This blog post is by Fernando Espinach, Second Place winner of the World Bank Essay Competition.
Standing outside the conference room, I'm thinking of how much I've learned at the Annual Bank Conference on Development Economics. It's amazing how in three days we have had the chance to listen to so many interesting and exciting analyses on issues that concern us all. Every day it gets harder to decide which session to go to, because in every one you're sure to find stimulating analyses and different perspectives.
Tuesday was the day the essay competition finalists presented their work to the jury. All the presentations led to one thought: that we, the youth of the world, can and must do something. The ways in which we can improve our lives and the lives of those around us are out there for us to grasp and develop.
All of the finalists had, of course, different fields of interest and different ideas on how to solve the issues that concern our communities. But we all agreed on one thing: that any action, no matter how small, can lead to positive results for the whole of society.
Tribal conflicts and migration in India, brain drain in Malaysia, the situation of foreign workers of the Philippines, students in Europe from non EU member countries. All are subjects that we can, in some way or other, relate to. How has migration affected your country, your community? Moreover, what could you do, on a small scale, just to start, to get better conditions for those affected? What's most important is that you never stop thinking and acting.
One thing that I've learned at the ABCDE Conference is the importance of getting together and linking your work with the work of many around the world. Who knows how these connections could help inform your personal projects? The Internet is key in this. If you're interested in any particular topic that affects your community, it's highly likely that another young person like yourself, elsewhere, is facing a similar problem. So get in touch with them, look for them. Look for all those that could build solutions with you. You'll be surprised to see how in Nigeria, Costa Rica, Canada, Ukraine, Zimbabwe, and in every other country in the world, there's someone who can help you solve that which most affects your daily life.
Photo Credit: Charlotte Kesl / World Bank