Watch the video: ‘The 3rd S Rajaratnam Endowment – ASEAN Community Forum’.
“The aim is to get together and build a common vision, look at the shared heritage that we have, move forward to formulate a stronger identity, from the bottom up.”
– Mr. Hilmar Farid (Vice Chair, ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting on Culture and Arts)
Building a stronger, more united ASEAN takes more than alignment between heads of states and shared goals at the institutional level. Enabling wider participation and cultivating an ASEAN at the community and grassroots level is critical to the continued dynamism, resilience and inclusiveness of ASEAN.
With the support of Temasek Foundation Connects, the ASEAN Foundation organised the 3rd S Rajaratnam Endowment – ASEAN Community Forum on 14-15 March 2018, to broaden and deepen engagement of ASEAN civil society and grassroots organisations.
The aim of the ASEAN Community Forum series is to forge more people-to-people engagement and alliances outside inter-governmental institutions on solutions to key issues, and contribute to the further development of ASEAN. Through the Forum, steps have been taken to improve the well-being of the peoples of ASEAN, and achieve a shared ASEAN identity based on a bottom-up approach.
At the 3rd Forum, 50 leaders from 48 civil society organisations from all ten ASEAN countries came together to discuss challenges as well as the way forward on these specific themes: youth and education; culture and information; and culture of peace. These reflected the priorities of ASEAN, and resonated with Singapore’s Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2018, which focused on the themes of resilience and innovation.
The participants took back with them mutually agreed upon recommendations and work plans for integration into their respective organisational planning and activities. These include having “peace journalists” to highlight stories of harmony across ASEAN, and revising school curricula to deepen appreciation of similarities between countries and cultures.
Addressing the participants, Mr Lim Hock Chuan (Chief Executive, Temasek Foundation Connects) said, “It is critical for ASEAN to be united and enhance its work to strengthen physical, institutional and people-to-people connectivity. In this regard, I hope with this forum, we can strengthen the bonds we have forged over time and work towards a participative, dynamic and harmonious community for the benefit of ASEAN peoples.”
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Did you know…
ASEAN began in 1967 with the modest aim of keeping the peace in Southeast Asia, against the backdrop of the Cold War. S Rajaratnam was one of ASEAN’s five “founding fathers”.
About ASEAN Foundation
The ASEAN Foundation was established by the ASEAN Leaders in December 1997 during ASEAN’s 30th Anniversary Commemorative Summit to help bring about shared prosperity and a sustainable future to all 10 ASEAN Member Countries, namely, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam.
About Temasek Foundation Connects
Temasek Foundation Connects is a non-profit philanthropic organisation set up by Temasek and sponsored through Temasek Trust.
Temasek Foundation Connects seeks to build bridges and promote dialogue and mutual understanding across international communities. The Foundation’s programmes reach out to leaders from the public, private and people sectors in ASEAN and Asia. These programmes advance collective knowledge and mutual understanding in key areas that are important to Singapore and on a global front. In addition to its many programmes, the Foundation manages the Singapore Summit – an international forum for global business and political leaders.