The UAE’s Minister of State for Youth Affairs has launched last week her main initiative for the year as The Youth Circles. We interviewed two of the attendees to know their perspective of it.
With the country’s focus shifting on the youth, placing trust in their talents and capabilities, came the appointment of the Minister of State for Youth Affairs, Her Excellency Shamma Al Mazrui. Shamma is an Economics graduate from NYUAD, and an Oxford MA graduate in Public Diplomacy as a Rhodes Scholar.
Alongside trusting the youth was the creation of many initiatives, one of which was the Youth Circles, which held its first session last month. It involved individuals from various fields, between the ages of 15 to 30, to discuss their aspirations and challenges, and to brainstorm ideas and solutions. Sail interviewed two of the first Youth Circle session attendees Asma Al Janahi, (social media specialist, @AlJanaahi), and Hessa Al Jasmi (entrepreneur, @HessaKJ) to know what they think about the youth and the initiative.
1) The youth are generally viewed as inexperienced, self-entitled and un-motivated to achieve goals, do you agree with this statement?
I disagree with this statement, as I believe that today’s youth can achieve three times what the previous generation could, thanks to the opportunities and technologies available to them. However, what they need is passion, because without it, their work wouldn’t reach its full potential.
This ideology might be perceived by many people, especially those from the older generations. However, I personally think that with all the developments in the country, the new technologies, the media platforms, and the increasing opportunities that are provided by the country, people are becoming more open to the world and to the endless things they can do, they can basically learn anything, anywhere & anytime. We are noticing all those new talents and innovations which have been developed by many of the country’s youth, a lot of brands, technologies, & art in different forms have been developed at a very high speed.
Therefore, I disagree with the idea because I believe that things are becoming efficient by time, and the independence and responsibility levels have increased which gives our youth the ability to be creative and achieve their goals successfully.
2) Today’s youth live in a prosperous nation with vast resources and the trust of our leadership, how do you suggest they take advantage of these opportunities?
I believe that as long as they are diligent with what they do, the benefits will soon return to the country and themselves. They should also take initiative in pursuing their dreams and developing their characters; while the country offers countless opportunities, nobody will knock on your door to take part, you must keep an open eye and take every suitable opportunity.
I suggest people start with developing their own self-discipline, self-reliance, and self-motivation to establish their goals and develop plans and actions to achieve them. With such a distinguished leadership that motivates people to learn and grow and provides them with the best resources, people should be more able to keep track of their progress towards achieving their goals. All they need to have to have is the desire, the hope, and to set clear goals for their lives in order to achieve them and give back to their country, community, and family.
3) Having attended the first Youth Circle session, what was the overall trend noticed among the attendees?
I have noticed that most of them own their own projects and initiatives. A challenge that many faced was how they could maintain their success; they were all confident, however. What I especially liked was their outlook for their future and preparedness for future challenges; as many of them are involved in specialized fields that weren’t widespread in the country until recently.
What I particularly appreciated about the Youth Circles was that it involved a great collection of the youth, in one place, where they discussed mutual aspirations and challenges, and planned solutions accordingly.