By Unurjargal Urjin and Bulgan Batdorj
Participation to Mongolian Development workshop was organized on the Monday, April 20, 2017 at the Liu Institute for Global Issues by the BC Mongolian Student and Alumni Club. This is the second series of the dialogue workshop organised by the BCMSA club last year Envisioning the Future for Mongolia. The event attracted 25 participants representing UBC students, people living and working in Vancouver, British Columbia.
The keynote speaker BOLORMAA Purevjav, who is a Canadian International Resource Development Institute’s Fellow at UBC and Chair, Stakeholder Engagement and Sustainable Development. Ms. P. Bolormaa has shared her insights with regards to the growing need of participation at all levels with the focus on sub-national level. She showcased a story where people at local community gathered to formulate their vision and the importance of leading a participatory process of stakeholders to achieve its vision.
The panelists at the event were Ms. Bolormaa Purevjav, Mr. Batjav Gonchigjav, businessman in Vancouver, and Ms. Sainsanaa Khurelbaatar, graduate student at UBC. The panelists shared their personal experiences on “what it was living in the socialist regime; what exactly meant transition period to democracy and how they tried to respond to hardship that country experienced in in early 1990s”. The life wisdom, struggle, strong ties to traditions and culture, personal values guided them in their life path and career achievements. Personal development is of high importance; being organized, developing right habits, having positive attitudes and maintaining good health is a foundation.
Panelists, looking back and reflecting what was achieved through personal life stories, made participants to share their own experiences and connect with each other. Many participants expressed their view how they feel about themselves while in Canada, how they would frame the Mongolian identity. After consoling the past, present and future, the group identified that being a Mongolian means that we are proud, resilient, adaptive, observant fighters who is embracing consistency and patience.
The graduate student Ms. Sainsanaa Khurelbaatar, representing the young generation of Mongolia, shared her insights in participating in the Mongolian future. She emphasized that mental and physical health of young Mongolians were and are in the front and center for our nation’s success and how we should tap into our ancestral wisdom and quoted the proverb on “Цагын юм цагтаа” (do things in due time – pragmatic translation).
In the end, BC-MSA club annual report was presented by club head Enkhgerel.G. According to his presentation, Mongolian students raised $1526 CAD from fundraising events and supporters, and over 20 students contributed and actively participated in these events.
From February 2016 to March 2017, BC-MSA club has organized over 15 events, including scholar lectures, volunteering fundraising event, and workshops. BC-MSA current vision is to expand their activities through students who are studying and studied in all around Canada. At this workshop, the club announced the election for the club’s executive roles. The role, Head of Club, Treasurer, Operational VP, External Relationship VP, and Marketing VP are open to Mongolian students and community.
As part of known as multicultural school UBC, the Mongolian student community delighted to be actively engaged with each other and enthusiastically contributed to the Mongolian community. On behalf of the BC-MSA club, we thank everyone for their generous support.
The event organizers would like to thank the Liu Institute of Global Issues, Dr. Nadja Kunz, Ms. Jani Manikkar, Starbucks and everyone who generously supported our event and our activities.