Young Sri Lankan activist Ram Dulip has been elected to represent Sri Lanka in the 2021 Commonwealth Youth Council Committee. The only Sri Lankan candidate to qualify out of over 100 nominations from 54 Commonwealth countries, Ram is hopeful of victory following a vote which took place on May 24 and 25.
40 young activists were shortlisted for nine Commonwealth Youth Committee positions. Ram Dulip representing Sri Lanka is competing opposite Pakistan , Bangladesh , Kenya & Tanzania
“I have a keen understanding on the importance of gender identity and equality, youth advocacy, youth participation in leadership and community engagement”
Titled Mr. Sri Lanka for Mister Earth International 2018, Ram is a professional model, actor and a social media influencer with a dedicated and strong work ethic. The socially conscious activist is passionate to serve youth, especially from marginalised communities in order to uplifting their confidence and to gain a sense of identity and belonging. “I have a keen understanding on the importance of gender identity and equality, youth advocacy, youth participation in leadership and community engagement,” Ram said.
“Since my public disclosure as a gay individual, I was recognised as an influential person from the LGBTIQ community in Sri Lanka. This soon provided me with the opportunity to help break the stigma and silence against the discrimination of LGBTIQ community in Sri Lanka,” Ram recalled.
Speaking of his motivation to help youth in Sri Lanka, Ram said he draws from his personal experiences. “After being harassed on social media by local content creators, I took the initiative to spark action against the perpetrators which resulted in a movement across social media in creating awareness to protect LGBTIQ individuals from being discriminated and harassed for their sexual orientation.
I work as a team leader for ‘Me for My Self’ youth initiative campaign dedicated to promoting the mental health and well-being of young people in the Asia Pacific region . It’s a joint initiative of UNFPA Asia Pacific Regional Office Thailand and YPEER Asia Pacific Regional Office Thailand,” Ram said. For taking part in this directive Ram Dulip was awarded with a special appreciation certificate for using his own original content for awareness on mental health
A great leader is expected to be an effective communicator and strong communication skills enables one to effectively articulate and disseminate information throughout a community, he added. “I have a proven track record as a great communicator, mostly through social media channels where I have utilised my skills to be the voice of the voiceless. This initiative enabled me to reach out to a great number of individuals in local communities and help protect them against discrimination and also provide counselling on mental health and well-being,” he added.
If elected to the Youth Council Ram Dulip will serve for the next two years, representing the youth of 54 commonwealth countries. He is keen to serve as a representative of special interest groups and marginalised communities, which include people with disabilities, refugees and the LGBTIQ communities.