YSEALI TechCamp US-ASEAN: Young leaders taking the next steps with their ideas

We hosted the YSEALI TechCamp US-ASEAN: Advancing ASEAN Advocacy in August 2017, for Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative members to develop ideas for advocacy campaigns on transnational crime, security affairs, and humanitarian crises.

Following the TechCamp, participants applied for small grant funding to support projects they created during the TechCamp. After a rigorous review process, the U.S. Mission to ASEAN, the U.S. State Department’s TechCamp team, and local partner Cultural Vistas selected six winning proposals:

  • YAS! (Youth Against Slavery) – This project from Brunei will act as a platform to raise awareness on human trafficking and modern-day slavery. The campaign will be in multiple languages to reach all in Southeast Asia, featuring a quiz, posters, awareness videos, and pamphlets. YAS! hopes to provide this awareness to migrant workers.
  • Think Before you Make Decision – from Laos, this project hopes to increase awareness on prevention of human trafficking. The campaign leaders will educate their target audiences through videos and in-class talks, targeting at-risk youth. They also plan to teach students how to avoid becoming a human trafficking victims, how to identify safe travel routes, and to understand issue of human trafficking in general.
  • #Stop Fake News #Cyber Bullying – Proposed by a participant from Myanmar, this project plans to create seven videos to address and reduce cyberbullying. By posting videos on social media platforms, the group hopes to teach people that cyberbullying can cause emotional trauma to people of any age, and to address the stigma. After watching the videos, viewers will be surveyed to measure attitudes about cyberbullying and cybercrime.
  • Awareness Campaign of Cybercrime and Transnational Crime (ACCTC) – This project from  Myanmar plans to combat the issue of cybercrime and fake news through a social media campaign. A website and video content will be created for the purpose of reducing fake news consumption by their audience. The videos will be posted across their social media platforms. After nine months, the team will conduct a survey to determine what people learned after being exposed to their content.
  • Video Campaign on Enhancing the Illegal Wildlife Trade By Monitoring Urban Communities through Digital Platforms – From Malaysia, this project aims to promote behavior change through targeted social media video campaigns. The videos will aim to bring awareness about wildlife trafficking to the team’s social media audiences. Viewers will be encouraged to report illegal wildlife trade activity.
  • Marawi Akn (My Marawi) – A participant from the Philippines will host a mini TechCamp on the island of Mindano. The project will bring awareness to the displaced residents of Marawi, specifically youth, to address the effects of the violent conflict there. Through digital storytelling and virtual elements such as livestreaming, this program will be implemented in cooperation with other youth leaders across the country. Overall, the goal is to promote interfaith and intercultural dialogue through both the in-person TechCamp and social media posts.

Congratulations to the winners for their innovative proposals!