On December 26, 2020 Youth and Students for Peace USA (YSP) held a National S!NERGY event online in partnership with the Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP). Three young people presented their ideas and project proposals to a panel of guest judges, along with an audience watching the livestream.
All the competitors were well spoken and gave inspiring presentations, making it a difficult choice for the judges and audience. When the votes were submitted the MC mentioned that the points were extremely close as he announced the final results and placements. In 3rd place with $200 was Angela Mao with her Rainwater Harvesting Proposal involving schools and youth; in 2nd place with $300 was Soonmee Iwasaki and Stephanie Dias with their podcast proposal to bring accurate, global news to those using social media; and finally in 1st place with $500 was Kodai Abe representing his college organization, CARP, in Los Angeles with their conference and cultural project for bringing awareness and involvement to the youth of the USA and South Korea to help bring about the peaceful reunification of the Korean Peninsula.
YSP had the privilege to host three guest judges for the event from the academic and political spheres. They were Representative Joy Garratt from the New Mexico House of Representatives; Dr. Federico Zaragoza, President of the College of Southern Nevada; and Senator Donzella James of the Georgia State Senate. All the judges asked questions and gave encouraging feedback to the young presenters, commending their ideas and efforts.
2020 YOUTH HEROES’ AWARDS
During the event two notable young adults were also recognized with the 2020 Youth Heroes’ Award. This award is given by Youth and Students for Peace to those whose public work has positively impacted society, engages young people, and is supporting the Sustainable Development Goals. The 2020 year awardees were Kiangana Dialungana, also known as Makaya Revell, from Pennsylvania, and Tarina Kaur Ahuja from Virginia. Kiangana founded the “Marie Mambu Makaya Foundation” to help the orphans in the Democratic Republic of Congo and also established an orphanage in this country. Tarina co-founded the non-profit “Young Khalsa Girls” to empower young girls and involve them in helping their community, and more recently began “The Greater Good Initiative” to involve young people in policy making to improve their communities. Both recipients received a certificate, a medal specially designed by IAYSP, and a grant of $500 towards their projects.