The Commonwealth Students’ Welfare Group of India (CSWGI), in collaboration with One Better World (OBW) Bangladesh, organised the first India-Bangladesh Commonwealth Youth Conclave (IBCYC) on 09 – 10 July 2018 at the British Council auditorium in Dhaka. The theme of the conference was “Youth as Agents of Change – developing a Commonwealth Partnership”.

H.E. Dr Shri Biren Sikder, MP, Minister of State, Youth and Sports, Government of Bangladesh was the chief guest. Dr Maisha Reza, Chairperson, Commonwealth Students Association (CSA) was the distinguished guest of honour, along with Mr Tawseef Mannan Khan, Regional Coordinator, Commonwealth Scholarships and Fellowship Programme (CSFP), British Council Bangladesh and Mr Anubhav Somra, Founder, Australasian Network Undertaking (Australia & India). Other distinguished speakers included Queen’s Young Leaders winners and runners-up and RCS Associate Fellows, Mr Shamim Ahmed (QYL-RU 2015) Mr Osama Bin Noor (2016), Mr Rahat Hossain (2017) and Mr Amiya Parapan Chakra Borty (QYL-RU 2017). The conference was inaugurated with welcome speeches of Mr Hari Om Dahiya, President & Youth Chairman CSWGI; RCS Regional Youth Coordinator, and Ms Sadia Haque Jui, Founder, One Better World (OBW) Bangladesh.

The two-day long event consisted of multiple debating sessions focusing on socio-political Commonwealth issues between India and Bangladesh, the development of youth, IT and social entrepreneurship and the SDGs. 45 selected participants from India and Bangladesh participated in the debates. The debates were held in parallel democratic subgroups. The conference also included enjoyable group activities and tasks and a musical evening.

The conclave was an effort to bring the Queens Young Leaders and RCS Associate Fellows together to share their works and experiences with selected youth delegates and change makers from India and Bangladesh.

The India-Bangladesh Commonwealth Youth Conclave (IBCYC) is the first youth event with the focus on Commonwealth collaboration between India and Bangladesh. The organisers believe the IBCYC would provide opportunities for active collaboration and interaction which would be an extension of positive relations that have marked the history of India and Bangladesh, and the Commonwealth countries. The goal of the Conclave is to create a unique platform for young activist from Commonwealth countries and develop understanding, where they can exchange experience, knowledge and ideas and acquire new skills.

The British Council also hosts the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP), which is a scholarship scheme that enables students from Commonwealth countries to study in other Commonwealth countries.