More Youth Conferences

From the YouthLinkExpress newsletter, which is am absolutely fantastic resource for events and opportunities for youth development:

Civicus Youth Assembly
Date:June 16-18, 2008
Location:Glasgow, Scotland
Building on the success of last year’s CIVICUS Youth Assembly the 2008 event will offer an opportunity to meet and work with other young women and men who are really making changes to things that matter. The Youth Assembly will offer young delegates a program and a space to develop and commit to action internationally. Applicants aged 18-25 are encouraged to apply! For more information, click here.

World Youth Volunteer Conference
Date: March 31-April 2, 2008
Location: Panama City, Panama
Organized by the International Association for Volunteer Effort (IAVE), the World Youth Conference will select 100 outstanding young volunteers from around the world to participate in collaboration with the IAVE World Volunteer Conference. This year’s theme, ‘Volunteering for Human Development: More Solidarity, Less Poverty’ will focus on several issues related to Latin American poverty. Register before February 29th! For more information, click here.

Unite for Sight Fifth Annual International Health & Development Conference
Date: April 12-13, 2008
Location: New Haven, USA
Individuals interested in international health, public health, international development, microfinance, health policy, and public service are encouraged to attend the International Health and Development Conference. Keynote speakers include Susan Blumenthal, Jeffrey Sachs, Jim Yong Kim, and Sonia Ehrlich Sachs. Register today! For more information, click here.

3rd Global Youth Conference on Democracy & Political Participation
Date: February 20-22, 2008
Location: Lagos, Nigeria
How do we develop a culture of participatory governance amongst the citizens and civil society to build grassroots participation and accountability in governance? The 3rd Global Youth Conference will provide for focal discussion on the critical issues of enhancing greater demand for voice and accountability for better public policy and practice. For more information, click here or send an email.

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VoteEd – Educating Malaysian Voters

Election season is soon to hit Malaysia, and this time around things are bound to get interesting. With the recent rallies by HINDRAF and BERSIH, as well as other political and social events related to human rights, democracy, and national unity, young Malaysians have noticed the need to be more politically aware and that they need to exercise their right to vote and choose.

However, most of these young Malaysians are not experienced with voting. Many have only just been eligible to vote. Many others have not bothered to vote in the past because they feel that their votes do not count. Due to various laws and regulations, as well as the state of media here, there isn’t any clear unbiased way to find out who each consistuency’s representatives are and what each party stands for and is willing to provide.

This is where VoteED comes into play.

VoteED was originally started by writer and activist Michelle Gunaselan, as well as a few other friends, to combat apathy amongst young Malaysians towards voting issues. Their activities center around educating young Malaysians on their rights as voters and on their choices for voting, encouraging young Malaysians to register to vote, and holding discussions and debates about voting, politics, and democracy in Malaysia.

Currently they have a vibrant Facebook group, where they are collecting information about what people want to know about voting. The questions are quite interesting – ranging from whether it’s wise to vote for a party you don’t necessarily like if your local representative is doing a good job, to what avenues and channels you have to air your grievances and concerns about the country. This information will be the basis of a Voter Education Party, to be held in early January.

Join their group and get informed about your options for voting. You have the right to vote (unlike me – I can’t vote in Malaysia despite being here all my life because I’m not a citizen) so make use of it!

World AIDS Day – Take Action Now

Today, December 1st, is World AIDS Day. Even though this day has been commemorated for many, many years, there is still no cure, there is still much work to be done.

Get Educated: Pelf of The Giving Hands has an excellent post all about the basics of HIV/AIDS. Considering the amount of misinformation out there, it is still important that we know the facts and that we educate each other about the facts. MTV’s Staying Alive campaign is also chock-ful of information about health, testing, and advocacy, as well as ways to act that are fun and interesting.

Get Involved: The Malaysia AIDS Council regularly organizes events and activities to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and to help those affected by the disease. The “Volunteering” section on their site isn’t up at the moment, but pay attention to local media and events and do get in touch. If you prefer to go international, volunteer organization i-to-i has opportunities to work with AIDS-affected communities in Mombasa and Nairobi, Kenya. World Vision has resources for Christian college students, while online handmade goods store Etsy is collecting donations of gifts for Housing Works, America’s largest minority-run organization working with HIV/AIDS.

Get Connected: Youth activism portal TakingItGlobal has set up the HIV/AIDS Guide to Action Network, a collection of resources on youth working with HIV/AIDS awareness, advocacy, and care. They have also teamed up with some youth organizations to create the Global Youth Coalition on HIV/AIDS, which aims to empower youth leaders working with HIV/AIDS issues in their community. UNICEF also has a resource page on HIV/AIDS aimed on collecting opinions, experiences, and knowledge from world youth.

If you have any more resources for youth and HIV/AIDS, please post them in the comments. Thank you.

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The Best Thing Malaysia’s Education Minister Has Said Lately

Not everything can be taught in classrooms through a formal curriculum. Many values we hope to inculcate in students cannot be derived from books and theories alone. Students need to be exposed to real life outside the classrooms.That is why co-curricular activities are important. If we carry out activities in a planned and practical manner, we can mould students into well-rounded people who are balanced emotionally and intellectually.

Malaysia Education Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, on the importance of co-corricular activities

This makes me immeasurably happy.

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Carnival of Youth Initiative: Submit Now!

Are you a young person with a blog entry that needs sharing? Have you written about youth on your blog recently? Would you like to read and discuss articles about youth and their power for initiative?

If you are, then contribute for the 1st Edition of the Carnival of Youth Initiative!

Blog carnivals are essentially special blog events where a host blogger will post up links to other blog entries related to the theme of the carnival. Some examples of carnivals are the Carnival for Short Stories and the Carnival of Education. Blog Carnival has a full listing of hundreds of blog carnivals to participate in.

EducateDeviate is hosting the Carnival of Youth Initiative and I am currently accepting submissions. I am looking for entries about youth issues/youth initiative, as well as entries by young people with initiative (such as a project you are working on). I’m not accepting personal diary-type entries.

To submit, send in your entry through this Blog Carnival form or through my contact page. Submissions close 15th July 2007 and will be posted a week later. Edit: As clarification – old entries can also be submitted for this carnival; you don’t have to write new ones specifically for this (though you can if you want!).

Pass the word round! Hope to see your entries soon!

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