Nepal Social Work Symposium 2016
On May 17th and 18th, The School of Social Sciences at Thames International College hosted Nepal Social Work Symposium 2016. The Theme for Nepal Social Work symposium for the year was "Societies thrive well when dignity and rights of all peoples are respected: Social Workers towards an undivided humanity."
The Symposium comprised of various events such as Speaker Series, Panel Discussion, Meet the Authors, Slam Poetry and Photo Exhibition with a view of raising the issues of the voiceless. The featured personalities from various sectors from development to media, discussed the pressing issues of the marginalized groups. Understanding the significance of youth awareness and engagement, the symposium stood as a great assembly for conscious minds to come together and have healthy discussions on the contemporary issues of the nation.
Eminent Personalities from various sectors graced the symposium with their esteemed presence. The guest speakers on the first day were Mr. Bhairaja Pandey, Mr. Dilbhusan Pathak, Mr. Bishwabhakta Dulal 'Aahuti', and Ms. Nayantara Gurung Kakshapati who talked on pressing issues of the marginalized groups.
May 17 - First Day of the program comprised of the following series of events:-
- Working with Marginalized Groups: Global Context by Mr. Bhairaja Pandey, a former UNHCR Representative for Myanmar, discoursed on "Working with the Marginalized Groups". He provided insights of his field experiences and past work proficiencies to the audience on the realities and ways of moving forth in the area of working with disadvantaged groups.
- Following the Plenary session Mr. Dilbhusan Pathak discussed the role of the media in order to raise the unheard voices of the minorities.
- The third session of the event was - Book Talk with Mr. Bishwabhakta Dulal Aahuti, Author of the Book "Varna System and Class Struggle in Nepal", graced the event by discoursing on the issues present in the book. The book talk instilled an environment which made the audience critically question existing norms and constructed values of the society.
- Last session of the first day of the event concluded with a Presentation by Photocircle on Youth Engagement and Volunteerism
May 18 – Second day of the program comprised of the following events:-
- Working with Marginalized Communities: Field work experience by Mr. Juanito Estrada International Volunteer Expert at VSO Nepal, shared light on his field work experiences of working with marginalized communities in Nepal.
- The second session of the event was slam poetry by The Word Warriors Nepal who performed a powerful spoken word. The poetry revolved around aspects of feminism, women empowerment and gender equality, creating a plethora of emotions amongst the audience. The performers were: Ms. Ujjwala Maharjan, Ms. Yukta Bajracharya, Ms. Ashma Aryal, Mr. Rochak Dahal, and Mr. Pramod K.C.
- The following session consisted of a Book Talk by Mr. Ujjwal Prasai on Ganatantra ko Sangarsha. Mr. Prasai, an editor of Online Magazine Record Nepal, and the Nepali translating writer of the book "Battles of New Republic by Prashant Jha" shared about his work, during "Meet the Author" session.
- Last day of the event ended with a thought provoking Panel Discussion on Women, Third Gender and Constitution.
- Ms. Nirmala Sharma, President of Sancharika Samuha: The Moderator for the discussion presided over the session.
- Panelists: The eminent speakers for the discussion were Dr. CK Gyawali, advocate in Supreme Court, Ms. Sushma Gautam, advocate of Gender rights and equality, and Ms. Bhumika Shrestha, transgender activist who deliberated on 'Women, Third Gender and Constitution'. Existing laws of the country were discussed at the panel discussion with critical insight from all the panelists, and questions from the audience were addressed as well.
The objective of the Nepal Social Work Symposium 2016 was to give platform to the unheard voices of the marginalized and backward communities, the grand event ended as it successfully provided a platform for prominent speakers and activists to deliberate and engage the audience with relevant and significant issues.