– 33SIXTY SINGAPORE –
33Sixty is a leadership program that equips aspiring Commonwealth leaders (aged 18-30) with the skills and the networks to make a difference, now
During my venture to Singapore for the 33Sixty program, I couldn’t believe that my perspective of things would completely change. I traveled a lot, met so many people throughout my life and even visited Singapore before – I just never saw life in this light.
I traveled to Singapore for the program without any knowledge of how it would turn out to be – especially since I was the only one coming from an Arab country. I was nervous, anxious and barely had any sleep. However, upon meeting my flatmates and other members of the program, I was the happiest I could be.
I can say that being part of 33Sixty Singapore was one of the greatest events of my life; I met young, intelligent, strong-willed and like-minded people who have the incentive to change the world.
The program brought together a total of 80 young leaders globally and proposed a challenge in accordance to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 11: “What can our generation of the Commonwealth do now to make our cities more inclusive and safe in 2030?”
Throughout the program, we were sent to different site visits, learned to work together and engaged in numerous activities throughout the span of four days. We had the honor to meet Leaders who shared their insight and knowledge. Finally, we were assigned into groups, asked to apply the challenge to Singapore and propose a practical solution.
Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland, QC, The Commonwealth Secretary-General stated: “The world is facing enormous challenges; we need you to be part of the solution” Therefore, we were asked to implement the challenge on Singapore as a module.
Our team, Group B, came up with a sustainable idea that tackles one of Singapore’s largest underlying issues; immigrant and domestic workers.
Fortunately, and with collaborative effort from everyone on the team, The jury members selected our project as one of the top three and we presented the idea to Rahayu Mahzam; Member of the Singaporean Parliament. The whole experience was exhilarating, comprehensive and most importantly, unforgettable.
The final activity we had before graduation was choosing a person that inspired us most (individually). We each had to place our hand on that person’s shoulder without announcing it. I was so focused on picking my inspirational person (who happened to be in our group), that I didn’t realize how many hands I had on my shoulder. It was emotionally overwhelming and it resulted with tears in my eyes.
One of my favorite parts of the program was being taken into the city to explore Singapore’s local culture. Singapore’s Mustafa Centre was an experience that I didn’t think we wouldn’t have in Dubai. Seeing a mix of cultures embedded in one place was truly fascinating. The food, on the other hand, exceeded my expectations and I still find myself thinking of the flavors I got to try.
During the program, we were asked:
“where do you consider to be home/ what is home to you?”
Until very recently, I realized that I didn’t have emotional attachment to any place I ever visited.
I learned that to me, home was not a place, but a person. And during the time I was happiest, I realized it was because of the company I had. The people that stayed close to me despite not knowing very much about me or caring for our differences.
My home is my people.
On another note: 33Sixty is a program organized by Common Purpose, who also organized the Global Leader Experiences in Dubai. You can read about the Experience here.
Song: Sate of Dreaming – Marina and the Diamonds