“Learn, grow and giveback” a wise word I was once told right before I began my higher education journey, to which until today I try my best to uphold that principle. At that moment, I only thought to learn and improve myself the best way I possibly can to then one day contribute back to my family and my country. That was the goal or so I believed.

            Aspire to Make Changes

I soon realize that I was wrong. Global Peace Conference has opened my eyes to the vast capability that I have, to not only limit myself to help my country but to help this world. I have to admit, I was in my own comfort bubble before I joined this event; naïve and ignorant towards the current world issue. But I can safely say, not anymore, the next time I act, I won’t think, “What impact will this do to the people around me?” rather, I will bear in mind, “what impact will this do to the whole world?” Because truth is, we are all global citizens and should act towards creating a global impact.

The 7 day event was packed with valuable knowledge and experiences to gain and be inspired by influential and successfully people who had made their move towards building peace and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). “The youths are the leaders of today and tomorrow” the words of Ediola Pashollara that still resonates in my heart, inspiring me to start making changes now and be brave to rise up and start making a difference to the world. If we don’t, who would?

Like any other youths out there, I guess we all faced these few phases in life where we want to make a change and feel so inspired and ambitious to do it, but the problem we always face before we could move further is; where or how should I start? We began to feel lost and start realizing that our dreams may just be to impossible to be a reality and slowly the negativity will drown that dream to then be faded and kept away at the back of our mind as we continue on with reality and eventually that dream vanishes.

To those who had experienced such thing, and think that impossible is truly impossible and that we as youths don’t have the power or money to start something, here’s a lesson I’ve learned from this event. Start small and simple, you don’t need big, lavish and complicated ideas to make change; something as simple as volunteering and helping other is already sufficient. The success of the ‘All Lights Village’ to have helped improve the life qualities of the people started with just giving people solar-powered lamps and water-filtration bottles. But little do they know these small help and simple idea managed to also improve the security, education, business and health of the people. Simple isn’t it? We should be allowed to dream big, but we should always keep in mind that small steps are the way towards achieving that big dream.

“We are one family under god.”

“If everyone owns a dream, it’s a reality” said Dr. Hyun Jin Preston Moon, the founder and chairman of Global Peace Foundation in regarding the One Dream, One Korea. But I would like to improvise his words, if all of the youths in this world dreams to make a better world and act as one, the impossible can be a reality. We should all recognize our strength as youths and be brave to take up that role. The world is progressing every single day, so ask yourself this, if not now, when?


Written by Muhammad Ariff bin Rizal.