My name is Fiona. I’m a Filipino-Indonesian currently living in Israel. In recent years, I have learned the importance of youth empowerment. In a country where conflict is prevalent, youth are often silenced. Debate for Peace empowers youth in need of a platform. Debate for Peace has enabled me to feel empowered as a teenager, living in a world faced with conflicts.
In July 2017, I had the opportunity to partake in an Israeli-Palestinian negotiations simulation. It is vital to acknowledge one of the most contentious, complicated and volatile issues of our time. Our delegation had the ability to meet people with a diverse array of perspectives regarding the conflict with the common aim of working towards a peaceful resolution. It is imperative to consider the agenda of this simulation, which was to bridge the void between different perspectives. The sole concept of a community of people striving for peace enabled me to restore faith and hope in conflict resolution. We spent two days with long hours, discussing different key aspects of the conflict. Despite the difficult concessions and negotiations, we were able to come to a peaceful resolution through initiating dialogues. This event was a paradigm which showed that peaceful dialogues can lead to change without resorting to violence.
The Israeli-Palestinian negotiations simulation was one of the many opportunities I have been a part of that have inspired me significantly. As an individual who strongly believes in coexistence, the importance of diversity and peacemaking, Debate for Peace embodies such beliefs for me. Debate for Peace has connected me and many others in the hopes of working towards peace through peaceful dialogue, activities and conferences. Debate for Peace continuously allows us to speak, inspire and change the world around us. To my Debate for Peace family, may we continue to change and inspire the world we live in and achieve our prospects.