The 15th Young Leaders Conference is all set to take off at DreamWorld Resort, Karachi from the 26 – 31 July 2016. It is a pioneering initiative by School of Leadership (SoL), to foster youth activism and leadership-training. This annual series of grand, insightful events was launched in the year 2002. Fifteen years later, YLC continues to change lives, enrich young personalities and groom revolutionary young leaders. With over 4000 alumni and over a million indirect beneficiaries from over 127 cities, towns and districts, YLC is the premier youth conference held in the country. The theme chosen for this year and revealed in early April is: ‘The Highway’. This theme combines independence and self-determination with a sense of responsibility, and embodies the YLC ethos perfectly; representing freedom with discipline.
YLC is supported by founding partner – English Biscuit Manufacturers (EBM), a dynamic organization with a long successful history of working for the cause of youth-empowerment, with great passion. Each year YLC opens its doors to over 300 youngsters from all over Pakistan, aged between 18 to 24 years. The participants usually comprise of 60% males and 40% females. Participants and various program segments have also been sponsored by; Thal Engineering Ltd, U-Report, UNICEF, Friedrich-Naumann-Stuftung and PPAF. These partners bring diversity to the conference, by taking up the responsibility of funding attendance-costs for the deserving participants, coming from underprivileged backgrounds.
YLC is a rigorous six-day residential conference that equips young individuals with the skills and knowledge required to become future leaders. Bismah Khan – the YLC Champ for 2016, has high hopes for the conference. She is assisted by an enthusiastic team of volunteers. She is mentored by Kamran Rizvi- Director at SoL, Umair Jaliawala – CEO at SoL and Waqar Ali – Head of Youth Affairs at SoL.
During the 6-day proceedings of the conference, the participants are mentored by over 50 expert speakers, scholars, educationists, corporate heads, academicians and trainers, on informative themes including; economics, environment, gender equality, development, and policy making. The generous cause-partners of this event; ACM-Gold, Fauji Fertilizers, and Mobilink are known for their devotion to the cause of inclusivity and integration.
The conference envisions breaking barriers and impacting the 60% youth population of Pakistan, that faces grave challenges, such as; underrepresentation and lack of opportunities to realize their potential and to explore a new world of opportunities. They need a voice and a platform to share their opinions and experiences, while enhancing their capabilities and competences in their chosen fields. The program is specifically designed to integrate career counseling and employability-training, along with a value system that allows the youngsters to become active and responsible citizens. The implementation of a Social-Action Project, within three months of the conference, is essential for all participants. The completion of this project is a pre-requisite to qualify for this certification.