intense than the first. There were stricter guidelines about going out.  Therefore,  my cousins, aunts, uncles, and I could not attend these events.  This made me realize that these rules were followed only when strictly enforced.

The perceptions of COVID safety varied throughout my extended family, as did their adherence to the COVID safety rules.  Thus, they endangered others’ health in the family.  This weakened the geographies of COVID care in our family.


Apps to the Rescue

Kanishk Gokul

G.o.D., The Institute of Geographical Studies, Chennai.

Watch Kanishk’s presentation of his research on the NCERT Official channel.

The second wave of Covid brought two kinds of restrictions to Covid patients’ movements: (1) state-mandated lockdowns, and (2) patients’ physical inability. This hindered patients’ access to time-critical care.

Cyberspace — a widespread interconnected digital information technology —  helped overcome these restrictions. Here, the movement of information is instantaneous. Using applications (“apps”), benefactors (medical care-givers, doctors, oxygen suppliers, pharmacies, donors) were connected rapidly to beneficiaries (Covid patients, primary care-givers).

Cyberspace enabled beneficiaries to access the right care, from their respective locations, regardless of various boundaries caused by Covid.

I examine the various processes involved. Starting with the app creation, to the highly organized training given to volunteers and the networking that took place, who were the various parties involved, and, most importantly, what motivated people to be so outgoing and altruistic, because altruism is the base that created cyberspace-mediated geographies of care.





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