DIA Summit 2023 "Innovating Future Generations" Focused on Youth Empowerment and Innovation in Trinidad and Tobago
Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. November 24th, 2023 — The DIA Summit at Trinidad and Tobago brought together members of the DIA network, stakeholders, government representatives, experts, and local organizations on November 23rd and 24th. Hosted by CARIRI, the local implementing partner of the DIA Youth Innovation Lab in Trinidad and Tobago (DIA Lab TT), the two-day event, themed "Innovating Future Generations," successfully fostered knowledge exchange, discussions on critical issues, networking, and collaboration to address challenges and promote meaningful initiatives.
This year's Summit covered pivotal themes such as Technology, Creative Economies, Climate Change, and Tourism, ensuring a comprehensive exploration of key areas influencing the future landscape in the Latin American and Caribbean region.
November 23rd, we celebrated a stakeholder networking session to increase project visibility and forge relationships between our most promising DIA entrepreneurs, partners, beneficiaries, government, and industry.
On this opportunity, the Honorable Pennelope Beckles-Robinson, Minister of Planning and Development, said: "In the dynamic landscape of today's world, where challenges and opportunities intersect in unprecedented ways, the role of collaboration and opportunities inherent in our youth cannot be overstated. The youth, with their boundless energy, fresh ideas, and unwavering determination, are the driving force behind transformative projects that have the potential to shape the future."
A panel discussion on "Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century" also featured four inspiring DIA and young entrepreneurs who shared their experiences, shed light on modern entrepreneurship, and fostered connections among attendees. Cherisse Ellis from Mustards Ink Printing Services, Jonathan Roach from The Seasoning Source, Renee Andrews from Sorvete, and Dareem Jeffrey from EcoWashTT joined us as panelists.
On November 24th, the Summit opened its doors to the interested public, offering a broader engagement and participation platform. At his address, Mitch De Silva, Managing Director at Citi, said: "It is with great pride and honour that we aligned ourselves with this particular initiative. As part of its objective of being in 95 countries, the Citi Foundation focuses on how we can be additive and impactful in the communities we serve. The DIA aligns perfectly with that; it empowers youth, and by empowering youth, we have better communities where we are active."
Additionally, that day, we heard four engaging panel discussions. Each featured influential figures from respective industries, discussing critical aspects and exploring opportunities for growth and innovation, respectively:
Panel "Bridging the Gap between Technology and Entrepreneurship" with Nicholas Gayahpersad from the Trinidad and Tobago Intellectual Property Office (TTIPO), Maria Elena Navarro from Nudge Caribbean, John Paul Anderson from Microsoft, and Lyndon Baptiste from the Global Training Institute.
Panel "Youth Braking into the Orange Economy, the Craft and Festival Sector" with Hasani Wattley from Caesar's Army, Joshua Regrello as Musical Artiste, and Dr. Keith Nurse from COSTAAT.
Panel "Human Impacts and Resilience in 2023 and Beyond" with Omar Mohammed from The Cropper Foundation, Sofia Rajkumarsingh from EY, Isaiah James from the Red Cross, and Chandelle NT O'Neil from Mawu Sustainable Energy Services.
Panel "Revolutionizing Tourism in the Caribbean" with Shauna Todd from the Institute of Law and Economics (ILE), Ms. Siddiqua Mondol from the Global Training Institute, Camille Gaghadar from the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs, and Ariene Ng Fong from Play Hooky 868.
The DIA Summit 2023 was an event that brought together innovative leaders and thinkers with the goal of driving positive change in the Americas. Their reflections emphasize the importance of collaboration, inclusion, and commitment to sustainability and climate justice in the region. This event made it clear that the future of the Americas depends mainly on the joint action of its young people and the empowerment of its women, as well as the adoption of technology and ethical innovation.
To watch the panels, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ujr1ku2jFc.
About The Trust for the Americas:
The Trust for the Americas is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization affiliated with the Organization of American States (OAS). It was established in 1997 to promote public and private sector participation in social and economic development projects in Latin America and the Caribbean. Our initiatives, implemented through local partner organizations, seek to improve access to economic opportunities as well as to foster innovation in vulnerable communities in the hemisphere. To this end, The Trust also promotes social inclusion and good governance. The Trust has offices in Washington, D.C., Colombia, and Canada.
More information: www.thetrustfortheamericas.org
About Democratizing Innovation in the Americas (DIA):
DIA is a regional initiative of The Trust for the Americas that was launched to foster innovation and empower new generations through access to technology training, specialized curricula, collaboration spaces, mentorship, and financial resources for social and economic ventures.