Connecting Cultures: Youth Explore Cultural Heritage in Oman

November 2022












From Tuesday, November 8 until Saturday, November 12, twenty youth Network Members participated in a program called ‘Connecting Cultures,’ in the lead-up to the Network for Religious and Traditional Peacemakers’ Advisory Group Meeting in Oman. This program is designed to bring together young global leaders from around the globe for a powerful five-day experience in Oman, exploring cultural heritage sites. This fellowship opportunity was graciously sponsored by the Oman Endowment for Religious Affairs.

Throughout their week, the young fellows hiked in the desert, watched turtles hatch on the beach, and learned about Oman’s culture of promoting tolerance and peace. Each day involved working as a team to overcome challenges and to provide the opportunity and space for intensive debate and discussion around shared values, thinking about how one’s own culture might be perceived by others, identifying the causes of and solutions to cultural misunderstanding, and, most importantly, identifying what our responsibilities are in society when the participants return home.

This fellowship offered the youth the opportunity to network and build relationships with each other before meeting the fuller Network Membership. During the Advisory Group Meeting, fellows had the opportunity to speak and moderate panels and breakout discussions and report to the entire Membership present about their earlier program. Youth fellows also met with the Oman Minister for the Endowment of Religious Affairs, Minister Al Mammari, to also express what they had experienced and learned.

Youth Reflections

Oman Connecting Cultures Program: A Participants Reflection

Written by Nyasha Freeman

Meeting new people and venturing into new spaces can sometimes be a scary experience, as the journey to Oman drew closer, I was a bit nervous on the prospect of being in the desert for the first time, being in the midst of unfamiliar youthful faces knowing how cultural and religious diversity could sometimes pose significant challenges to human interactions in our society. The most intriguing part was…

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Life Inspires Me: A Self Reflection on Hope and Interfaith Harmony

Written by Sara Laura Gonzalez

In November 2022, I had the opportunity to witness the birth of green turtles, the most common species in Oman. Unexpectedly, we saw how the little ones burst out of the sand one after the other. When they are ready to be born, they share vibrations that allow them to come out of their eggs together and, contrary to how I’ve been taught…

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