“Cultivating a healthy mind and body is the key to the overall development of a person,” said Prof. (Dr.) Manik Saha, Chief Minister of Tripura, who inaugurated the 13th North Eastern Students’ National Integration Movement (NESNIM) Conference. The conference took place from September 30 to October 3 at a Holy Cross School in Agartala, India. NESNIM is an initiative of the Holy Cross Educational Foundation (HCEF) under the aegis of Holy Cross's North East Province. Fr. George Jacob, C.S.C., serves as HCEF Secretary.
Approximately 500 students and 100 animators from 25 schools representing over 15 diverse communities over the region gathered under the theme, “Teen Health: Our Wealth”, to address the positive aspects of student life and eliminate harmful energies and addictions.
The sessions, animated by FAYTH Clinic in Mumbai, focused on harnessing the students’ vibrant energy and potential to enable them to face their future more confidently. Afternoons featured outdoor competitions, stage presentations, and artwork.
Present for the event were the Most Rev. Lumen Monteiro, C.S.C., Bishop of Agartala, Shri Abhishek Chandra, IAS, Special Secretary, Department of Industries and Commerce, and Fr. Simon Fernandes, C.S.C., Provincial.
The genesis of this gathering began in 2001 when the North East region, particularly in Tripura, faced a volatile political situation, which resulted in violence, destruction of property, and the deaths of many people, including one Holy Cross Priest. As a way to combat the civil hostilities, the Holy Cross Fathers decided to fight back with a student-based peace initiative promoting harmonious living and respect for all people and cultures.
Consistent with our Holy Cross charism, the vision at the time was that through the education of “heart and mind,” students were best suited to cultivate this diversity for a greater and lasting impact on society. This vision has continued over the years and remains just as relevant now as it was then.