For the 70th Independence Day which is to be held on the 4th of February this year (2018), the youth have come together in celebrating Independence Day for the very first time in Sri Lanka. Under the name “70th Independence and Youth”, the forum on the 04th of February, 2018 at Lakshman Kadiragamar Institute from 2.00 p.m. onwards is being organized by The Road to Rights Youth-led Organization.
Under this theme, the plan is to bring the youth together from various platforms to have an intelligent dialogue on many cross -cutting issues found in Sri Lanka. The National Independence Day is celebrated all over the country, mainly in Colombo, with parades, flag hoisting ceremonies and the nationally-televised speeches. However, the youth do not have any contribution when it comes to this except for the participation in the parade, made by schools. Sri Lanka went through many struggles to gain independence and this is something that every person must reflect on and value.
However, it is time for the youth to reflect on past achievements, especially bringing a discussion among the youth on where it went right in the process building a better future for Sri Lanka.
After Independence was gained in 1948, there were 2 major youth struggles caused in 1971 and 1981 and including the conflict in the North, altogether we lost more than 200,000 youth. Behind these struggles, the main point was the need to live, to have an income and to be employed. Through these incidents, Sri Lanka has been going through various social transformations politically, economically, and socially. Today in 2018, we stand on the post-war era where there are many transformations in the country. As young people, we have a key role to play in contributing to the nation building process while identifying ourselves as global citizens. This is why, as a youth-led organization The Road to Rights is bringing “70th Independence and Youth” to create a conversation among youth to identify their role in drawing the way to a sustainable future.
At the “70th Independence & Youth” forum there will be two panel discussions on some major points relating to the youth and the society and it will consist of three key speakers who will be delivering a speech leading to an open discussion with the participation of youth. There will be 150 young individuals representing leading youth networks, organizations, various sectors, as well as young professionals, young entrepreneurs, social media influencers, and journalists
We also plan on incorporating the outcomes of this forum into a formal document which will be presented to the President, Prime Minister, and other policy decision-makers in the country. It will also be posted on social media, blogs, and websites. Delegates will have the opportunity to interact with the speakers, while the forum will be live streaming on many websites. We will also mobilize young people to engage with the forum virtually through leading volunteer networks.
Making this forum a reality, the founder of The Road to Rights youth-led organization, Mr. Ashan Perera and its volunteers are behind this unique forum. The Road to Rights was established in 2009 in Sri Lanka and it is aimed at supporting young people towards creating opportunities, skills development, creativity, and innovation by taking a human rights-based approach towards peace and development. The Road to Rights is a key partner in promoting Sustainable Development Goals through the activities of the organization. Taking another step towards humanity and human rights education, Road to Rights have yet again come up with another initiative to bring in youth together and make a better Sri Lanka.
The Road to Rights is giving the youth reading this, a chance to participate in this forum.
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“70th Independence and Youth”, the forum on the February 04 at Lakshman Kadiragamar Institute from 2.00 pm onwards organized by The Road to Rights Youth-led Organization