Applying Knowledge and Experience from
IATSS Forum & Paying Forward to Community

Participant's Voices


  • Country : Cambodia
  • Forum : 55th batch (2016 Spring Forum)
Greetings from Phnom Penh, Cambodia! I am extremely excited to take part in the 55th batch IATSS Forum in mid-May 2016 as it is my first time being awarded a scholarship for the training abroad. It has been my longing dream to visit or study in Japan and now my day is happening. It will be my golden chance to learn about leadership approach, exchanging professional experience from ASEAN countries’ participants and building up teamwork across the board. I do hope to observe best practice and successful factors to be a good team leader from professors and business leaders and, on top of that, improve my public speaking through the intensive roles play and presentation during the workshop. At the same time, it should be a good opportunity for me to hear some emerging issues from south-east Asian region as well as Japan and allow me to make contribution in finding possible solutions or raising suggestions through the expression of individual or group idea. In addition, I can’t wait to explore Japan, an advanced country in the world, not only experiencing beautiful and modern landscapes but also familiarizing with Japanese tradition and culture. Lastly, I would like to express my sincere thanks to the management and all staff at IATSS Forum for organizing this event to build up capacity and good mindset for young professional which in return the individual participant will bring back some changes through his or her involvement in the social activity or creating new initiative to help the society or community regardless of small or big contribution. Warmest regards, KHEM Sokuntheary (my nickname is Theary)
Soursdey Neak Taing Ors Knea / Konichiwa Mina San! (Hello everyone) Greetings from Phnom Penh, Cambodia. It has been almost two months after returning from the IATSS program. When I start to write this report I feel missing my time in Japan with my dearest diversity friends, IATSS staff, volunteers, host family, etc. My 57 days at IATSS Forum was recorded as my first scholarship studying abroad. Let me share my personal experience and invaluable lessons learnt from the IATSS program. In the first start, I had some challenges of doing the job as a group as I wanted to achieve high result within limited time such as creating 55th Batch logo, group objective, group motto, and puzzling out the games. Anyway, I still moved on together with the team although sometimes I felt dissatisfied and disappointed with the results and the ways of working. Later on, after going through the facilitation skill training, all participants including me started to adjust themselves, be compromised, change the way of working, and accommodate with team’s benefits rather than individual preferences. We went through several bad and good time together. For me, I learnt to think from other perspective and be a good listener. Moreover, having conflict of ideas with team members made me stressful and headache but it was my opportunity to learn new things. I noticed that there were many ways or strategies in doing things thus my idea was not always the best so that I should open my ears and eyes and look beyond the line. Furthermore, I learned to be part of the team that we not only did the job together but we complemented each other’s weakness, shared personal experiences, and used sense of humor to create a friendly environment during the group discussion. In addition to attending several lectures and sessions, the most valuable things were the time when all nineteen participants from nine countries plus one Japanese participant could explore Japan and its communities whereby receiving very warm hospitality and respect from various groups and level of people such as farmers, business leaders, mayor, NPOs, minority groups (old and disable people), students, teachers, young professional, etc. Besides the work and study, I enjoyed very much the time with some of our eighteen participants during the self-development days at Suzuka, Nagoya, Yokaichi, Fuji mountain, Kyoto, and Tokyo. I missed my time hanging out at night by my lovely bicycle with my buddies. I also missed my shopping moments and various places I visited. My digital memory captured different sceneries, funny activities and crazy-style gestures except the sad moment we had at the end of the program. I do hope to meet my teammates again in the next alumni meeting in Laos. Finally, I wish IATSS Forum the continued success and good health to all staff members. I very much appreciate the assistance, support, and guidance from all IATSS staff members (Kaneko-san, Ishi-san, Silk-san, Masumi-san, Midori-san, Mie-san, Hassy-san, Yumi-san, Tsuboi-san, Mikami-san, Tomoe-san) for their work dedication in 120% preparation and arrangement. Warmest regards, Theary