The Crazy Dream: One Young World and Thailand

Ashleigh Rolle

From a Dream to a Reality

With One Young World 2014 set to happen in Dublin in a little over a month from now people are obviously showing a great amount of excitement.

Also stirring excitement is the massive honour bestowed upon the city of Bangkok of hosting the One Young World 2015 Summit. From welcoming delegates with a flotilla of boats down the River Chao Phraya to opening up a venue usually only reserved for Thai royalty (Sanam Luan) the Thai bid pulled out all the stops.

I had the chance to sit with my good friend Pearly Ingakul who was the brain behind it all and turned one dreamy conversation into a crazy reality. First of all congratulations on what was most certainly one of the most heartwarming bid wins since One Young World Zurich in 2011 when we found out that Johannesburg would be the host city of 2013.

Clearly you were excited and overwhelmed about the win, but walk me through your thought process that night. What exactly were you thinking the moment Kate said the magic word ‘Bangkok’?

Let me just take this opportunity to say a big ‘Thank You’ to Mindthis. To Shaaz and you Ashleigh for all the support during the bidding process as Mindthis was the platform I used to get my words out to the public during Thailand’s political crisis. So really you should also congratulate yourselves for having so much faith in Thailand and especially in me.

That night was one of the greatest nights of my life, emotions were running high and I kept on telling myself that if we didn’t win, the hard work will be over and I will take a long break to get over it but if we win then the real hard work would start and that what kept me sane until Kate announced that Bangkok won, it was so overwhelming that I can’t even put it into words, that moment marked the new beginning of my life and the highest accomplishment I have had so far for my country.

Seeing, as this will be the first time OYW will be held in Asia. Can we look forward to collaboration from surrounding Asian countries during next year’s summit?

That was the reason why Bangkok was pushing to host OYW 2015 as we want to be the first Asian country to host this prestige summit. We want to involve as many countries in our region as much as we can, one way or another but I can’t say more as it might ruin the highlights, but you can definitely count on seeing Asian countries uniting for this summit.

“She believed she could, so she did” its what Allishia Bauman (One Young World ambassador from the USA) has been using to describe the crazy amazing win that was the Bangkok bid. It’s an inspiring quote and has been circulating ever since. What message do you think this sends to APEC women (women in general really) and do you think this same message will prevail in 2015’s summit?

I love that quote! The message in this quote is simple, believe in yourself and you will succeed. It may not come easy for others but once you set your mind on something and you focus and determine, the right time will come and you will shine.

I am so sure that this message will spread out even more and not just at the 2015’s summit, this message captures what it is to be apart of the OYW family. The majority of OYW ambassadors walk out of the summit with fire in their heart and determination in their soul, we are out there to create change, we believed we could, so we did.

So I know you can’t spill a lot of info yet but can you give us a sneak peek as to what we can expect at the summit in Bangkok?


What are you most excited about as it pertains to showing the international community Thailand and all her wonders?

It brings so much joy to my life that the whole world can really see what Thailand is all about and not just what it is portraying on the news. OYW Bangkok will be the new chapter for all of us Thais, it shows that youth around the world have faith in us and want to help Thailand, to come back even stronger than before. No country is perfect, but it’s fair to say that through imperfections, Thailand is still one of the most magical countries in the world.

Before we say goodbye, I obviously cant wait until 2015 to attend what is sure to be one thing you can tell potential delegate in order to encourage them to attend One Young World?

In the past, OYW summits were only hosted in first world countries so for OYW to have carefully selected Thailand to host the 2015 summit, being the first Asian country and the first Newly industrialized country to host this, you are probably wonder why, all the answers will be at the OYW Bangkok 2015 Summit. See you next year!