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Asian Young Women's Leadership Development Seminar 2020 in Singapore

Voices of Participants:
Asian Young Women's Leadership Development Seminar 2020 in Singapore

DSC017921.jpgAsian Young Women's Leadership Development Seminar was held in Singapore from 12th to 18th February 2020. There came 35 women from 10 regions and countries of the world. The following are the voices of 7 of these women those were posted on our Facebook.


DSC017551.jpg【February 13th / Hikaru's Reflection】
  Since this was the first day of the seminar, we had an orientation and learned about Singapore. The participants soon became close by eating lunch together and having a reflection time. We also came to know different opinions and senses of values of each country. Singapore is popular as a destination of family and school trips, but we found that Singapore has as diverse problems as Japan. The Leadership Development Seminar as only just begun, but I already feel that I found a clue on what I should do during the seminar and also in the future.


DSC016822.jpg【February 14th / Yuri's Reflection】
  The second day started with a devotion by the Japanese Team; we then visited two facilities and the day ended with a Valentine's Day dinner. The devotion did not go well due to the electrical device trouble, but the handclaps by the participants while singing the hymns really helped us! We first went to Autism Resource Center where the Autism people are actually working. The head of the center, who is Christian, told us, based on her experiences, how we, as Christian, should have led. In the afternoon, we visited Tamar Village where we listened to the people who, according to the words of the Bible, are helping out the women in prostitution. By visiting those facilities, I felt (though I may not know very much) that in Japan, Christians are not working hard enough toward social issues compared to Singapore Christians. Japanese churches are facing their problems, such as decreasing the number of church members and may not have leeway, but I thought to play a significant role in social issues, doing what the Bible tells us to do, is another mission that churches should pursue. We will spend the whole day tomorrow inside the hotel studying the Bible and having discussions. I thank God for protecting our day today and look forward to tomorrow.


DSC023482.jpg【February 15th / Manami's Reflection】
  Today, we learned mainly about aging societies, leaders' quality, the Bible and foreign migrant workers. The issues of aging societies and foreign workers are deteriorating recently; as a leader learning leadership in the seminar, I strongly felt that I should seriously and sincerely face the issues. We also found by discussing with people from other countries the common issues we face and worked together to find solutions. In the last session "Reflections", we all demonstrated what we learned on the day using the original music we made. The members presenting the reflections through dancing and clapping inspired me very much. I have been learning many new things every day and spending fruitful time. It is a pity that the seminar will be over in two days. I will not miss any second of the rest of the seminar.


DSC024461.jpg【February 15th / Riko's Reflection】
  Today was Day 3 of the seminar. That we have only two days left surprises me and also makes me sad. We spent the whole day studying- starting with the Bible Study, and all the speakers gave us precious inspirations through their stories that strongly encouraged us. The seminar has been enjoyable and intriguing, and I could feel courage, hope, and power rising inside myself for what I am going to do. I am grateful for the opportunities to mingle with women from other parts of Asia. By talking with them and sharing the anxiety and challenges that we face as Asian women, I found out that all the countries share the same problems and that I am not alone. The moment that we came to understand and encourage one another made us very happy. It was so precious that it almost made me cry. Time flies fast, but what I learned in the seminar was very deep and rich, and I am sure that these learnings will help me in whatever I do in the future. I will continue to learn from the participants' stories and will not hesitate to do what I think I should do.


DSC015371.jpg【February 16th / Haruno's Reflection】
  Today was the 4th day of the seminar, and we attended the 135th Anniversary Service of the Singapore Methodist Church. The service was quite different from the ones I knew in Japan; it seemed more creative and free-they were using videos in the service. In the gala dinner and the talent show at night, the participants wore their countries' traditional costumes and performed songs and dances; it was a very special time gathering 10 different Asian countries in one.In the five days of the seminar, I learned and procured a lot of new findings, such as a new point of view and a sense of values through the sessions with people from 10 countries of different cultural backgrounds. The fog I had in my mind has been gradually cleared, and I am beginning to find the solutions. On the first day, since I was not confident with my English, I was intimidated by the participants at my age speaking English fluently, but everybody was very kind to me. They listened very carefully to what I was saying and helped me when I could not find the right words. I was surrounded by truly warm people; they helped me not only with my English but also with my anxious mind.Tomorrow is our last day. Even in the short time left, I would like to keep challenging without fear of failing and be thankful for the opportunities I was given.


DSC023241.jpg【February 16th / Ayaka's Reflection】
  Today was Day 4 of the seminar, and it was a long day. We attended the 135th Anniversary Service of the Singapore Methodist Church, experienced the traditional Singapore cooking, Prata, which has its origin in India, had two sessions, and then had the gala dinner and the talent show. What a long and hard day! In the service, we were introduced as guests and sang "Amazing Grace" in ten different languages, which we have practiced the day before. I am grateful that we could praise the same God in various languages.In the first half of the wrap-up session, I learned the importance of seeking the reason for my being here and knowing my special rights and responsibilities.
In the second half of the session on Day 5, we will wrap up the whole seminar. I came to feel that whenever I seek for the purpose of myself, I need to know who I actually am. The fact that I am sharing this with the women from 10 different countries is very encouraging.


DSC023981.jpg【February 17th / Hanaka's Reflection】
  The Asian Young Women's Leadership Development Seminar 2020 in Singapore, that began on February 12th, has come to the end. We finished the program by sharing "what we can do to change the world" that we thought about yesterday. We used the shape of a hand; we wrote an answer to the 5 questions on each finger and looked back on what we earned through the seminar. Everything was connected to the word 'last', and it almost made me cry. We could visit the Gardens by the Bay on a small chartered bus in our free time. We not only saw beautiful flowers and plants but also gained a better understanding of the problems of nature, such as global warming. Now that the seminar is over, we are asked how we would apply to our lives what we have learned. Even though it was for a short period, having deep discussions on various topics with the women from 10 Asian countries of different backgrounds and cultures was encouraging and will definitely have a huge impact on my life. I am grateful for the opportunity to attend the seminar and to meet the 35 members from 10 different countries.

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