The U.S. Embassy in Bandar Seri Begawan recently organized the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) Generation GR3EN Workshop which was held February 25 to February 28, 2017. The workshop was sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and funded through a Cooperative Agreement from the U.S. Embassy in Brunei Darussalam to AGREA for administration of the workshop.
YSEALI Generation GR3EN was a four-day workshop focused on eco-entrepreneurship, and included 50 delegates between the ages of 20 and 35 representing each of the 10 ASEAN countries. The delegates were students and young professionals with relevant experience and interest in the areas of green-business development, eco-entrepreneurship, and ecotourism.
The overarching goal of the workshop was to develop a dynamic generation of young Southeast Asian “eco-preneurs” who will propagate effective and progressive socio-economic development through regional and community “green networks.” With the expertise of key-note speakers from throughout the ASEAN region, delegates focused on green business components including environment, tourism, infrastructure development, economic empowerment, entrepreneurship, and program management.
The Opening Ceremony, which took place at the Radisson Hotel on February 25, was attended by Ambassador Craig Allen, with Guest of Honor, the Honorable Pehin Datu Lailaraja (Retired) Major General Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohammad Yussof, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports. Also in attendance were Heads of Missions and mission representatives from ASEAN member countries in Brunei; Brunei government representatives; and, NGO leaders.
During the Opening Ceremony, Ambassador Craig Allen commented on the workshop, “This event is bringing 50 remarkable youths from throughout Southeast Asia together to learn, share ideas, and initiate action on integrating businesses and economic development with environmental protection. This is a positive and inspiring sign that young people care passionately about the future of the ASEAN region.”
A special Cultural Night was also held on February 25, 2017, which was attended by the Honorable Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Haji Apong, Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism. The event also included special cultural performances by delegates from all 10 ASEAN countries.
On February 26, 2017, the group visited Sumbiling Eco Village in Temburong District as part of workshop immersion activities. During the immersion, the participants also took part in a variety of activities such as traditional weaving, jungle and river trekking, painting, and learning the process of preparing ‘Bamboo Chicken.’
On the last day of workshop, delegates took what they learned during the seminars, and applied their knowledge to develop their own real-world business pitches, with Team Aces and Team Ecotourism.com emerging as winners.
For more photos of the workshop, please check out this album on the embassy Facebook page.