Dear friends, supporters, and colleagues,
What a remarkable gathering it has been! We are immensely grateful to witness the unity and shared purpose that have brought us all together to discuss the pressing issues facing our community. While we do not claim to possess all the answers, we can proudly say that we have initiated a dialogue unlike anything seen before.
Organizing conventions and symposiums is no small feat, but these events serve as the most effective platform for discussing, learning, and engaging with the challenges and concerns we face. As a small but growing community within a larger, diverse society that values individual success, we, at NAYA, have strived to present the issues and concerns of our community to the relevant government, private, and public agencies in a professional and straightforward manner. This approach, we believe, is key to strengthening the economic, cultural, educational, and political ties between the United States of America and the Republic of Yemen.
For the first time in our community’s history, the Symposium delved into critical topics such as the status of women in Yemen and abroad, the challenges faced by our second generation and youth, and the state of our civil and human rights in light of the Patriot Act. Additionally, we explored numerous other issues that affect the lives of everyone. While we recognize that we cannot solve all our problems in one gathering, we have taken the crucial first step by acknowledging the existence of these challenges.
Our mission and goal for the symposium were to initiate the search for solutions, and we can proudly and humbly state that we exceeded our expectations. The overwhelmingly positive response from the speakers and invited guests, numbering over ninety, is a testament to our presence and the willingness of others to collaborate when we approach them in the right manner. Our issues are not vastly different from those faced by other communities around us. The distinction lies in how we articulate and address them.
In public, community, and political work, disagreements are bound to arise. However, the best way to navigate and resolve these differences is through cultivating respect, acceptance, and the willingness to agree to disagree. By understanding the interests and concerns of others, we can better convey our own. It is through hard work that mistakes are made and lessons are learned. We sincerely apologize for any shortcomings and assure you that we listen, adapt, and change as necessary to improve our efforts.
We earnestly seek your feedback, criticisms, and thoughts for the future. Moreover, we extend our deepest gratitude to all those who attended, supported, and volunteered to make this event possible. It would not have been achievable without your contributions. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts at NAYA, and we eagerly anticipate working with you and seeing you in the days to come.