Today over 29 Thai journalists attended the 19th YMCA World Council Press Conference.
With microphones and video cameras in hand they captured World YMCA Secretary General Johan Vilhelm Eltvik, the President of Thai Alliance of YMCAs Danuch Yontararak, and NGS of the YMCA of Chiang Mai Rachan Maneekarn sharing their excitement for the global YMCA movement coming to Thailand for the 19th YMCA World Council.
“The World Council meets every four years and is the highest decision making body of the World Alliance of YMCAs. We will be representing 120 members and 100,000 staff from across the world. Chiang Mai is going to be a wonderful venue for the World Council. The YMCA of Chiang Mai are amazing and the city is vibrant, alive and fresh,” Johan Vihelm Eltvik said.
The first World Council convened in 1855 with 99 delegates representing nine countries and now has grown into the largest youth movement in the world reaching 60 million young people globally.
In two days the World YMCA will welcome delegates from around the world from Albania through to Zimbabwe.
The World Council is responsible for setting the policies and direction of the World Alliance, electing its Officers and Executive Committee, evaluating the work of the last four years, and deliberating on priorities for the next quadrennium.
The World Council has made great strides in recent years by coming together under the banner of ‘youth empowerment’. This has included developing 700 young leaders from all over the world called YMCA Change Agents, who act at a community and global level to ensure that youth injustice is overcome and youth empowerment safeguarded.
The model is focused on empowering young people so they can change the world. We want to increase the number of young people reached by YMCAs to 90 million. Our theme in Chiang Mai is dedicated to our global focus and long-term vision of Empowering Young People.
This World Council theme builds upon the history of the YMCA and adds to its future: “Youth Empowerment 4 good.” Empowering young people is in the DNA of the YMCA global movement – and always will be. “Youth Empowerment 4 Good” is an ongoing commitment to our “4” long-term strategic focus areas – employment, health, environment and civic engagement – that address the biggest needs of the world’s young people. “4 good” is an affirmation of “forever” and also “for good works”, the result of our collective impact.
A second press conference will be held on Tuesday July 10 for the One Million Voices Research 2 Project.