Ambassador Remarks at Camp Unite YMCA Facility, Bagbé

Ambassador Remarks at Camp Unite
YMCA Facility, Bagbé
July 12, 2017 at 10:45 AM

Hello. I’m very happy to be with you this morning. I would like to begin by congratulating you on having been selected for this program. This shows that you are among the most dynamic and talented young people in your communities. This is something you should be proud of!

The Embassy has agreed to support this camp because we recognize the talent of youth in Togo and we firmly believe that you are the future leaders of this country. It has become commonplace to say that young people are the future. But, given that Africa is the continent with the youngest population in the world, it is doubly true that, young people will shape the world of tomorrow.

That is an honor and it is at the same time a responsibility. Here in Togo, no one can deny that we are in a period of immense challenges, but also opportunities. And we need a generation of young leaders who are ready to embrace those opportunities, and take action as good citizens to create positive change in the country.

This is why I am here today, to support Camp UNITE and to talk about what it means to be a good citizen and why this is important.

So, what do I mean by the term “good citizen”?  Well, let’s see if we can agree on this description:  A good citizen is:

  • Someone who respects others and their property.
  • He/she is helpful and considerate, willing to put others first.
  • He/she listens to the views of others and thinks about what they have to say.
  • He/she helps people who are not in a position to help themselves.
  • He/she respects the environment and does not damage it in anyway.
  • He/she works hard.
  • He/she is well mannered and pleasant.
  • He/she is always willing to learn

I think that accurately describes a good citizen, but I am curious to hear your thoughts.  In a few moments, we will have a question & answer session and I look forward to hearing from you about what we can do in our daily lives to be good citizens.

I will stop there, but before I conclude I want to thank the YMCA and the volunteers of the Peace Corps who organized this Camp. Let’s give them a round of applause for the great work they’ve done!

Finally, I want to congratulate each of you once again for being selected for this camp, and for being young leaders in your schools and communities. Last week we had a group of boys here, and they were very impressive too. But the truth is, we are more proud of you than we are of the boys. That is because we all know that women and girls have to struggle twice as hard to succeed. So congratulations on everything you have accomplished so far, and keep up the hard work.