Rural Youth Summit contributes to empowering youth in the digital age 

PESHAWAR: The three-day Rural Youth Summit came to a resounding conclusion with the enthusiastic and exuberant participation of women community members from the Pakistan Community Support Project (PCSP) implementation areas. The female students from the universities and colleges particularly based in Khyber, Peshawar, Nowshera, and the adjoining areas were also in attendance. The RYS is a collaboration of the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the World Bank to provide a transformative platform for young people, both men and women, to explore and enrich their future development opportunities. 

The RYS team comprising the PCSP and World Bank representatives designed the event that comprised engaging panel discussions and mentoring sessions with key experts to enlighten the youth about the boundless potential of digital technology, including opportunities to startup their own businesses. A special focus was given to the empowerment of women, with female speakers sharing their inspiring stories. 

One of the keynote speakers, Samar Khan, a professional cyclist, and founder of Samar Camp, inspired the female audiences with her journey and stated, “Everything is possible if we pursue our dream. There is no distinction between men and women, and all of us are equally capable”. Several women role models, public influencers, startup owners, and social changemakers were invited on the third day who spoke to the audiences regarding their personal journey with reference to the experiences, challenges, and opportunities that they have had. 

The speakers included a renowned list of women leaders from different sectors including Shamama Arbab co-founder Euro Industries, Aasia Khan the caretaker minister for Social Welfare, Ayesha Khan from Hashoo Foundation, Kiran Shah from KSB Calligraphy, among other eminent speakers and experts. The three-day event would be packed with engaging panel discussions on vital topics with experts in their respective fields, providing exposure to new technologies that are on display, including augmented reality and artificial intelligence, as well as live workshops led by some of the most sought-after tech professionals coming from all over Pakistan. 

The RYS, hosted by the Pakistan Community Support Project has witnessed the enthusiastic participation of thousands of young men and women from all parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa who were imparted with valuable personal experiences, provided with professional opportunities, and engaged in digital activities. One of the female students from Nowshera who visited the RYS shared, “We experienced such an event for the first time and learned a lot about the digital world, helping us to understand how to establish our businesses online.” Another student from Khyber who was also present at the RYS stated that they had limited knowledge about the latest technologies and many more were unfamiliar with them. By joining this summit, they affirmed that they recognized that lives have become incredibly convenient with technology.

As a testament to the summit’s resounding success, the PCSP also gave acknowledge certificates and other giveaways to the community participants and RYS attendees. The RYS will also go a long way in empowering the young entrepreneurs and budding startups from Khyber, Peshawar, Nowshera, and the adjoining areas to further push the boundaries of the digital landscape. The RYS has proven to be an eye-opening experience, effectively bridging the gap between rural communities and the prevalence of digital opportunities.


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