Throughout our “Voice Your Mind” youth advocacy programme 15 young people from Syria, Uganda, oPT, Gaza, South Sudan and Colombia have been educated to become not only youth ambassadors for War Child, but also leaders in their own community. From June until October 2020 they participated in expert workshops on MHPSS (Mental Health & Psychosocial Support), storytelling, speaker coaching, content creation, media training, activism, campaigning and leadership & community and produced their own videos about their powerful stories or a topic that they thought was important to speak up about.
The outcome of the programme was simply amazing, like the videos of the youth ambassadors show. Not only did the young people, who all have experienced armed conflict at some point in their life and / or are displaced or have been a refugee, gain confidence and courage to speak up and find friends from all over the world, who have made similar experiences, they also experienced the healing power of “voicing your mind”.
“It was the first time I was able to share a painful story and I realized that you can heal another person through that” says War Child youth ambassador Lillian from South Sudan.
The final highlight of the Voice Your Mind programme 2020 was the online youth conference that took place on World Mental Health Day, the 10th of October. Completely digital through Zoom and Facebook Live we were able to bring many people from all over the world together in one room and co-create visions and action-plans for the future. Hosted by War Child Germany and realized in cooperation with “Aurubis”, many great speakers were inspiring all participants – among them Stefanie Klein from Aurubis, who talked about the importance of taking social responsibility as a company, and Tijmen Rooseboom, Ambassador for Youth, Education and Work at the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
A central part of the youth conference was to give the stage to our youth ambassadors who had prepared inspiring speeches and the possibility to share their videos with the world. “It had a magical spirit, a beautiful energy, many heart to heart moments and was deeply touching” says Youth Ambassador Homam about the conference – and we couldn’t agree more!
Thank you to all of our engaged Youth Ambassadors and our partner Aurubis.
You can watch parts of the conference and all the speeches from the Youth Ambassadors in this playlist!