What does solidarity mean to you?

Solidarity is an important part of what it means to care about people and humanity.  It is through a sense of solidarity that generous things for other people are done. 
It is through solidarity that care for our environment is sustained.  Solidarity is necessary to overcome poverty and any crisis that befalls us. To mark International Human Solidarity Day
on December 20, Vientiane Times roamed the streets asking
young people what solidarity means to them. 


Ms Seng Leeyouawang, a first year student at the National University of Laos: In my opinion, solidarity is about helping friends.  If you help them when they are in need, they will help you too.  That is what good friends do. I came from another province to study in Vientiane and am making some good new friends. If you want help, you need to give it first and if you want love you must give it first sometimes too. When we love and care about each other, society will be peaceful with a generosity of spirit.  In a developing country like ours social unity is especially important.

Ms Youamany Lor, a second year student at the National University of Laos:  For me, love and concern for other people is solidarity. I think Lao people generally love their country and show kindness to other people. For instance, part of our nation dealing with the flood disaster in the south this year saw people everywhere rallying with donations of money and essential items. Our government still hasn’t forgotten these people either and is continuing to help them build their lives again.  This is what solidarity is about.

Ms Chailee, a Grade 6 student at Luang Namtha Secondary School: I think helping each other is what solidarity is. I always help my friends with schoolwork when they are a bit confused after a lesson. They return help to me when I have a problem too. We are all much better students because we help each other and solve problems together.  If everyone everywhere helped those around them, the world would be a much happier place.

Ms Nilundone Muensy, a third year student at the National University of Laos: It’s easy to build solidarity in our society and across the world. Everyone just needs to help those who have been less fortunate.  When people are no longer living in poverty and in desperate need, it is easier for them to offer help to other people too. Providing education and schools for children in rural areas is especially important. With education, children will be able to find jobs that will help their families. Our government is doing its best to eradicate poverty, but we all have to do our best for people who are less well off. 

Ms Tony, an employee in Xaysettha district: In my opinion, everyone should use gentle words and be polite to one another.  This means not only with your friends and colleagues but strangers you encounter in everyday life. This is what solidarity is to me.  Everything is more efficient when people listen to, and cooperate with, each other.
I would like to ask everyone to please talk kindly. With kindness I think the best things come back to you, like good friendship.  Also, national solidarity is essential for the building of civilisations.  The stronger a sense of connection is between people, the stronger a nation is too.

By Phouthong Sivongsa 
(Latest Update December 20, 2018)

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