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Aug 12, 2014

Columbia University Students Stage Youth Summit in Belize…

A couple of students from Colombia University in the United States are in Belize putting off a timely three-week program targeting youths between the ages of fourteen and eighteen. The first two weeks of the program focuses on intensive workshops for thirteen participants and the final week will involve school tours to provide leadership workshops for youths. The summit is being held to empower youths through social engagement, entrepreneurship and leadership skills. Dhvani Tombush is one of the co-facilitators of the Belizean Leadership Youth Summit 2014 along with Belizean American, Shanice Sanchez. Tombush says that they want to provide the participants the tools to develop the strength of their voices as youths.

 

Dhvani Tombush, Co-Facilitator, Youth Summit

Dhvani Tombush

“We are trying to help guide the youth through ways that they can engage with each other, how they can leverage their power as young people because we believe globally the problem youth have today is that they think they have no power. And they have no way that they can change what’s in front of them. And what we are trying to treat them and give them are tools which they can leverage to enter and present at the negotiation table so that they can change reality into what they want it to be. We know it is great to have activism and negotiation and whatnot, but it is also important for you to be successful in terms of money, business; those are all worries that we think about. So our second week of our program is targeting personal and professional development. Another thing we think is important is having to help them figure out how can you start your own business. What are the important steps in having a business plan? And so we have activities where we are going to put them in simulations where they have to come up with business plans with us guiding them throughout the process. So that’s essentially what the summit is.  I think the issue with youth is that we don’t believe in ourselves because we tend to believe that society doesn’t believe in us. So if youth decide to get together today and have a protest people think they don’t know what they are talking about; they don’t know what they are saying. So essentially what we are trying to do with this summit and also in the years to come as we have more people is to help them to understand that we do have the power, but what we need to let society know is that we are not just jumping on another bandwagon, but we’re coming informed. So teaching them the different steps to whether it is activism or business plan or whatever it is….so if someone asks them what you think you are doing or why you are doing this, they are able to tell them, I am informed I know exactly why I am doing this, I know what it is for and I know what I want to get at the end of the day.”

 

The funding for the project was made through the Davis Projects for Peace in the U.S., which provides ten thousand U.S. dollars to selective projects from university students for socially-conscious proposals. The Young Women’s Christian Association as well as the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports also assisted with the summit. 

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1 Response for “Columbia University Students Stage Youth Summit in Belize…”

  1. Rod says:

    Hope they are not raped or killed

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