JAS DIPLOMAT – SOCIAL PROJECT
OF THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS
The strategic programme article of President Nursultan Nazarbayev titled “Course towards the Future: Modernisation of Kazakhstan's Identity" is implemented with the use of project management. To this end, project offices have been established at the national and regional levels. They were designed to provide a systematic approach to the planning and implementation of specific actions within certain projects.
It was the project office where the idea of mentoring Kazakh diplomats was created. In May, the project with a pilot name Jas Diplomat was presented in the Central Project Office for the Rukhani Zhangyru (Modernisation of Kazakhstan's Identity) programme in Astana. The Ministry of Education and Science of Kazakhstan, Akimat of Astana and diplomatic corps were invited to its joint implementation. After several weeks of discussions and meetings, the project was launched in the building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan on Oct. 26.
Jas Diplomat helped to consolidate the efforts of Kazakh and foreign diplomats, teachers and students and to direct these efforts to develop a correct understanding among students of the capital's schools of the intricacies of the diplomatic service. Thus, Kazakh diplomats volunteered to contribute to the process of expanding the horizons and worldview of the younger generation – the future of our country.
UN Model Meeting as part of the Jas Diplomat Project in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Astana, Oct. 28.
Jas Diplomat is focused on the development of the pragmatism and competitiveness of Kazakh society – two of the six core messages of Rukhani Zhangyru. The objectives of the project are consistent with the objectives of the programme article on the development of the path to openness and knowledge in order to adequately respond to the challenges of the global world.
Jas Diplomat aims to strengthen the image of Kazakhstan as a country that cares about raising an educated, open and thoughtful young generation. It is of particular importance and relevance in the context of 2019, declared by the President as the Year of Youth.
The educational project also creates a favorable basis for intercultural communication and trilingual approach in the educational process with the active use of English.
Seven foreign embassies accredited in Kazakhstan responded to the project – Brazil, Georgia, Germany, Japan, Poland, Turkey and South Korea. Seven schools of Astana were engaged in the project. As a result of the draw held at the official opening, the school-embassy groups were formed. Pupils of the schools drew sealed envelopes and called the name of the embassy to cooperate with. Various educational events took place within the framework of this cooperation – diplomats held lectures at schools, invited children to their diplomatic missions and told about the history, culture and interesting facts of their country. The children thanked them by organising concerts and presentations and by giving memorable calendars with joint photographs as a gift. All events were actively covered in social networks under the hashtag #jasdiplomat.
At the end, the schoolchildren took part in a UN Model meeting organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation with the Central Asian UN Model Coordination Office and volunteers from among students of Nazarbayev University.
The children spoke on behalf of the countries with whose diplomats they worked under Jas Diplomat. The moderators were the students of the Nazarbayev Intellectual School of Physics and Mathematics in Astana.
The meeting was held on the eve of Independence Day and attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan Kairat Abdrakhmanov, who thanked the school students and representatives of the embassies for their active participation in the Jas Diplomat project. He told the children stories from personal experience as a Permanent Representative of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the United Nations and advised them to study hard and return to the Foreign Ministry as young professionals. The presence of foreign diplomats at the final meeting was also exciting. They came to support their pupils, with whom they had the opportunity to get to know each other closer, worry about them and listen attentively to the performance of each young speaker. Thus, Jin-dong Kim, Counsellor of the Embassy of South Korea in Kazakhstan, noted that the Jas Diplomat project is a great opportunity for Astana students to learn the culture and traditions of other nations.
The theme of the meeting, Future Energy, was not accidentally chosen from the list of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As you know, the 17 goals for transforming our world by 2030, put forward by the UN, were adopted by world leaders in September 2015 and entered into force in early 2016. Successful implementation of the goals directly depends on ensuring continuity of efforts between generations of diplomats. To this end, it is important that young people have the proper understanding about global challenges and certain knowledge and skills to achieve and support the SDGs. This continuity can be achieved through educational projects such as Jas Diplomat.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR. Aisha Mukasheva – Manager of the Jas Diplomat project. From April-December 2018, she worked in the Central Project Office for the Rukhani Zhangyru (Modernisation of Kazakhstan's Identity) programme on the matters related to the Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA). In 2007-2017, she worked in the MFA system, including the Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Washington, USA (2015-2017).
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