Tibetan Youth Leadership Program

Participants in the 2005 TYLP receive a briefing on the current situation inside Tibet from Kate Saunders, ICT Communications Director.

Amsterdam – Eleven Tibetan participants from Belgium, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom have completed the fifth Tibetan Youth Leadership Program (and the second in Europe), held in Amsterdam by the International Campaign for Tibet – Europe. The programme began on December 8 and ended on December 13, 2005.

Among speakers and resource persons who came to meet the participants was the Special Envoy of H.H. the Dalai Lama, Mr. Lodi Gyari, who gave a comprehensive briefing on the status of the Sino-Tibetan dialogue. The participants expressed their gratitude for Mr Gyari’s openness in addressing their questions and felt as a group that he had addressed their many concerns and given them a solid understanding of the dialogue process and how it might develop in the future.

The sessions also included discussions on Chinese legal concepts of ethnic autonomy and a visit from a Sinologist at the University of Leiden, who spoke on current developments in the Chinese political landscape. The TYLP group was particularly enthusiastic about these China-focused discussions and indicated that they had a strong desire to better understand the dynamics of Chinese politics in order view the Tibet issue in a wider context.

In sessions focusing on Tibetan cultural issues, many in the group were introduced for the first time to developments in writing, pop music and the visual arts inside Tibet. Loten, a Tibetan musician from Switzerland also gave an interactive performance for the participants, explaining the background of his instruments and music.

The Tibetan Youth Leadership Programme aims to nurture youth leaders who will not only become the leaders of the Tibetan community in the future, but who will also act now to convert their energy and convictions about issues affecting Tibet into a powerful force for activism and change. The training will be specifically geared to meet the need of the Tibetan community for a core group of young, articulate Tibetan leaders. ICT will provide travel expenses as well as arrange for accommodation and food during the training period.

The first TYLP was held in Washington, D.C. from March 9 to 11, 2001 with 15 participants. During the third TYLP (the first in Europe) held in Brussels in July 2003, there were 15 participants from seven different countries. In June 2004 there were 11 participants from eight different States in the United States for the third TYLP in Washington, D.C.

The following are the participants in this year’s program:

  • Jamyang Choedon, Vaarby, Sweden
  • Lodoe Tsetan, Budapest, Hungary
  • Namdrol Lhamo, Brussels, Belgium
  • Ngawang Kyizom, Brussels, Belgium
  • Samdup Tenzin, Scotland, UK
  • Tanqi Sanpai, Antwerp, Belgium
  • Tashi Namgyal, Barcelona, Spain
  • Tenzin Choesang, South Tyrol, Italy
  • Tenzin Phulchung, Barcelona, Spain
  • Thilen Dolma, Madrid, Spain
  • Yangjin, Madrid, Spain