Placing Girls and Women at the Heart of G20: A Short Newsletter from Giasinta Livia (2014)

Are you a girl eager to be involved in the economic decision-making process of the G20? Are you a girl willing to be cultivated as future leader for your country? If the answers are yes, then G(irls)20 Summit is the right place where you should belong!

This August, I got an amazing opportunity to represent Indonesia at G(irls)20 Summit 2016, held in Beijing, China. Designed similarly to the G20 Leaders’ Summit, every year, G(irls)20 Summit brings around 20 brightest girls age 18-23 years old from G20  member countries and partner countries to meet and discuss about various issues related to the advancement of girls and women. In this 2016 Summit, we have 23 delegates from Argentina to South Korea, from United Kingdom to Pakistan, from European Union to African Union, and our main discussion is based on the G20 Leaders’ commitment of 2014 to create 100 million new jobs for women by 2025.

I personally think that the program offered lots of activities that I consider once in a lifetime chance. At my first days in China, I attended several mind-blowing capacity building workshops from Burson Masteller, Norton Rose Fulbright, Bain & Company, Gates Foundation, and EGRC that covered wide-range of topics from strategic planning to communication. These companies and organizations are very professional in their fields and have been recognized globally. I am so lucky to have first-hand experience to be tutored by them. Apart from these busy activities, I also had site visits to several landmarks in China such as the Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall of China.

I also got the chance to be invited to a special reception held in the house of Canada’s Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China, Ambassador Saint Jacques. Every delegate is given a pack of business cards, and we are encouraged to exchange our cards with the guests in the Ambassador’s house. Though I was reluctant to do this at first, I managed to collect all my guts and mingle with the guests. And now, I have the business card of UN Women Country Director, US Consulate General, First Secretary of China Foreign Ministry, and other respected guests I met there!

The last two days were the Summit day and the Communique Day. Like other Summit, in G(irls)20 Summit we had several  panel of discussion and invited public audience to participate. All the panelists and keynote speakers were very passionate in whatever they do and became endless source of inspiration for me and the other delegates. At the last day, after all experience and knowledge we gained from the previous days, all the delegates sat together and formulated a Communique to be presented to the G20 Leaders. We spent literally day and night to compose this Communique until finally we are proud to say that this is what we aspire for the inclusion of more and more girls and women at the heart of G20 decision-making process. You could read our Communique by clicking on this link:

Although the Summit is over, the best part is not over yet. Now all of my cohort of G(irls)20 Delegates are back in their own countries, ready to launch their own post-summit initiatives to impact more girls and women in 23 different countries. For me, the post-summit initiative that I would be running is entitled Proyek Kewirausahaan Ibu-ibu Cikapundung, or Mothers’ Entrepreneurship Project of Cikapundung. In this social project, I will be giving entrepreneurship trainings and intensive mentoring for 30 women who live in Cikapundung Area, at the back of UNPAR Campus, to be able to acquire entrepreneurial skills to start up their own businesses. To achive this goal, I am partnering with the Lecturers’ Community Development Program of UNPAR (Comdev UNPAR). Now, we are still in the phase of landscaping the potential of the women in the area, and we hope our project would continue to develop and benefit more women in the future.

Joining G(irls)20 Summit has made my eyes wide-opened about so many things in life. I learned that I should not be easily satisfied with what I accomplished in my life, but instead, I should never stop learning from various sources around me. On the other hand, I also learned to be more confident and persistent in causes I believe. Lastly, I realize that whatever accomplishment that I achieved in life, the biggest accomplishment would be when I am able to share what I have to people around me.

Giasinta Livia Delegate representing Indonesia at G(irls)20 Summit 2016                                                                                                                     Third year student of International Relations                                                                         Parahyangan Catholic University, Indonesia