Reach Out To Asia's Annual Youth Conference Promotes Leadership, Learning and Global Citizenship | Press Releases

Reach Out To Asia's Annual Youth Conference Promotes Leadership, Learning and Global Citizenship
05 March 2015

  • Stage Set For Latest Edition Of Qatar’s Largest Youth-Led Summit

Doha, Qatar – 2 March 2015: Reach Out to Asia (ROTA), a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), has revealed new details about this month’s EMPOWER conference.

EMPOWER is Qatar’s first and largest youth-led summit, equipping young people in Qatar and the region to take active roles in building their communities and discovering a voice on global issues. This year’s event will be supported by Qatar Petroleum, officials announced at a press conference today in Doha.

Now in its seventh year, EMPOWER is organised by Reach out to Asia (ROTA), and as a QF member, is part of Qatar Foundation’s commitment to unlock human potential and build strong, sustainable communities in Qatar and the region.  The summit will focus on the important role that young people can play towards achieving sustainable development goals and this year’s special focus is on youth development for peaceful societies.

In less than a month, nearly 500 young leaders in Qatar have registered to take part in the three-day event that starts on 12 March at Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) Student Centre.The organisers have placed a special focus on Turkey, which is currently celebrating a bilateral Year of Culture with Qatar. The conference has attracted international and regional attention, with 300 young people expressing their interest and registering from 23 countries across the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, Asia and North America.

The event features a combination of seminar panel discussions from influential community figures plus keynote speeches, lectures, group workshops, off-site visits and a student public debate.

Speaking at a special press briefing alongside members of the event’s Youth Planning Committee, Mr. Mohammed Abdullah Saleh, ROTA’s National Programs Director, said: “This is a highly anticipated, critical opportunity for the world’s young people to talk about the issues that matter to them and learn from each other on how best to tackle these issues in their community. We are absolutely thrilled to see how EMPOWER, which started with around a hundred people in 2009, has become an influential force for change, resulting in powerful declarations crafted by the youth, which have grabbed the attention of leaders well after the event’s conclusion.”

Last week, the final selection of delegates was made by the Youth Planning Committee in Doha. The 2015 summit, entitled Peaceful Societies,will focus on three core tracks for young people between 16 and 26: personal leadership, service learning and global citizenship.

Recent events around the world have challenged notions of peaceful societies and forced a fresh look at what communities can do to improve human security, prosperity and happiness. ROTA’s annual youth-led conference aims to tackle this pressing issue by encouraging youth to take a more active role in promoting peace within their societies and across borders and encourages them to think about their role in creating a more peaceful world. The event is built on ROTA’s longstanding belief in the significant role that youth play in the development of their societies. This year’s EMPOWER pays tribute to that belief by providing a forum where youth can engage in a dialogue on creating sustainable peace.

Officials today also confirmed that popular Kuwaiti recording artist Humood Al-Khaderwill perform for EMPOWER youth delegates on 13 March. The event, which serves the dual purpose of preparing youth for the World Humanitarian Summit, is guided by United Nations development goals that address education for sustainable development, human rights, equality and peace.

Join the conversation on Twitter by using #EMPOWER2015 or get involved by clicking here: