YES Programs



Celebrating Global Youth Service Day in Kosovo

Screenshot of Zoom screen featuring a powerpoint that says "Examples" and two guest speakers.

By Medina Bilalli (YES 2019-2020, Kosovo, placed with Aspect Foundation in Canton, IL)

One of the best parts of being a member of the YES alumni community in Kosovo is participating in annual events that help me improve my local community and grow as an individual — like Global Youth Service Day! 

This year’s Global Youth Service Day was celebrated the weekend of April 23–25. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we were unable to meet in person, so we organized an online event called the “Critical Thinking Webinar.” The webinar featured two speakers, Jon Syla (YES 2019-2020, Kosovo, placed with AFS in Yankton, SD) and his friend Artur Vllahiu, who are experienced debaters that have represented Kosovo in international debate tournaments. 

The speakers taught participants how to analyze topics and issues, break them down, and develop an argument. The presentation inspired me to further explore debate and the impact it has had on society and politics. In addition to learning about debate, the webinar was an opportunity to connect with fellow YES alumni and make new friends from among the 27 non-alumni attendees.

Our celebration of Global Youth Service Day in Kosovo was a lot of fun, and I am excited to see what we, as an alumni community, do next year when we can meet in person again!