In recognition of over two decades of Serial Entrepreneurship and Youth Empowerment Leadership, Founder and CEO of Meghalaya-based Avenues, Mark Laitflang Stone was felicitated with the inaugural edition of AsiaOne’s Asian Youth Empowerment Leader Award 2O2O-21 at the 15th Edition Asia-Africa Business and Social Forum: Awards & Business Summit, which was held on 26th October 2021 at JW Marriott Marquis Hotel, Dubai.
In an effort to promote mutual welfare and facilitate fresher avenues of economic cooperation, networking and investment opportunities in Asia, Middle East and Africa on a global platform, the one-day mega summit was joined by esteemed dignitaries which included ambassadors from 8 countries, international business and social leaders such as Dr. Aman Puri – Consul General of the Republic of India in Dubai, Mr. Malraj de Silva – Ambassador of Sri Lanka in Abu Dhabi, Ms. Amal Alblooshi – Director, National Program for Wellbeing, Ministry of Community Development, Government of UAE and Mr. Victor Haruta, Ambassador of The Republic of Moldova to the UAE. Prominent personalities from The Indian Film Industry of Bollywood including Ms. Urvashi Rautela – Philanthropist & Actress, Ms. Daisy Shah – Actress, Mr. Vivek Oberoi – Actor, Mr. S. Sreesanth – Cricketer and Actor and Mr. Gulshan Grover – Philanthropist, Producer & Actor were also present. More than 200 Brand and Leader Award winners from diverse fields such as Diplomacy, Women Empowerment, Youth Empowerment and Entrepreneurship were felicitated on the occasion.
H.E. Dr. Aman Puri, Honourable Chief Guest, spoke at the event, saying, “This is a special evening because we are witnessing something truly unique as eminent personalities from both the diplomatic and business communities are being honoured on a single platform.” He went on to say that it was encouraging to see renowned Indian personalities from the fields of art, culture and business coming together to engage with their global counterparts, and showcase the best of Indian innovation, knowledge, creativity, and heritage as India is on its way towards becoming a 5 Trillion Dollar economy.
Although the Summit has gone through 14 editions over the years, it is for the first time that the platform is being used to recognise Youth Empowerment efforts in the region. Taking this decision forward to highlight the pressing need for economic progress through youth empowerment efforts, and following a 6-month nomination process for this award, AsiaOne Magazine recognises the efforts of the Mark Laitflang Stone-led Avenues for its role in pioneering Life Coaching and Personal Development interventions that build Communication, Clarity and Confidence in young people across Northeast India. It is also the first time that a homegrown initiative from Northeast India is being recognised in this context on an international stage.
Speaking at the Summit, Mr. Mark Laitflang Stone said, “There are a number of youth communities around the world, especially in emerging economies, who do not have equal access to equal opportunities. Our interventions in Life Coaching and Soft Skills are driving the region towards economic prosperity simply because we know, that if our young people don’t have the ability to celebrate the effort without being criticized for failure, there really will be no progress.” He went on to thank the Government of Meghalaya, Government of India, Team Avenues, the Shillong community and his family for their support over the years.
It is in recognition of Mr. Mark Laitflang’s twenty-year journey as an award-winning Serial Entrepreneur, Life Coach and Impact Speaker that AsiaOne Magazine has bestowed upon him this prestigious award. From the age of 17, he has led high-impact, benchmarking businesses and teams in Hospitality Services, Skills Development, Events, IT, Telecom and Consulting. At the age of 20, he founded AVENUES – Northeast India’s pioneering Life Coaching and Personal Excellence Training Social Enterprise – where he leads a committed team of young life coaches whose meaningful interventions in soft skills, leadership, capacity building, life coaching and personal development have touched the lives of over 1,00,000 young people across Northeast India. An internationally sought-after Keynote and Impact Speaker, Mark’s coaching initiatives have led him to address audiences in India, Switzerland, Thailand and Brunei.
A culmination of these efforts is visible in a flagship programme – Aspire Meghalaya – which is working towards nurturing Confidence, Wellbeing and Aspirations through talent-identification efforts in Meghalaya. The programme has so far touched over 10,000 lives across the State’s districts since 2019.
It may be mentioned that AsiaOne is an international media house and the only Pan-Asia Business & News magazine whose pioneering Platform of Excellence recognises and felicitates brand leaders in Asia, Africa and the GCC.