TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Members of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) have marked the 3rd anniversary of YSEALI on December 3 by organizing the largest day of youth-led community projects across ASEAN since the program’s launch. In honor of this anniversary, the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta held events across Indonesia to highlight the impact YSEALI has on local communities.
Throughout the 10 ASEAN countries, hundreds of YSEALI members have implemented community-oriented activities for the past three years. This YSEALI YOUnified celebration encouraged young people to be civically engaged and demonstrated the power of youth to develop solutions to pressing local, national and regional issues. At the U.S. Embassy’s premiere cultural center, @america, in Jakarta, the Embassy held a YSEALI talk show and fair to draw attention to more than 18 projects taking place around Indonesia that range from environmental protection, to youth mentoring, to promoting literacy.
During his opening remarks at the @america event, incoming U.S. Ambassador Joseph R. Donovan Jr. highlighted the broad participation in the YSEALI program noting the “nearly 18,000 members in Indonesia, and now 891 exchange alumni and 15,000 alumni from regional workshops.” He also praised the “innovation and dedication” of YSEALI members saying “the commit to your projects will truly make you the next leaders in Indonesia and ASEAN.”
Launched in 2013, the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) is the U.S. government’s signature program to strengthen partnerships with emerging leaders in Southeast Asia; to expand their skills as effective civic, economic and non-governmental leaders in the region; and to encourage them to work together across borders to solve regional challenges.
YSEALI includes all ASEAN member countries (Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam) and is open to young people ages 18-35. Responding to priorities from youth in the ASEAN region, YSEALI programs focus on four themes:
-Economic development and entrepreneurship
YSEALI opportunities include professional and academic exchanges to the United States, regional workshops for networking and skills development, social media engagement, and a grant competition to support emerging leaders’ efforts to address regional issues.