Unilever holds annual SPARKS Youth Forum | Daily News

Unilever holds annual SPARKS Youth Forum

In its quest to engage the youth on purpose driven leadership, Unilever Sri Lanka’s annual Youth Forum, organized by the Unilever student ambassadors SPARKS, this year featured a very rich dialogue on the theme ‘Purpose’.

With over 800 applicants - out of which 200 delegates were selected to participate in the forum - the 2018 edition attracted several young leaders who are passionate and willing to contribute towards positive change. These individuals, who are undergraduates selected from varied universities across the island, had the opportunity to meet industry professionals and network with other influential advocates while sharing their ideas on how purpose driven people enable businesses to be driven by purpose.

The forum began with a welcome note by Carl Cruz Chairman of Unilever Sri Lanka who stressed upon the role of the youth in driving positive change through purpose driven leadership. This was followed by six distinguished speakers, including Insaf Bakeer Markar Official Sri Lankan Youth delegate to the United Nations - 2018/19 and Founder of the National Youth Model United Nations in Sri Lanka.

Bathiya Jayakody and Santhush Weeraman singers and composers at BNS Productions – then took to stage to share stories of their challenging yet inspiring life journeys and their discovery of what truly drove them to achieve their success as youth icons.

A panel discussion at the end of the evening saw individuals from various backgrounds take to the ‘Hot Seat’ to answer a series of purpose related questions which were thrown their way.

The panelists included Sumeet Verma Director Human Resources at Unilever Sri Lanka, whose key message was titled ‘Companies with purpose last and brands with purpose grow’; Achala Samaradivakara Founder of Good Market Colombo who was awarded the Young Woman Entrepreneur of the year 2017 along with Social Entrepreneur for the year 2017- spoke on how ‘People and businesses with purpose thrive’; and Farhan Bahaman Finance Excellence Manager at Unilever Sri Lanka who’s subject was ‘Point of view on Purpose and how our students can relate it to their day-to-day life’.

The main objective of the forum was to provide an environment where the youth can share experiences on the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous environment they live in. It encouraged them to follow their purpose and find a direction and pathway to building their lives with meaning. 


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