YRDP held a forum on Glorifying Youth’s Awareness
Written by YRDP, Phnom Penh, September 7, 2011
YRDP held a Forum on Glorifying Youth’s Awareness through Understanding the Ways of Living of the Inter-Ethnic Races Living in harmony and peace in Cambodia on Wednesday, September 7, 2011, attended by more than 360 participants from diverse races, locations and university students at CAMBODIAN JAPANESE COOPERATION CENTER (CJCC), sponsored by AFSC.
At the beginning of the forum, Mr. Ream Rothamony, the Deputy Director of Youth Resource Development Program (YRDP), gave his welcome speech and opened the youth’s achievement exhibition inauguration before starting the forum programs. The forum was put in place two main topics focused on (1) causes, images and impacts of race conflicts affiliated with the recent nationalism situation in Cambodia presented by the honorary speaker Mr. Chhit Mony, the officer from AFSC and (2) what does each group of races have to do in order to live in harmony and peace together in a multicultural society? It was presented by the honorary speaker His Excellency Yuos Huth, Khema Cha Roa, the former director of YRDP board trustee. The forum topics were coordinated by Mr. Hang Soviet, the YRDP volunteer youth for Core Group. There were divided into discussion groups to find out the rooted causes and then to do presentation with comments and questions till the end of the forum.
As the results, all the participants gained more precise understanding in ways of inter-ethnic races living in harmony and peace together in a multicultural society, not discriminatory manner, cultural characteristics and understanding each of their cultures even if they were diverse races or located but it could have brought the peaceful messages to the local and world.
His Excellency Phikhoh Thach Sang, a Buddhist monk from Khmer Krom Community, stated in the end of the forum that this forum was good in Cambodia because it could help us understand each other and provide good ways for young people to avoid discriminatory manners in term of religion and race. He added he normally used methods of meditation to build peace in mind and sought peace for other ethnic groups. He finally recommended all the youth in the forum this day to bring knowledge from the forum to spreading out to other people who did not attend in the forum.
Coming from the same ethnic community, His Excellency Phikhoh Phon Suphin expressed that this forum was very beneficial to understand multicultural relations in Cambodia including different cultures, customs, and ways of lives. In his past experiences, he used to discriminate against those who came from Islamic communities; however, after attending in the forum, he raised his opinions as being the human-beings should learn from each other to build peace. Ending his speech, he added the peace was important. People should not keep discriminatory manners. They should share ideas from one to another and collaborate with each other toward peace.
Ly Abdulmalix, a youth from Muslim community, said this forum was good to learn various ethnic groups in Cambodia in order to live harmoniously in society. Previously, he used to encounter discrimination such a stereotype from the Khmer that Cham people has father as a dog and mother as a pig that was why they did not eat dog meat and pork. However, the discriminatory tendency was turned to be changed. In the following days, he explained the real things to his friends. Abdulmalix recommended good solutions for us to live peacefully with respecting each other, studying different cultures, keeping mind peaceful and forgive each other.
Math Asimah, the one of the youths from Muslim community, claimed she did not want to see discrimination among them due to they were Cambodians in spite of different origins. She said “this forum is good for me to facilitate the relationship among various ethnic groups in Cambodia. In the future, I want all Cambodians to love each other and cooperate to succeed our future goals and reduce poverty because these traits will help us develop our peace and live in the happy family.