12 YES alumni participated in a two-day intensive workshop, “Engaging the Next Generation of Youth Leaders,” from March 22 to 23 in Manama, Bahrain. The workshop focused on leadership development and capacity building, and helped students explore their interests and formulate community projects. One of the participants, Batool Kamel (YES 2016 - 2017) shared, “I found it to be very insightful, practical and a useful workshop, full of energy and enthusiasm. The workshop helped assess my qualities and inform me about the areas I need to improve in order to be a good leader.”
The participants discussed their challenges in establishing community and developed solutions as a group. Utilizing a design thinking approach, the alumni came up with two to three projects that they wish to implement in the coming year, from gender inequality to animal welfare.
Two alumni from Kuwait, Farha Hamed (YES 2017 - 2018) and Nourhan Algammal (YES 2009 - 2010), also joined the workshop. The alumni from Kuwait enjoyed excursions led by Bahraini alumni into the country's primary landmarks, such as the Bahrain Fort, and tried local cuisine.
Abdelrhman Yassein (YES 2017 - 2018) shared, “The workshop really helped me understand the different UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and how we can help achieve them. Working with the Kuwaiti alumni was really motivating and I think the teamwork between different countries is really important because it helps share more awareness and build communities.”
Several of the participants are interested in projects that examine sustainable solutions for the environment. Ahmed Mirza (YES 2016 - 2017) shared, “The workshop really helped me identify how to apply my leadership skills to solving community problems. I am passionate about addressing plastic pollution through recycling.” Ali Albahrani (YES 2016 - 2017) also expressed interest in taking care of the environment, “The workshop helped me understand my purpose and passion. Through my project, I want to encourage individuals to recycle, take care of the environment, and make sure it's in the best shape possible.”
Farha commented after returning to Kuwait, “The youth empowerment workshop in Bahrain was what we really needed as YES alumni. It helped us figure out how we can start projects that impact our communities as well as identify and gain the skills needed to complete them. I saw the world from a different perspective. It made me figure out that I do have solutions for a lot of the problems in our world. After learning all these things I am planning to do a recycling project with the other alumni here in Kuwait.”
Batool Kamel (YES 2016 - 2017, Bahrain, hosted by World Link in Adel, IA)
Farha Hamed (YES 2017 - 2018, Kuwait, hosted by AFS in Apopka, FL)
Nourhan Algammal (YES 2009 - 2010, Kuwait, hosted by YFU in Minnetonka, MN)
Abdelrhman Yassein (YES 2017 - 2018, hosted by PAX in Niagara Falls, NY)
Ahmed Ali (YES 2016 - 2017, hosted by AYA in Naperville, IL)
Ali Albahrani (YES 2016 - 2017, hosted by ASSE in Jasper, MO)