Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) members in all 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states marked the third anniversary of YSEALI with a day of service called YSEALI YOUnified.
YSEALI members on December 3 conducted more than 100 community service projects across Southeast Asia to advance the key YSEALI advocacies of civic engagement, economic development, education and the environment.
In the Philippines alone, 33 youth-led community projects are planned nationwide, such as agri-entrepreneurship workshops for farmers in North Cotabato, psychosocial therapy sessions for persons with disabilities in Ilocos Norte, and English literacy sessions for out-of-school youth in Sulu.
In Manila the culminating YSEALI YOUnified event will bring together university student leaders to look at ways to work together to address challenges and opportunities for youth in marine conservation, social media, education and social entrepreneurship. select group of youth-led organizations will also showcase their development projects and opportunities through interactive exhibits.
To end theYSEALI YOUnified day of service, YSEALI alumni will screen a wrap-up video highlighting all of the 33 community service projects in the Philippines and highlights of other YOUnified projects throughout ASEAN.
In 2015, YSEALI members across the Philippines marked the second anniversary of YSEALI with simultaneous YOUnified service projects in 20 cities. Last year over 300 YOUnified volunteers engaged more than 3,400 Filipino youth on civic engagement and on how to work together to develop solutions to pressing local, national and regional issues.
Launched in 2013, YSEALI is the United States government’s signature program to strengthen leadership development and networking in Southeast Asia. Through a variety of programs and engagements, including US educational and cultural exchanges, regional exchanges and seed funding, YSEALI seeks to build the leadership capabilities of youth in the region, strengthen ties between the United States and Southeast Asia, and nurture an ASEAN community.
YSEALI focuses on critical topics identified by youth in the region, such as civic engagement, environmental and natural resources management, and entrepreneurship and economic development.