By Sharifa Shubbar (YES 2019–2020, Bahrain, placed with AIFS/AYA in El Paso, TX)
I’m happy to be the founder of the Kalaam Debate Club. Kalaam, which means “talk” in Arabic, is the first debate club in Bahrain that welcomes everyone to discuss social issues and current events. While I was on the YES program, I took a class on public speaking and it was an eye-opening experience for me. This class inspired me to find a way to apply what I learned back home and share it with others. I noticed that we only have a professional debate team in Bahrain, so I wanted to create an opportunity for Bahraini youth.
Kalaam is a nonprofit club and enrollment is free. This club focuses on exchanging views and giving voices the opportunity to be heard. Kalaam started back in March and currently has 12 members, six of whom are fellow YES alumni. Meetings are held online weekly and we’ve had five debates so far. During our debates, we have discussed various social justice and human rights issues.
Kalaam has already been an incredible experience for everyone involved. We look forward to seeing what the future holds for this club!
To follow the Kalaam Debate Club’s updates, follow their Instagram page here.