Michael Teoh - World Youth Volunteering Summit, Colommbia
|Keynote Speaker||Global Youth Volunteerism as Drivers for Change|
|Compiled by||Partners of the Americas|
|Presented on||November 2011, Baranquilla, Colombia|
Michael Teoh has been travelling since January, 2011 to over 20 countries visiting the most impoverished communities in Peru and Colombia, to the highly sophisticated city of Shanghai, to participating in Lion Research projects in Zimbabwe, to trekking along the Canadian Rockies to promote Climate Change Awareness in Canada, to meeting tribal communities in Masai Mara, Kenya, and most recently, addressing global leaders twice during the United Nations Week in New York and in the UN Complex in Nairobi about 'Youth Volunteerism and Social Entrepreneurship.'
When Michael was short-listed among 45,000 people from 168 countries last November, to compete in the world's largest social entrepreneurship competition in the UK, he was the sole finalist from Asia and the youngest participant. Age did not stop him from marveling in his efforts, as proven through his 2011 world expedition, when he was elected as the Global Ambassador for Your Big Year, to promote social entrepreneurship and volunteerism throughout his world expedition in 2011.
Michael's efforts are testaments that social enterprises do play a role in encouraging a more inclusive and participative eco-system for youths to partake in the development of their communities.
On the home front, Michael is a Youth Advocate in Malaysia, consulting government agencies, companies and NGOs on engaging and developing the youth segment. In 2010, He served as the Head for Outreach Programmes at myHarapan, a youth foundation established to support, facilitate and grow youths and their initiatives to create positive impact to the community. He was also awarded the Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) - Most Enterprising Youth of the Year in 2010 by Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister.
For all the blessings that this 24 year old Penangite had received, Michael believes in sharing his stories with hopes of inspiring people to be more responsible and to participate collectively in tackling global issues. For this, he has been invited to speak at major global conferences on the subject of Youth Development both locally and internationally. To name a few, Michael was the keynote speaker twice for the world's largest youth summit, called One Young World which saw him addressing a crowd of 1,500 youths from 170 countries both in London (2010) and in Zurich (2011). He was also given the opportunity to speak to young African leaders in the World Youth Parliament in Kenya (Oct., 2011) and today, with global volunteers at the World Youth Volunteering Summit in Colombia (Nov., 2011).
As a staunch believer that education will empower one to change the lives of others, Michael has also been a frequent speaker in universities across the world, with his most memorable speeches in Stanford University (2010), Oxford University (2010) and many others. However, Michael himself admitted that his most memorable address would have to be in the UK, where he gave a speech as the inaugural global ambassador to British luminaries in the compounds of the British Parliament earlier this year (Jan., 2011).
His words have echoed across the world, calling upon youths to get involved with social enterprises and volunteerism in order to help solve pressing community issues. He was featured on CNN twice (2010 and 2011), with his speeches being broadcasted through BBC World News and his interviews with world leaders being shared by Reuters.
During his university days, in which Michael pursued his studies in New Zealand, he was a multiple time business competition champion, an achievement which he prides, having the opportunities to represent New Zealand to many large business conferences and sharing strategies and ideas with business luminaries throughout the world. He was also an active youth leader, taking up influential roles in global youth organizations. His achievements include consulting financial giant - Citigroup in Hong Kong for one of his competitions to winning the spot for the Top 10 Global Best Social Enterprise Business Project in New York for Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) World Cup to being the only student from New Zealand to be invited to the Harvard Business Conference and more.
All in all, Michael accounts his many successes as paving the way for him to do greater things for the country and the world. At the moment, he is completing his 1 year world expedition where his final few stops would bring him to Mozambique and Liberia in Africa, before returning to Malaysia. Upon his return to Malaysia, he is putting the frameworks to start a successful social enterprise concept from the UK that promote Volun-Tourism among the youths. His next 5 years plan revolves around tapping the Asian market to embrace Responsible Tourism through Volunteering during Holiday Trips, to start his investment portfolio and to establish a publishing and media house that specializes on pushing out content and events that move people to do greater things for the world!