OPINION, TRAVEL - January 20, 2023

Celebrating Cultural Evolution: The Global Citizen Forum 2022


In November 2022, Bahrain Confidential attended the 2-day Annual Global Citizen Forum, on the beautiful grounds of the Waldorf Astoria, a five-star beach resort in Ras al Khaimah, UAE. Over 650 speakers and guests from 90 countries participated in the event, including celebrities, entrepreneurs, and social changemakers.

Singer-songwriter, Ricky Martin, bestselling author, Deepak Chopra, American singer, Ashanti, Grammy award-winning musician, Wyclef Jean, radio presenter, Kris Fade, and Huda Beauty founders, Huda and Mona Kattan were among the star appearances at the event.

So what was the event all about?

It was a magnificently organized event with speakers across multiple fields speaking of ‘self-growth’ and ‘human connection’ through their sessions. The theme of the two-day forum was Human Metamorphosis and deep-dived into topics such as human interconnectivity, community, and personal development.

Armand Arton, the founder of the Forum welcomed guests on day one with an important message: “If we can imagine a new world – together, we can also create one.” Arton emphasised that human potential can be unlocked through the power of collaboration and communities.

Armand Arton ((Image Credits: GCF 2022)

Over the two days, this message was repeated through several examples and talks. As one of the key speakers and the most anticipated guest at the event, Ricky Martin said, “Together, we can transform the world.” He highlighted how his nonprofit organization (Ricky Martin Foundation) was working to improve the well-being of children around the world through education, health, and social justice initiatives.

Ricky Martin (Image Credits: GCF 2022)

A large group of participants gathered at the beach of the resort where Indian-American author, Deepak Chopra held a talk. A firm believer in the power of quantum mechanics to heal the body and alternative medicine, Chopra guided his audience through a session on connecting with their inner selves.

Deepak Chopra (Image Credits: GCF 2022)

Speakers during the event spoke on various subjects such as ‘Anti-Racism’, ‘Diversity’, the ‘climate emergency’, green energy, carbon footprint, equity, support for refugees, and concepts such as ESG (environmentalism, sustainability, and governance). All of the topics were tied to the overarching theme of Human Metamorphosis and the power of collaboration among people across borders, cultures, and identities.

The breezy November weather was perfect for socializing and networking while taking in the beautiful venue that was the Waldorf Astoria. The scenic outdoors with a large hot-air balloon, a metal human statue, the setting sun, and the open sea made for great pictures for anyone looking to spruce up their Instagram feeds. In the morning, early birds had gathered for group yoga with celebrity instructor Eddie Stern.

The Gala

Culminating the event with a bang, the Forum hosted a star-studded gala where all the attendees were dressed to impress! The red-carpet event aimed to raise funds for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Ricky Martin Foundation, and the Global Gift Foundation. Over 800 attendees celebrated milestones of global citizenship with musical talents and performers such as Wyclef Jean.

The two-day event was truly one-of-a-kind and held on a massive scale, bringing a diverse group of people together. We enjoyed meeting some of the big global names and experiencing the warm hospitality of the Ras al Khaimah Tourism Board as well as the Waldorf Astoria.

The Global Citizen Forum will be back with its Butterfly Effect Trilogy’s second chapter. Stay tuned for all the updates here.

About the Global Citizen Forum:

The Global Citizen Forum® is a Canadian non-profit organization that describes itself as “driven by a global community of leaders and catalyzers unlocking the potential of global citizenship, driven to bridge dialogue with action to unlock the potential of global citizenship for generations to come”.

They run events, workshops, experiences and training that focus on challenges and solutions within five adaptive pillars — governance, technology, mobility, sustainability and culture.

For more info contact the Global Citizen Forum: +1(855)9356665 (North America), +971(4)4569220 (MENA region), and +382(20)672427 (Europe). Email: contact@globalcitizenforum.org

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