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 Blog 

Blogs and Op-Eds by the Youth Co:lab team and contributors from our extensive network of changemakers. 

  • Writer's pictureYouth Co:Lab

A Young Innovator’s Insights into Championing Inclusion

Youth Co:Lab alumni and Managing Director of SpedGrow, Zoe Poh, was among the panellists at the 'Moving Together: 2023 Youth Leadership Summit', to empower and equip Youth Leaders with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities to become agents of change in their communities.


Zoe Pitching during the Youth Co:Lab Summit 2024 Demo Day
Zoe Pitching during the Youth Co:Lab Summit 2024 Demo Day

Through a panel discussion on 'Cultivating Innovative Mindsets', young leaders and entrepreneurs, including Zoe, shared their experiences, lessons learned, and best practices for being solutions-oriented to create inclusive environments where accommodating is a norm, rooted in empathy and understanding.


Here are three main takeaways of Zoe from the event:


Community Spirit

Being part of this event and sharing our journey with fellow attendees was incredibly heartwarming. It's not every day you meet people who share the same passion for improving the lives of those with unique abilities. There's a real sense of camaraderie in our collective mission.”


Meaningful Bonds

“I had the chance to connect with other enterprises that, like us, are committed to making a difference. One standout was meeting the inspiring team at STEPS Community. We discovered a lot of common ground and exciting possibilities for future collaborations. It's amazing how such events can foster connections with partners who share our vision.”


Fresh Perspectives

"The event was a refreshing reminder of how diverse approaches can lead to innovative solutions—hearing how others tackle similar challenges provided valuable insights. Seeing different perspectives in action is always inspiring, offering new ways to approach shared problems.”


The event closed with a panel discussion on Global Strategies and the Declaration on Youth with Disabilities that uncovered existing youth and disability strategies at a local, national, and global level, which opened a dialogue on the gaps and opportunities in strengthening policies and frameworks for disability inclusion.


The four-day virtual event was held in collaboration with the Special Olympics and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The event started with an interactive Movers Workshop on the Introduction of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to highlight the importance of global goals and the collective and connected ownership of all for an inclusive society. The event also emphasized the role of young people's innovative mindsets.



 

Co-created in 2017 by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Citi Foundation, Youth Co:Lab aims to establish a common agenda for countries in the Asia-Pacific region to empower and invest in youth so that they can accelerate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through leadership, social innovation and entrepreneurship. Read more about Youth Co:Lab here.

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