World Youth Alliance Asia Pacific (WYAAP) recently held its 5th Emerging Leaders Conference (ELC) from October 20 – 22, 2016 at the University of Asia and the Pacific (UA&P), Pasig City, Philippines.
This year’s ELC, centered on the theme, “Upgrading Earth: Maximizing Innovation for People and Planet,” welcomed over a hundred delegates from around Asia Pacific. Aside from the Philippines, participants and speakers also flew in from Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nepal and Vietnam.
Each day of the ELC also focused on a “sub-theme” to guide the participants in their three-day journey – What Should I Know? What Can I Do? Where Do I Start?
The first day of conference consisted of plenary and panel sessions with various speakers providing the delegates a clearer idea of the conference theme, introducing the importance of innovation, and instilling a mindset that places the human person at the center of development.
The second day took a more practical turn as the participants were able to choose their area of interest for more knowledge building and skills learning. Participants had the option to choose from Agriculture Technology, Nature and Wildlife Preservation or Tourism and Travel for the morning session, and Art for Social Impact, Campaign Building or Product Development for the afternoon workshop.
In keeping with the WYAAP ELC tradition, the second evening of the conference was a cultural night where participants not only got to showcase their national or cultural attires, they also got to showcase their talents. WYA Celebrity Ambassador Julian Trono opened the evening. It was also graced with performances from the UA&P Chorale and the Marikina Dance Guild. It was closed by a very moving speech from Janet Belarmino, one of the first Filipino women to climb Mt Everest.
And finally, to cap it off, the last day of the ELC consisted of another set of plenaries and panels aimed at inspiring delegates to make the first move. The day was full of inspiration from individuals making waves in their fields and businesses.
The three winners of the essay writing competition also had the opportunity to read their essay aloud in front of their co-delegates. The remaining finalists were also recognized and given special certificates on the third day.
The Emerging Leaders Conference is an annual event for young individuals to learn about the salient issues of today and how they can apply their roles as leaders through a variety of talks, workshops and interactive activities. Participants will have the opportunity to share their ideas and build networks with other youth leaders from the Asia Pacific region. It also serves as venue for the youth to engage in multicultural discussions and memorable experiences.
Conference parters included Batanes Travel and Tours, Cropital, ECHOStore, Grameen Foundation, Habitat for Humanity Philippines, Holy Carabao, Inclusive Mobility, Let’s Do It! Philippines, Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre, City Government of Marikina, Tech for Good Singapore, Tiklop Society of the Philippines, The Climate Reality Project, The Firefly Brigade, and Youth for A Liveable Cebu.
Finally, WYAAP would like to extend its gratitude to its volunteers and former interns, who played a significant role in planning and executing the event, and to the conference delegates, who continue to inspire the WYAAP community.
Watch out for WYAAP’s upcoming events!