It was a cloudy morning of August. Raindrops downed cats and dogs almost in every second. Downpour went even multiplied with the passage of times, later on. Still then the sun remained hazy..! But, someone drenched entirely felt the sun beam, saw the shine. Stagnant waters overwhelmed the city streets. Stranded vehicles remained craggy-whistling in muddy lanes. Moreover, pitter-patter noise penetrated in every nook and corner..! But, someone heard symphony instead; someone proactive rather gathered at capital’s Edward M Kennedy Centre—EMK Centre.
Enthusiast greeners sat messed up and sometimes glanced at ticking clock before the orientation began. Sometimes confidence peeped up in their faces; reasoned may be as they came across mounting hurdles; may be they were recruited as one of 80s out of 1200+ applicants home and beyond; may be they proved excellences to be ‘General Member’. You might guess already what I am talking about, yes; it’s about South Asian Youth Society (SAYS) orientation ceremony-2014.
South Asian Youth Society recruits freshers once a year in summertime. The new members represent diverse backgrounds who share fresh thoughts and ideas to bring about sustainable change to the society. And a grandiose celebrations welcome them beneath further inspirations and motivations towards their contribution for positive changes.
It was 10:30 O’clock in the morning as schedule little delayed. Almost everybody reached there. In the meantime, orientation started with festive presentation as SAYS PR Head Punna Islam greeted attendees. The program was matured through multiple sessions—unique Ice-breaking session introducing each other. Interestingly participants preset adjective as per the first letter of their nickname such as— Active Arafat, Rocking Rakib etc. This easy and effective method helped them memorize each other’s name within shortest possible time. These session also included portrait sketching—everyone standing either drew or drawn by sketches which looked funny sights and existed objects of eye-catches through the event. In addition to, brainstorming team culture and hanging out during launch sessions in the first segment made the members interact, communicate and share group dynamics. This time earlier it also introduced the prestigious ‘SAYS Fellowship’ challenge for the members amidst successful completion of certain fixed hours for the society. This is the first time in Bangladesh where a platform is proudly introducing fellowship for its members.
Later in the bit of workshop session, SAYS Senior Members and US State Alumna— Md Ali Haider, Masud Hasan and Ashraful Islam Rehan appeared in the scene. They came up with interpretative presentations on Cultural Exchange Programs and higher studies prospects abroad. This session disseminated information resources on why students should think about higher studies and exchange programs like—SUSI, NESA programs etc.
In the afternoon session, SAYS Founder and President Towfique A Khan provided motivational lecture—full of guidelines on 21stcentury skills development. He focused on changing patterns of skills and qualifications, crucially required for young generations in this 21st century to overcome all kinds of obstacles. Followed by him, North South University Sports Club President and SAYS Senior Member Rayhan Mahmud shared his experiences on what he gained as National Volunteer Coordinator during ‘2014 ICC World Twenty20’, held in Bangladesh.
Finally in the evening segment, Eastern University Pro Vice Chancellor and SAYS Adviser Prof. Dr. Abdul Hannan Chowdhury congratulated new members and hoped the regional platform will certainly help qualify them for upcoming age.
Towfique A Khan said, ‘SAYS continues its efforts towards educating, equipping and building the capacity of young generations with 21st century skills and cross cultural mindset. The young guns of South Asia have all the potentials to lead the world upward but our current context hardly gives them any space to explore their hidden talents and opportune for desired contribution for community building. It is the prime regional platform in South Asia which constantly connects, empowers and inspires the potential Young Change Makers of South Asia so that they can lead the 21st Century forward. Together we believe, we the youth can and will certainly build peace and prosperity in this region.’
‘Being the PR Head, I was amazed to see their intellects throughout the activities. We are proud and glad to have selected such an amazing pool of talents as our new members. The list will be enhanced with the addition of more members from the regional selection from the other SAARC countries (Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka). Together this bunch of amazing heads will surely contribute to a great deal to bring peace and prosperity across South Asia’, said Punna Islam while briefing with media.
Mustafa Amir Foysol, studying his undergraduate on International Relations at University of Dhaka, said, ‘the orientation program will be always remained as hub of great pleasure for myself marking proud membership at South Asian Youth Society. Being its member, opportunities disclose as it enables me to access a collaborative and exploring networks where I have discovered already spaces to design my desired career prospects and do something for my community as returns. The vibrant orientation proved wrong instead what I was preoccupied perceiving the program might be boredom in the gloomy state of weather. I didn’t even imagine that this orientation program will be so funny of interactions, educative, informative and worthy of motivations. I am very fortunate in a sense that the effective platform envisions me acquainting with a network of great enthusiastic and young reformist leaders who strongly believe the society and the region must be changed positively.
Senior Member Md. Nahidul Islam, studying undergraduate on Finance at Jagannath University, said mental health session in the orientation program provided some essential contents, thematic lecture and interactive clip screenings posterior of UN celebration of ‘International Youth Day-2014’. This year’s theme is ‘Youth and Mental Health’ under the slogan ‘Mental Health Matters’. This session will certainly raise awareness against the challenges and hardships the youth face today, prevent stigma, discrimination and social exclusion of the youth who are mentally disordered, implement policies to help them overcome the challenges they face, and to help young people into the decision-making process.
‘However, the unique features of orientation program will remain inscribed in memory across my entire life. Moreover, we, new members loved the way seniors inspired us and injected visions of prosperity towards upcoming days. Finally I would like to give my heartiest thanks to entire SAYS family for arranging such a nice orientation program for the freshers making the whole day memorable forever (August 14, 2014)’, said Manzurul Ahsan Arafat, studying at Notre Dame College.