Arab Youth Centre launches ‘Young Arab Pioneers’ Workshops to engage youth in community service

DUBAI, The Arab Youth Centre has launched a number of workshops under the aegis of the “Young Arab Pioneers” initiative, coinciding with the sixth World Government Summit, taking place in Dubai on February 11-13, 2018.

Organised under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, the workshops celebrate successful young Arabs, recognising 100 young men and women under the age of 35 from across the Arab world, who have made great achievements towards developing their societies.

The workshops allow the youth to meet with influential global experts and decision makers to exchange ideas, ask the difficult questions, and bring forth inspiring ideas. The young participants will also lay action plans to solve some of the most pressing issues facing the governments in the Arab world today, proposing innovative solutions to support Arab governments in future-forecasting activities.

The sessions tackle a number of topics exploring four major issues and their influence in the lead-up to the year 2030, namely: slow economic growth; smart machines and consequent loss of jobs; new financial systems; and climate change.

The young Arab pioneers are set to discuss these subjects and their impact on the youth, as well as the challenges they pose and how to overcome them and support Arab governments in forecasting and preparing for the future. They will also explore opportunities for young people to work with their governments to launch programmes and initiatives.

Shamma bint Suhail Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, welcomed the participants, saying: “We are gathered here today, despite our differences; we have come here from different locations, with different academic backgrounds, and with different stories. We do not share the same capacities, sector of interest, or field of achievement. Yet we come together today united by one destiny, one dream, one goal; brought together by a shared hope and a shared dream.”

“H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE, Minister of Presidential Affairs, and Chairman of the Arab Youth Centre, has directed us to work on the Arab Youth Pioneers initiative, which is the largest undertaking of its kind to source outstanding pioneers from across the Arab world, and work with them to develop Arab societies,” she added.

“We grew up in a challenging region,” the Minister noted. “Our Arab world has taught us that life will never be without challenge. We must stand before the world, and show them that adversities are fuel for the determined and committed Arab youth.”

“Over the course of your academic and professional careers, you had big dreams and even bigger achievements. All of us here are an example of people’s ability to realise their dreams, to create hope for those around them, to build on all that unites us as humans, and to work hand in hand to build a better Arab world,” H.E. Al Mazrui concluded, calling on the young participants to always strive for excellence and positive impact on their communities.

The Young Arab Pioneers initiative is a continuation of the outstanding results achieved by the 2017 Arab Youth Forum, which hosted 150 young people from across the Arab world last year to identify challenges and pinpoint the priorities to be addressed.

May Mostafa, Director of the Young Arab Pioneers Project, said: “The Arab World is home to millions of innovators, success stories, and creative thinkers who have made their mark on multiple sectors. We scoured the region for these young achievers and shortlisted the best among them to join this one-of-a-kind initiative, which we hope would be the first step towards a bright future for young Arab innovators, a future where the youth themselves spearhead development and transformation.”

The first in a series of workshops planned for the World Government Summit was held today (Saturday, February 10, 2018), where participants discussed capacity building and the government’s role in securing employment opportunities for young Arabs, as well as providing adequate training for such positions and early counsel for students.

The young participants also discussed health and safety issues facing Arab countries and their effects on the youth and their future, before looking into solutions where the youth segment can play a part in mitigating these risks and promoting healthy lifestyles.

Community building was also on the agenda, where participants explored ways to promote a sense of belonging to society, which can be built upon to improve economic, social and individual progress. They considered ways to promote the use of Arab identity and self-awareness as a cultural bridge with other countries and societies.

Last but not least, participants discussed entrepreneurship as an essential tool that inspires millions of young Arabs, as well as ways for governments to actively support young entrepreneurs by providing an innovation-friendly environment.

Source: Emirates News Agency