Kanawha County Delegate Meshea Poore and several other young political and policy leaders from throughout the United States are traveling to Pakistan and India in an effort to learn from leaders in those countries about the challenges and successes within their governments.
“This is such an exciting opportunity for me – to be able to gain firsthand insight into their decision-making processes and how their cultures affect governing,” Delegate Poore said.
The 13-day trip is hosted by the American Council of Young Political Leaders, a bipartisan, nonprofit organization with the mission of introducing rising political and policy leaders to international affairs, and to promote mutual understanding, respect and friendship by cultivating long-lasting relationship among young leaders.
Founded in 1966, the ACYPL conducts bipartisan international exchanges, enabling emerging leaders (aged 25 to 40) to experience directly the political and cultural dynamics of other countries. U.S. delegates are chosen annually from a pool of approximately 1000 local, state and national nominations by governors, members of Congress, national and state political party chairs, state legislative leaders, board members, alumni, corporate contributors and other ACYPL supporters.
Delegate Poore and eight others will leave Sunday, May 15, and travel first to Islamabad, where they will spend several days hearing from national and local leaders, including the Deputy Speaker of Pakistan’s National Assembly, regarding the country’s parliamentary system, civil-military relations, tax structure, energy needs and women’s rights, among other issues.
“We will also meet with the Editor of the Daily Pakistan newspaper, whom I think will provide valuable insight into how Pakistan’s government is perceived by its people,” Poore said.
The delegation will then travel to New Delhi and Akluj for similar seminars with India’s policy makers, including the Speaker of the Delhi State Legislative Assembly, and other young leaders.
“We will also participate in some valuable social activities, such as dinner with local political, social and business leaders, and tour historic and religiously significant sites,” Poore said. “We will be meeting with members of the Indian Youth Congress regarding youth politics in India, and it is my hope that interaction will blossom future productive foreign policy dialogue.
“I am thrilled to be part of an effort to foster understanding among our countries and to learn from leaders who, while in many instances govern under very different circumstances, share our desire to serve and improve the lives of others. I look forward to bringing back the knowledge I gain to my colleagues here at home.”
Delegate Poore noted that while the heightened unrest in Pakistan raises concerns, ACYPL is in close contact with U.S. Embassy and U.S. Department of State, along with security throughout their travels, and the program will be rerouted if deemed necessary.