Global Leaders Unite: A Reflection on the 16th World Social Forum in Nepal

A Solidarity March for Change

The 16th edition of the World Social Forum (WSF) unfolded in Kathmandu, Nepal, from February 15-19, 2024, under the inspiring theme “Another World is Possible.” The event commenced with a Solidarity March, symbolizing the convergence of voices advocating for social harmony, Free Palestine, global peace, equality, and an end to discrimination. With thousands of participants, the rally became a powerful expression of unity, featuring banners with slogans that echoed the aspirations of various national and international organizations spanning diverse sectors and rights. Representatives from various sectors including climate change activists, workers, farmers, trade unions, women’s organizations, youth, LGBTQI groups, indigenous communities, ethnic organizations, civil society groups, and social movements participated in the five-day event.

Youth From Morocco visited in the Nepal Unites Stall.

Intercontinental Youth Forum: Shaping the Future

Running concurrently with the WSF, the Intercontinental Youth Forum (IYF) from February 17-19, 2024, gathered youth rights activists from India, South Africa, Nepal, America, Colombia, Fiji, France, and Palestine. Organized by Youth Advocacy Nepal in collaboration with over 60 organizations, the forum hosted ten sessions covering topics such as education, peace, inequality, climate justice, feminism, migration, and youth participation. Over 5000 youth actively participated, exchanging ideas and perspectives that contributed to the overarching theme of building a better world.

Nepal Unites: Bridging Divides for Peace

 Nepal Unites, a prominent participant in the WSF, showcased its initiatives at a dedicated booth, attracting thousands of representatives eager to learn about its work with youth on peace, youth leadership, non-violence, conflict transformation, and grassroots movements. Notably, key speakers, including representative from Nepal Unites, the National Director, Mohammad Ayatulla Rahaman addressed critical issues such as women’s empowerment under the theme “Empowering Perspective” and the youth organizational perspective under the theme, “Harmony in Diversity,” emphasizing the organization’s commitment to unity, mutual understanding, peace, and social harmony.

Mohammad Ayatulla Rahaman presented on “Harmony in Diversity”.

A Global Gathering of Changemakers

 The WSF served as a meaningful convergence of global civil society members, NGOs, INGOs, and individuals, all dedicated to fostering dialogue and sharing experiences. This was the good platform for networking along with the NGO’s and INGO’s. More than 50,000 participants from over 1400 organizations across 92 countries marked their attendance, both virtually and in person. The event’s success lies in its ability to bring together diverse voices committed to creating a peaceful world and promoting global solidarity, all within one platform.

 The Power of Collective Action

 As the WSF concluded on February 19, the event left an indelible mark with 60 declarations from organizations worldwide. These declarations pledged collaboration towards realizing another, fairer, and more just world. The event highlighted the power of collective action and the necessity of ongoing efforts to foster a better world that embraces diversity, equity, peace, and justice for all.

In reflection, the 16th World Social Forum in Kathmandu not only provided a platform for dialogue and collaboration but also ignited a collective spirit among global leaders to strive for a world where another, more inclusive future is not only possible but actively pursued.

Mohammad Ayatulla Rahaman

National Director, Nepal Unites