The Asia Foundation Bangladesh organized a three-day training from September 13-15, 2015, in CBCB Centre in the city for 25 youth leaders (Secretariat members of the YASC Youth Network) who were selected based on their existing roles as youth leaders and past or ongoing efforts to foster independent participation of youth in civic consciousness and promoting good governance, says a press release.
The training includes leadership, organizational management, communications, proposal development, and fundraising skills related to organizational strengthening and operational sustainability so that the Youth Network and member youth organizations are better prepared to implement activities and can sustain their financial independence. These youth leaders already seek to engage in issue-based, rather than party-based, development initiatives and have ideas of what they want to do, but currently lack the tools, skills, and community to achieve their goals and to resist pressure from political parties to politicize development issues.
The training curriculum and follow-up activities are designed to change attitudes and behaviors among youth and bring innovation and creativity in raising civic consciousness and promoting good governance. Prior to this training, more than 15 youth with disabilities from the Centre for Service and Information on Disabilities (CSID), Protibondhi Community Centre (PCC), and Physically-challenged Development Foundation (PDF), and emerging youth leaders from the indigenous community and Urdu-speaking minority community also attended training in Dhaka and Mymensingh.
Dr. Helal Uddin, Director of NGO Affairs Bureau, Bangladesh, Mr. Hasan Mazumdar, Country Representative of The Asia Foundation Bangladesh, Mr. Numan Ahmed Khan, Executive Director of Institute for Environment and Development (IED), Sanjeeb Drong, Founder and Executive Director of Indigenous People’s Development Services (IPDS), Adib Mamunur Rashid, Executive Director of Bangla Communications Ltd., and Minhaj Alam, Director, Democracywatch, were present at the closing event of this training. The honorable guests motivated the youth leaders to continue their good work to engage more youth to raise civic consciousness in Dhaka and Mymensingh as ensuring good governance requires the meaningful participation of youth.
The Asia Foundation’s Youth as Agents of Social Change: Authentic Civic Participation in Bangladesh project seeks to promote and support youth as agents of positive social change towards authentic civic participation in Bangladesh. The project will address the need for sustainable linkages between youth dedicated to changing the political landscape by creating an independent youth civic empowerment movement. Activities include the creation of a Youth Network (contains 25 Secretariat members and 720 community youth) in Dhaka and Mymensingh, providing training on youth civic consciousness, supporting a media campaign to promote youth civic consciousness and network expansion, leveraging ICT solutions to support project activities, and providing innovation grants to support activities for Youth Network expansion.
Youth as Agents of Social Change: Authentic Civic Participation in Bangladesh project is partnered with Democracywatch, Institute for Environment and Development (IED), Indigenous Peoples Development Services (IPDS), Bangla Communications, and mPower Social.