WORLD DAY OF CULTURAL DIVERSITY FOR DIALOGUE AND DEVELOPMENT: ‘DO ONE THING FOR DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION’

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All of us are part of something of greater importance and necessity; something we depict in our mundane lives. Our unique cultural identity and self-definition is formed by our knowledge, experiences, beliefs, and values. Nowadays we are privileged to witness cultural diversification frequently. For example, greeting gestures vary from person to person; from a wave, bow, handshake, nod, a bob, to tipping of the hat, these are just some of the various ways people differ.

The World Day of Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, 21st May, is specifically celebrated annually to remind people of the importance of intercultural dialogue, diversity and inclusion; build a world community of individuals committed to support diversity with real and every day-life gestures and; improve understanding and cooperation among people from different cultures.

We at World Assembly of Youth (WAY) recognize that the world, as a society built from integrity, is enriched with different cultures and people must understand that each individual enriches others' lives through this diversity. It is in our dissimilarity that there is a strength hidden and for every overlap of those differences, there is a comfort found.

A Senegalese poet, Yo Yo Ma, was once quoted as saying, "In the end we will conserve only what we love. We love only what we understand and we will understand only what we are taught. We must learn about other cultures in order to understand, in order to love, and in order to preserve our common world heritage."

Ensuing this, WAY preserves its role in not only encouraging but also works together with young people to look for commonalities in other cultures through dialogue. By recognizing, acknowledging and embracing these similarities, we become one intrinsic nature and value, we become united. We covet youth from all around the world to perceive the relation of cultural diversity and the ideal concept of unification; the more diverse the society the stronger the bond created.

Furthermore, we supplicate youth leaders and other stakeholders to foster cooperation in coalescing activities that result in tangible actions to support youth and diverse societies. We trust that such support from these important people in implementing the theme "Do One Thing for Diversity and Inclusion" prompts young people to express gratitude and emulate such action in their everyday lives.

At the WAY headquarters, we have over the years molded an environment which embraces the freedom for people; by accommodating inter-ethnic respect and fostering international understanding and cooperation whilst promoting tolerance, understanding, solidarity and cooperation among young men and women irrespective of race, sex, language, religion or political orientation.

We have started; How about you? With the contribution from all societies, the ideal world where cultural diversity is recognized and appreciated as a grace will be just a few steps ahead. After all, harmonization is realized when there is unity amongst individuals working towards building a cohesive society.