April 11, 2024

Innovative Diplomacy - Ramadan Cultural Night: Citizen Diplomacy Certification Week 9

Utah Global Diplomacy is delighted to have launched its Citizen Diplomacy Certification as part of the International Leadership Academy! During the ten week course, the Citizen Diplomacy Certification cohort will dive into world affairs topics taught by dynamic local subject matter experts, and elevate their professional experience through immersive, hands-on activities.  

This week our topic covered a powerful diplomatic tool: Innovative Diplomacy. Innovative diplomacy includes topics such as cultural, educational, and sports diplomacy. We focused on cultural diplomacy and invited Shayma Salih, Senior Director of Operations with the Emerald Project, a local nonprofit dedicated to combating Islamophobia and creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for Muslims in Utah. She gave an overview of Islam, Ramadan, and Eid al-Fatir. She asked the group two reflective questions that we should all consider regularly:

1. Reflect on areas of your life where you could benefit from practicing self-discipline and mindfulness, similar to the discipline observed during Ramadan fasting. How can you incorporate regular moments of reflection and self-discipline into your daily routine?

2. Think about ways to foster a sense of community and connection within your social circles and beyond, drawing inspiration from the communal spirit and solidarity observed during Ramadan. How can you strengthen bonds with your neighbors, colleagues, or local community members?

We ended the discussion with some henna and a meal from Laziz Kitchen. We finished the night by reiterating the power of storytelling and practiced the art of storytelling through table topics from The Moth. Innovative diplomacy, especially cultural diplomacy, is a unique way to build relationships and strengthen bonds across cultural divides. This powerful tool can be applied at the local, national, and global level to increase awareness and foster a greater sense of community and collaboration. 

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Learn more about our Citizen Diplomacy Certification and other opportunities with our International Leadership Academy!