Yunus and youth
THE two juxtaposed Ys transfixed the world during the third Global Social Business Summit in Austria in 2011. Warner Faymann, chancellor of Austria, officially opened the ceremony. The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, had planned to attend but he could not due to a schedule conflict. In his place, Thomas Stelzer, assistant secretary general of the UN, came. He read Ban Ki-Moon’s message to the world. Vienna mayor Michael Hopp also spoke, energising the youth and basking them with the celestial romantic spirit of the city.
Representatives from 56 countries came to the summit. Some of them were diplomats, some government officials, some non-government officials. A group of young professors from Bangladesh came to the summit. Ministers from several countries also came. Around them, two prominent Ys constantly reminded them what they meant: Yunus and youth.
Dr Muhammad Yunus called for the use of human potential. The Nobel Peace Prize winner reminded the crowd about the human potential of seven billion people on earth. ‘But there are both disadvantages and advantages to this mass of people,’ said Dr Yunus. The disadvantage is that the population would continue to grow, one billion every 12 years.
On the other hand, the advantage is the unlimited human potential, Dr Yunus said. ‘We must harness this human power… we must also prepare to confront a struggle to achieve this.’
‘The young generation of today is the hope for tomorrow. We must target this generation to change our world,’ Dr Yunus reminded the crowd.
In closing the summit, Dr Yunus urged for the unity among the young people of the world. United they have become. Young people around the world are engaging in social development works and social business initiatives.
Jahangir Alam Sarker
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