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CA Sri Lanka Students’ Society President at World Conference on Youth

President of the Students’ Society of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka) Ms. Krystle Reid recently represented Sri Lanka at the World Conference on Youth 2014 (WCY 2014).

Ms. Reid, a strategic level student of CA Sri Lanka, served as a delegate at the conference held in Colombo and Hambantota in mid-May which brought together some 1200 participants from across the globe including ministers of youth, youth-led organizations, representatives of governments, non-governmental organizations, United Nations Agencies and other development organisations.

The CA Sri Lanka Students Society President who also holds a Professional Qualification in HRM from the Institute of Personnel Management with one of the highest averages in the batch, also had the opportunity to be an observer at the inter-governmental negotiations chaired by Dr. Palitha Kohona; Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, which had prevalent deliberations between the youth and representatives of Governments and was able to witness the formulation of the final outcome document of the WCY 2014; the Colombo Declaration which is the first document that is authored by Youth and Governments jointly. The WCY 2014 was the ultimate break to evaluate the progress and the areas that were failed to addressed by the Millennium Development Goals (MDG's) formulated by the United Nations in the year 2000, before the Colombo Declaration on Youth is submitted at the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly. This outcome document would carry significant input to mainstreaming youth in the Post - 2015 Development Agenda and would tackle along with the priority areas of the United Nations World Program of Action for Youth (WPAY).

As a delegate and as a youth activist, Ms. Reid believed that the conference was the ideal platform to express youth views, ideas and to give out recommendations and solutions for pressing issues in a global context. She also had the opportunity to contribute to the process at two significant roundtable plenaries, i.e. Realizing Equal Access to Quality Education and Ending Systemic Inequalities.

This year’s World Conference on Youth also saw some remarkable and inspirational speeches by the President of the United Nations General Assembly His Excellency Dr. John W. Ashe, the President of Sri Lanka His Excellency Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa and the United Nations Secretary General's Envoy on Youth; Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi.

“I also had the opportunity to meet Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi for a 15 minute interview to discuss the inclusiveness of youth in our country. It was indeed a privilege to be in his presence discussing this important matter,” she said.

“The eternal debate of accountants has been all about numbers, and this is one stigma that we really need to change. As budding Chartered Accountants, I believe we can change this perception and become the 2020 Chartered Accountant that the world desires for, where we go beyond our conventional number crunching role,” Ms. Reid said.

Ms. Reid also added that, “I was very appreciative of the strong statement made by Mr. Lane Robinson; of the Commonwealth Youth Programme in his roundtable plenary where he said, ‘it's not the governments but the 1.8 billion of youth around the world that are in power. And that empowerment must take place right now among all of us’, ”she added.

Krystle Reid with Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi; United Nations Secretary General's Envoy on Youth