Message from the Council of Young Tegaru in North America Ad Hoc Committee.
(Aigaforum) July 23, 2017
Aigaforum invited three members of the AdHoc committee namely: Fitsumberhan Beyene, Filmon Abera, and Feven Girmay (PhD) for an online interview to discuss about the upcoming meeting in Las Vegas on the side of Tigrai Festival. The discussion centered on the development and mission of the AdHoc committee.
This committee seeks to gather Tigaru youth from various parts of North America, with the goal of creating a strong Tigaru youth community. The members outlined that the community serves to create a platform for social connectedness, cultural awareness/exchange, philanthropy, and community engagement. While various other Tigaru-centered organizations exist, this committee is unique as it pinpoints a very specific demographic. Throughout the interview, topics addressed education, the current state of the youth, and future directions for Tigaru youth.Part1
The committee members outlined that they have recognized a void in the cultural awareness of Tigaru youth in the U.S. However, even beyond culture, there seems to be a lack of familiarity and disconnect among Tigaru youth. As a result, the gap between generations has widened and the cultural disconnect continues to expand. However, if the youth are provided with a platform in which they are given the tools to learn more about their history, culture, and background it will create an avenue for both individual and communal growth. Essentially, the interviewees stressed that through both knowledge and opportunity, the youth will seek to foster a sense of cultural pride, thereby prompting them to give back to their communities both domestically and abroad.
In discussing the role of education of the Ethiopian youth, the committee addressed the increasing drive of Ethiopians in the U.S. to pursue higher education. This was mentioned to be of utmost importance as the committee recognizes that the opportunities afforded to them here in America are not necessarily commonplace back home. In fact, one important aspect of the AdHoc committee is the notion of building a community of scholars, thereby fostering development both in their home and host country. Therefore through education, the youth can succeed in both occupational and financial sectors, and in doing so will then be in a place where they can support the educational infrastructure in their homeland.
While the notion of progress and uplift was a core theme emanating from the interviewees responses, potential setbacks and points of contention were also discussed. One of which was the role of politics in the committee’s organizations. As discussed, the AdHoc committee is not a political organization, but rather an organization that seeks to promote cultural and community development through social connectedness and uplift. Aspects such as language, history, and cultural traditions, are both everlasting and universal across Tigaru people. Therefore, by focusing on the things that unite the Tigaru youth, the committee prevents discontent, dissention, and controversy.
While the goals of the Adhoc committee are ever evolving, it’s important to mention that first and foremost, the goal is to develop a strong youth community in the U.S. The focus on Tigaru youth rather than the broader Ethiopian population is meant to address issues at the forefront of our community, before attempting to tackle broader scheme issues. Therefore, at the upcoming festival, the aim is to connect the youth with one another and encourage engagement. In doing so, the committee will continue to grow and will then be in a position in which the members collective talents can be used for the advancement of our people both at home and abroad.
Finally, in the overall message, the committee outlined that among the Tigaru youth there is a great deal of potential for individual and community uplift. Therefore, this committee is seeking to provide a platform for engagement, discussion, and development. That is why we urge youth of all ages and demographics to participate, so that young Tigarus can build a strong foundation for themselves and future generations.