BYLC’s Youth Leadership Summit: Day 3 focuses on the role of youth in building an inclusive society

Bangladesh Youth Leadership Center (BYLC)'s Youth Leadership Summit 2021 kicked off on August 4, with a focus on diversity and inclusivity. The virtual event, supported by Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) of the UK, brought together over 300 delegates from 149 educational institutions across 45 districts for a four day leadership training, discussion on social issues and collaborative activities.

The theme of this summit is 'Journey towards an inclusive Bangladesh'. BYLC held the third day of the summit on August 6. The day began with a debrief of the previous session and discussion on leadership, followed by Plenary: Role of youth in building an Inclusive society and Workshop: Translating Vision into Action II.

The first session of the third day kicked off with reflecting on the key takeaways of the previous session. Throughout which, session instructor Sudipta Das Shuva took questions from previous day and answered them, followed by content on types of problems (adaptive vs technical) and building on which type of problems require an act of leadership.

The second session was 'Plenary: Role of youth in building an inclusive society'. This session rang up the curtain on the stories of youth leaders who have taken initiatives to address issues of disparity and inequality. The panelists in the plenary were Salman Khan Yeasin, Arafat Noman, Shomy Hasan Chowdhury, and Lamea Tanjin Tanha. They shared their reasons for starting their initiatives.  Participants also engaged in a Q&A session with the speakers.

Here are some excerpts from the discussion:

Salman Khan Yeasin, Head of Image and Communication, Bidyanondo Foundation, BYLC YLS Graduate

We need to utilise the collective power to eradicate socio-economic struggles. We need to dissolve societal developmental hindrances such as early marriage, early drop out from schools,hunger and poverty barriers. We need to delve deep and observe the problem to execute effective solutions.

Arafat Noman, Assistant Commissioner and Executive Magistrate, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh

Majority of our youth is not aware enough about pervasive barriers and fail to raise their voices due to it. We need to observe every problem to a much deeper level to solve it. Things are not always the way they look. The youth needs to realise what to raise our voices against and how to raise our voices. We need to nurture our critical thinking skills and confidently raise our voices after properly researching the pervasive problems and barriers.

Shomy Hasan Chowdury, Co-founder, Awareness 360, Forbes 30 under 30 Asia, 2021

In order to bring positive change, we need to realise our roles in developing the country. We need to build our nation step by step daily. We need to unlearn and relearn collaboratively, diminishing self-doubt to move forward and dissolve problems regarding hygiene and other socio-economic barriers, for development.

Lamea Tanjin Tanha, Founder and CEO, TransEnd

The youth of Bangladesh is motivated to positively change our society. We need to work together to uproot problems not only  regarding gender binaries but also other social,cultural, and economical hindrances. My experiences shaped me to exercise empathy towards human beings regardless of their background, ethnicity, and culture. I encourage the youth to empower the marginalised communities through their actions. I encourage the youth to listen to their story and share their positive reflections through their formative initiatives. As a leader, you need to remind yourself of the reason for your passion. This will encourage you and stop you from giving up.

During the third and final session on 'Workshop: Translating Vision into Action II', the instructor spoke about developing online campaigns and launching them across social media successfully. The day ended with a team building activity.

The author is a freelance journalist. Email: [email protected]


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