Message from the Asia Pacific Regional Office Welcome to the September 2012 edition of Asia Pacific e-Newsletter. This past month has been exciting with the inaugural Global Award Holders' Network (GAHN) workshop held in Singapore, the International Award Foundation's participation at the 18th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers (18th CCEM) in Mauritius and at the Olympic Games, a One Award Alliance pilot project visit to Korea and a joint training event with the Pacific Youth Council. We also preview Award involvement in International Youth Day, Diamond Jubilee Celebrations, APEC Leaders Week 2012, progress of the online record book and training projects along with stories from New Zealand and Timor-Leste.
In the past month we have welcomed Kathleen Hewitt who commenced in the new post of Regional Communications, Development & Events Coordinator and Francelline (France) Jimenez as Development Officer, Philippines. We say farewell and recognise the services of Senerath Kahandaliyanage as the outgoing Chairman in Sri Lanka and Sayed M.A Karim from the Bangladesh Award.
Inaugural GAHN workshop, SingaporeA successful inaugural Gold Award Holders' Network (GAHN) leadership and capacity building workshop was held at the National Community Leadership Institute in Singapore from 16 to 20 August, kindly hosted by the National Youth Achievement Award (NYAA) Council of Singapore and supported by the NYAA Gold Award Holders' Association (GAHA). The workshop brought together youth delegates from the Africa, Americas, EMAS and Asia Pacific regions to participate in dialogue on 'Servant Leadership', interact with Ministers, MPs and youth leaders and discuss tangible and strategic contributions towards the future development of the GAHN.
The youth delegates focused on ways to further establish the GAHN by delivering outcomes on how to create future award network opportunities and alumni networks, engage awardees in Life after Gold community activities and advocacy projects and strengthen relationships between Gold Award Holder Associations and NAAs. Download the special report. A full report will be available in October.
Regional Communications, Development & Events Coordinator Kathleen Hewitt (pictured on left with Katie Hulmes) has joined the Asia Pacific office as the new Regional Communications, Development & Events Coordinator from 6 August. She has previously held project officer and administrative positions in a range of industries including with the Australian Award (NSW Division). Of her new role Kathleen says, "My first month with the Award family has been a whirlwind of a ride! From Sydney, to Singapore to the Solomon Islands, I have had the opportunity to meet with awardees, operators, volunteers, supporters and staff across the regions. I have been blown away by the passion, enthusiasm and dedication from all stakeholders to ensure the Award is available to all".
18CCEM Youth Forum: Be The Change, MauritiusThe Conference of the Commonwealth Education Ministers (CCEM) is held every three years with the 18th CCEM and a parallel four-day Youth Forum taking place from 28–31 August 2012 in Pailles, Mauritius. The Minister of Youth and Sports for Mauritius delivered the keynote address and recognised the youth forum theme 'Be the Change' as befitting the aspirations of any country which relies on its youth to showcase their creativity and skills and get involved in the designing and making of public policies. The International Award Foundation (IAF) was represented by Executive Director: Programme Cristal de Saldanha (pictured) and Africa Regional Director Edwin Kimani. Award holders from Uganda, Mauritius and Singapore attended along with Vanuatu Gold participant and deputy chair of the Pan-Commonwealth Youth Caucus Rebecca Solomon.
One Award Alliance pilot project, Korea As part of the global One Award Alliance (OAA) project, a visit was made by Alliance Project Director Steve De Wint and Regional Director Sue Walker to Seoul, Korea, from 12–16 August 2012. The OAAis the strategy for improving and growing the International Award. The project is scheduled for completion in May 2013. At that point, the changes will be implemented as part of the new strategy for the Award. Currently the new ‘tools’ are on trial with various selected countries and all the changes will be presented at Forum 2012 in Malta. Korea Youth Work Agency is helping the IAF to run a trial of the new standards and the new quality assurance process.
Online record book pilot workshop, CanadaA very successful and encouraging review of the first working prototype of the international online record book has just been concluded as part of a week's planning session hold in Toronto, Canada. The online record book pilot country workshop provided valuable feedback which will be used to finalise the prototype and then enable the terms and conditions regarding rolling out to National Award Authorities to be determined. The Australian and New Zealand NAAs were represented by Peter Kaye, Kevin Plant and Cindy Naresh. Read more on the online record book and how it is helping the Canadian Award to better understand participants and leaders. Welcome Philippines Development Officer France Jimenez has commenced as Development Officer Philippines based in Manila from 28 August 2012. France is a youth and cultural worker who has worked with various initiatives and projects in the Philippines. Previously France worked in research and corporate communications for five years. She studied Political Science in the University of the Philippines Diliman and says of her new role, "I am excited to connect with more young leaders around the world, as well as find more young people in my country who would willingly step up and do their share in shaping our country to what we want it to be. I believe the Award will provide them with the agency to do just that".
Award Holders at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic GamesFrom athletes competing to Olympic flame carriers, congratulations to all Award participants and holdersinvolved in the recent London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Games. Among the competitors in the Olympic Games was weightlifter Helena Wong, an NYAA Gold Award holder from Singapore. Helena competed in the female 53kg weight class and placed 15th. Gold Award holder Henry Wanyoike is blind and representing Kenya in the Paralympics marathon racing. After participating in the Award at a technical school for the blind and striving to achieve his Gold Award over 18 months, Henry realised he could become a role model for his community. Read Henry's remarkable story on the International Award website.
International Youth Day: Building a better world
The United Nations (UN) International Youth Day is celebrated on 12 August each year to recognise efforts of the world's youth in enhancing global society. It also aims to promote ways to engage them in becoming more actively involved in making positive contributions to their communities. The 2012 theme was 'Building a better world, partnering with youth'. Vanuatu marked the occasion with the first local Award leader training, a follow-up to the recent training for trainers in Fiji. Twenty-one young people and youth leaders attended. They will work with a group of youth and be mentored by Vanuatu National Youth Council and Award leaders Rebecca Solomon and Joe Kalo.
Pacific Youth Council Award Leader Training follow-up
To build the capacity of Pacific countries to deliver the International Award, Regional Programme Manager Rob Oliphant recently conducted a pilot Youth Training Youth–Training for Trainers (YTY–T4T) workshop at the Pacific Theological College in Suva, Fiji, on16–18 July in partnership with the Pacific Youth Council (PYC). There were eight Pacific Island nations represented at this workshop. Since returning to their home countries, these enthusiastic Award leaders have delivered Award workshops in Vanuatu, Tonga, Cook Islands, Marshall Islands and the Solomon Islands. A follow-up is planned in 2013 and a new Pacific Award Network has been established.
Diamond Jubilee Celebration Events
The NYAA Singapore and International Award for Young People, Solomon Islands will engage in events as part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations and royal visit in September 2012. Our thanks to regional partner the Commonwealth Youth Programme Pacific Centre based in Honiara for the collaboration on two major youth events in the Solomon Islands. A week-long Commonwealth Pacific Youth Leadership and Integrity Conference will commence on 15 September and a Gold Award ceremony will be held on 17 September. Award Leader training will also be co-facilitated by Valeriano Kwany, Theresa Keninakua and Harry James with Peter Kaye at CYP on 18 September.
APEC Leaders Week 2012, Russia
The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders Week will be held in Vladivostok, Russia from 2–9 September. The NYAA Council of Singapore will lead a 25-member delegation comprising youth leaders from 11 APEC Member Economies to the APEC Youth Summit from 2–4 September, APEC SME Summit from 5–6 September and APEC CEO Summit from 7–9 September. The APEC CEO Summit will be opened by H.E. Vladimir Putin, President of Russia Federation on 7 September at the Far Eastern Federal University in Russky Island. The Australian delegation comprises Hannah Glass (pictured), Anania Tarago and Byron Hewson.
Peace Promotion Project, Timor-Leste
Ba Futura, as an Independent Operator, has been actively encouraging young people in Timor-Leste to participate in the International Award since 2010. There are now over 80 young people undertaking their Awards. In 2012 Ba Futura is engaged in a Peace Promotion Project, which is an extension of peace on conflict resolutions projects funded by the German Institute of Foreign Affairs. Over a one-year period the project will focus on empowering two groups of twenty at-risk youth as agents for peace. They will also have the opportunity to engage in the Award. Our thanks to Ba Futura for sharing updates on the latest Adventurous Journey activity to Balibo and Aileu (pictured).
Project Vision Challenge, New Zealand
The Asia Pacific region team congratulates Sean Edwards from New Zealand whose inspirational storyhas been showcased as part of the Peter Cruddas Initiative which recognises Award participants who have used the Award to change people's lives. At the age of 11, Sean lost his sight in a medical accident. Initially he found this very hard to come to come to terms with, but then determined to strive to not let it affect his life.Sean started playing goalball – a team sport for visually impaired athletes – and continued for the Physical Recreation section of his Duke of Edinburgh's Hillary Award. He then set up Project Vision Challenge as part of his Silver Award.
Online Award Leader Training (OALT)
The development of an Online Award Leader Training(OALT) system is set to revolutionise the running of the Award. A pilot of modules 1 to 4 will commence at the end of September, using the month of October for users to test the system. A survey has been designed and will be available on Survey Monkey for testers to provide feedback. A number of NAAs, IOs and Regional Training Panel members from across the region will participate in the process. During November feedback and data will be gathered prior to the launch at Forum 2012, Malta. The OALT working party team will meet in London after the Forum to design modules 5 to 12. Read more on the OALT pilot project in Kenya.
Australian Reception at Government HouseAs part of their 50th Anniversary celebrations, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award in Australia held a reception at Government House, Sydney on 14 August to recognise long-serving Award volunteers including former National Chairman, The Hon. Larry Anthony and the recently launched Australian Alumni organisation. Hosted by H.E. Professor Marie Bashir, Governor of New South Wales, each volunteer was presented with a plaque commemorating their service. The newly appointed National Chairman, The Hon. Shane Stone gave an address highlighting the Award’s vision: that all young Australians have the opportunity to explore their potential and be recognised for that. The profound effect on local communities was reflected by Michael Marino.
Leadership and Value: Girl Guides Annual Lunch The Australian and regional teams joined supporters for the annual Girl Guides NSW & ACT Lunch 2012 at Parliament House Sydney on 30 August. Guest speaker Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn from the NSW Police Force highlighted the importance of leadership and values, and shared her experience in leading the changing of culture in a workforce of 20,000 staff. She emphasised that it is not the business plan or KPIs but sense of pride and passion that have been instilled and driven new customer service impacts. Guides State Commissioner Belinda Allen provided an update on a year of change including a new promise for the Guides in Australia.
Training Opportunities in the Asia Pacific region
The Asia Pacific regional office will be delivering an Award leader training workshop for new leaders on Tuesday 18 September at the Canadian International School in Beijing. Additional Training for Trainers (T4T) workshops for experienced Award leaders will be held at the Western Academy of Beijing on 21–23 September, in Dhaka on the 5–7 October and at the Smak 1 BPK Penabur Tanjung Duren School in Jakarta on the 19–21 October. For further information regarding these workshops please contact Rob Oliphant, Regional Programme Manager at the regional office.