Born from the World Economic Forum, the Global Shapers Community is an exciting network of young people under the age of 30 working together to tackle regional and global challenges. With over 14,000 members, the global shaper community spans 456 city hubs in 150 countries. In each city, a team of shapers organizes to create projects that meet the needs of the community. Projects range from disaster response and poverty mitigation to climate change initiatives and the building of inclusive communities. Creators vary in terms of expertise, education, income, heritage, and identity, but share a common desire to make a difference.
Living with the pandemic
The initiative was still an idea that we were waiting for the right moment to implement it, but the pandemic has helped in some way because it was more emergency and we were more motivated of doing this. Through this we were more inspired to go out and doing this and hep the people, too. We tried to disseminate the webinars in all the platforms that are possible because of the different partners we have. So that more people could be benefit from these webinars. The good thing is that these are still online and whoever is interested he/she can go through them. As we are focusing in the community, we tried to make our webinars welcome and accessible for everyone for everyone. We didn’t provide super advance information but to have a basic profile. With this mindset, the underrepresented youth could be also participating and take advantage of this initiative. It was actually outstanding the fact that we managed to reach people from other countries. Although, we understand that were some eliminations for people who probably don’t have access in the internet or a smart device to watch the webinars and that was a real challenge. But unfortunately, we couldn't tackle it.
Seen the analytics from the webinars we have an idea if this webinar was successful. Through the system you are able to have notifications and see the responds and the reaction the webinar may have from the participants. The fact that are still online and free, people go back and watch them. With this way it ensures sustainability. Cyprus is a very troubled place but at the same time has some opportunities. Unfortunately, people don’t know about these opportunities. There are a lot of programs that young people can be benefit. But, is not common for them to search about it and take advantage. In terms of support, I haven’t felt unsupported from the authorities maybe because I didn’t ask. There are opportunities but we don’t know about them because stakeholders don’t do an effective promotion about them. We feel like there is no one to rely on. I haven't been in touch with local authorities but through our project and Global Shapers we have relation with semi-government organizations and this partnership actually shows the opposite. The most difficult things are to get touch with them.
Global Shapers mindset is baby steps might have positive impact. You can’t change the world, but you can change the world of one person. Taking every kind of opportunity in the society and try to pitch people about an issue is very important and it’s the definition of an active citizen. Of course, this pandemic was a big challenge for us personally but for Global Shapers, too. Although, we tried to see the positive side of this situation and adjust our life in the new situations. It was an opportunity to develop ourselves and reset us. This challenge makes some people stronger, some people weaker. Working online for example, was a struggle at the beginning but getting used to it, I understand the benefits you have. Another example is the climate change. Through this pandemic we understand that we can still survive with less things. Teleworking, reduced the pollution in the air, we were more conscious customers and generally we appreciated more the small things in life. So, this can be an inspiration to do greater things and to change the way we work, think and we see the system.