The World Wildlife Day Regional Youth Symposium 2023 was held in Singapore from 4th to 5th March 2023 and was organized by youths under the Youth Stewards for Nature Programme by the National Parks Board of Singapore, and Mandai Nature is a key partner at this event. The symposium is centered around the theme ‘Partnerships for Wildlife Conservation in Southeast Asia’. This year, the symposium also commemorates the 50th year since the Convention on International trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) was signed. The symposium was participated by Dr. Salwa Khalid from IBER. Dr. Salwa’s participation was financially supported by Mandai Nature. The symposium includes participants from all over Southeast Asia to discuss their actions and aspirations for biodiversity conservation.
The 2-day symposium included a series of talks by international experts including an opening address by Minister Desmond Lee, the Minister for National Development and Minister-in-charge of Social Services Integration, Singapore, a keynote address by His Royal Highness The Regent of Pahang Crown Prince Tengku Hassanal Ibrahim Alam Shah Ibni Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah and a message from Ms Ivonne Higuero, Secretary-General, UN Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Wildlife Fauna and Flora (CITES). Followed by panel discussion sessions, and focused group discussions. Whereas Day 2, comprised a series of decentralized workshops that focused on conservation work. Dr. Salwa attended the workshop on “Conserving Southeast Asia’s Most Threatened”. The workshop included a discussion activity to identify target species and their associated challenges following the IUCN Species Survival Commission. Followed by a visit back of house areas and a look firsthand at the various ex-situ conservation projects at the Singapore Zoo.
Text & Photos by: Dr Salwa Khalid