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Cambodian youth given platform for empowerment

The National Youth Senate will perform this Sunday. Photograph: supplied

Meta House’s month-long Free Your Mind Festival will be putting its focus on Cambodia’s youth this weekend, with a side event titled “Long Way to Go” taking place on Sunday, July 22.

Organisers say the day will create a new platform for young Cambodian to interact and empower themselves, and each other.

“To help free the mind, there are many approaches,” said Johannes Kast, Free Your Mind Festival organiser and project coordinator. “We have introduced some creative cultural and artistic approaches, and this time it is something new – an educational approach for youth empowerment.”

Taking up the entire afternoon, Long Way To Go will consist of three main activities from different organisations and institutions: a playful youth program (dancing, role play and art workshop) conducted by Khmer Youth for Social Development (KYSD), presentations on youth perspectives toward Cambodia’s future development by the Pannasastra University Student Senate, and presentations of a project about life in the Andong relocation site and a play by Youth for Peace.

Top Sovannda, a 24-year-old PUC Student Senate representative, hopes the topics presented at the event will motivate young Cambodians.

“Each presentation will focus on different sectors such as education, economic and information technology,” said Sovannda. “The event will offer young people a chance to interact and encourage them to express their ideas in public.”

In addition to workshops and discussion, cultural groups will also take part in the event. The National Youth Senate (NYS), a network of KYSD, will perform a role play activity titled The Change of Life as well as interactive songs related to the environment.

“As one of the contributors of the event, we assist youth to discover their potential and how to contribute to the preservation of the natural environment,” said Pang Kimheng, secretary of NYS.

“We also hope the event will give them an opportunity to apply and practise their knowledge for their country’s development.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Chanvetey Vann at



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