While loving thy neighbours is preached, it is a long-standing fact that when we look at India in the context of SAARC nations, our biggest socio-political problems arise from just across the borders. Which is ironic, as one would imagine that a shared past and common culture would be points of unification, not departure.
It is, however, necessary to challenge long-standing facts. With this in mind, the first South Asian Youth Conference organized by the Blue Ribbon Movement, will take place from the 23rd to the 28th of May 2011, at the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore. The Conference will bring together 120 young leaders from across SAARC nations under one roof to debate and engage with ideas and issues that pervade our region.
The theme of the Conference is Peace: peace within, peace with others and peace with the environment. In order to get to the root of our problems, it is necessary to start on the same page, any page and what better starting point than the notion of Peace. Hence, the concept will be thawed with in multiple ways so as to bring about a deeper engagement.
In gathering youth leaders across borders and planting them in a common space, the SAYC hopes to build a common foundation as well as an informal network amongst them. This would lead to better internal relations through an understanding of a shared space, history, culture and politics.
The SAYC is a step moving towards a regional youth summit along the lines of the European Youth Congress. For the first conference this year, delegates from SAARC countries have been invited to India and are being hosted by the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore.
One of the primary reasons the Conference is being hosted at IIM-B is the focus on green business. As corporate responsibility in creating the green economy is a major point of discussion and action at the conference, what better place than India’s premier B-School to have this discussion?
Being the first in this series of conferences, SAYC 2011 has a handful of important functions.
Apart from being the first big step towards hosting the 2014 World Youth Congress, it will set the direction for all forthcoming conferences and discussions by youth in the region. This conference is a step forward in the government’s initiative to fostering better relations within SAARC.
The conference will also feed into the UNESCO Biennial Youth Forum, UN Intl. Year of Youth, Conference on Youth, Rio 20 — UN 20th Anniversary Summit for Sustainable Development and the 6th World Youth Congress on Youth & Sustainable Development (WYC-6).
Change is near. What better way to build for the future than starting with long-standing facts, and having them challenged by the potential change makers of tomorrow, under the umbrella of Peace?
Know more about the conference at http://www.sayc2011.org/.
DISCLOSURE: YouthKiAwaaz.com is an Online Media Partner of the South Asian Youth Conference.