Dhaka was declared as the “OIC Youth Capital 2020” by the Islamic Cooperation Youth Forum (ICYF) on 25 December 2019, marking the commencement of a wide spectrum and dynamic engagement amongst the youth of the OIC and the Muslim communities spread all over the world. The selection of Dhaka as the “OIC Youth Capital 2020” coincided with the onslaught of COVID-19 pandemic. The activities planned during the initial design phases had to be greatly modified and augmented with the introduction of ICT technologies as the Youth Capital’s year commenced.
Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the Dhaka OIC Youth Capital 2020 in a virtual ceremony jointly hosted by the Ministry of Youth and Sports and Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 27 July 2020. The inauguration ceremony was followed by a two-day-long Resilient Youth Leadership Summit, where 250 selected youths joined virtually with expert panelists to formulate ideation on post-COVID resilience as well as the accountability and justice issue of the persecuted Rohingya Population.
To celebrate the Dhaka OIC Youth Capital 2020, ten other elaborate mega-events have been designed which will be implemented by various lead and co-lead Ministries throughout the year. “Sheikh Hasina Youth Volunteer Award 2020” has been planned as one of the mega-events which will be organized by the Ministry of Youth and Sports as the lead Ministry, with the Ministry of Social Welfare and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs being the co-host Ministries. The Forum is a global network of organizations/individuals involved in international volunteering, promoting the value of volunteering for development through policy engagement, mutual learning, and by sharing innovative and good practices.
This year’s celebrations come at a time when the whole world is fighting one common enemy, the COVID-19 pandemic in its full glare. Based on the world’s demographics, around half of the global population is under 30 years old today. These youth people are the most affected in COVID-19 pandemic as they are the most active stakeholders in the society in terms of productivity, mobility, and interaction, so this COVID-19 crisis is disruptive in terms of their lifestyle and prospects for their future. But challenging times require challenging measures. This crisis situation has also opened up numerous windows of opportunity for the youth to find alternative means in response to the COVID-19, especially for the more vulnerable communities and stakeholders in the society.
The youth are often labeled as the future. But during the crisis situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, they have shown that they are also the present and the most relevant stakeholders in building up resilience against COVID-19. They have been the first responders to the crisis situation almost everywhere in the world. From providing food and relief, they have facilitated emergency medical support as well as buried the dead bodies of the COVID affected patients when nobody else dared to. They have helped the health caregivers with free transportation and ride during the lockdown situation, showed great care to the stray animals, provided food for the duty heroes and the list goes on and on.
While development and humanitarian approaches still too often ignore the power of young people as capable agents of change, young people’s role in leading and shaping humanitarian response and recovery needs to be recognized as necessary, not optional. It’s time their efforts and contributions in combating the COVID-19 pandemic were acknowledged and recognized.
Bangladesh as a nation has also shown great resistance in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and got great success under the prudent and visionary leadership of the Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. So the Ministry of Youth and Sports of the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh wants to recognize the Indomitable Spirit shown by the Young Volunteers across the globe in response to the COVID-19 pandemic by organizing “Sheikh Hasina Youth Volunteer Award 2020” under the umbrella of the Dhaka OIC Youth Capital 2020.
- to recognize the Indomitable Spirit shown by the Young Volunteers across the Globe in response to the COVID-19 pandemic
- to appreciate the great resistance Bangladesh has shown in their successful fight against the COVID-19 pandemic under the prudent and visionary leadership of the Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina
- to encourage more youths across the globe to take part in voluntary and humanitarian activities
- to give the young volunteers opportunity to compete against and make connections with their global counterparts
- to give the young volunteers mentorship opportunity where they will get to learn from the leaders
- to make the youth feel an important stakeholder of the society
- to engage the youths in decision and policy-making level
The competition will take place in two stages – National and International.
The Award Categories are as follows:
- Most Inspiring Volunteer Story
- Most Impactful Initiative
- Best Innovative Idea
- Corporate Support in Voluntary Youth Activities
- Most Impactful Media Personnel
- Community Leadership and Service
- Environmental Response
- Act of Bravery
- Service Excellence
- Outstanding Youth Voluntary Organization
Competition Format and Timeline
Formation of competition format and timeline is under process.
Registration for international stage is going to start from February 2021