The Young Buddhist Association of Malaysia (YBAM) is the leading Buddhist youth organisation in Malaysia. Through our conviction in the Buddha’s mission of compassion, growth and liberation, we continuously promote positive lifestyle in developing a society of wisdom, compassion and gratitude. Since its formation in 1970, YBAM has actively involved in establishing Buddhist organisations nationwide, propagating the learning of Dharma among the youths and providing leadership training for them. Using this strong foundation that we helped to build, local Buddhist organisations have accomplished great progress in the development of local Buddhist communities. YBAM continuously dedicate itself to develop Malaysian Buddhism.

YBAM coordinates more than 260 member organisations through its 13 State Liaison Committees all over Malaysia. Besides, YBAM also coordinates the varsities’ Buddhist societies (including teacher training colleges), secondary schools’ Buddhist societies and Buddhist Youth Fellowship through the various Standing Committees. YBAM also participates actively in the Malaysian Youth Council (MBM), the Eight Major Chinese Youth Organisation (EMCO) and the World Fellowship of Buddhist Youth. To further enhance the involvement of Buddhists in nation building, YBAM regularly expresses its opinion on the current affairs and Buddhist rights through the media.

Dharma Propagation ~ Practice of Dharma is the motivation force to purify the society

YBAM is making an effort to provide the Malaysian Buddhist community with better quality, creativity and systematic Dharma propagation service. Dharma speakers who are well-equipped with knowledge on the latest social developments are trained and manual for Dharma Speakers are compiled so that they could effectively carry out Dharma propagation work to the youths.

Today, Member Organisations of YBAM are capable of conducting Dharma propagation activities on their own. The YBAM invites local as well as overseas Dharma speakers of different schools of Buddhism to give Dharma talks in the country. The YBAM also conducts Advance Dharma Study Class, seminars on specific topics and Dharma cultivations from time to time to meet the demand of the Buddhist community.

Education ~ Uplifting the quality of Buddhist youths comes from firm foundation on education and cultivation

While helping the member organisations to set up Children Dharma Class or Sunday Dharma Class, the YBAM is making an effort to uplift the quality of teachers and teaching materials for Sunday Dharma Class. The YBAM has compiled the “Pre-school Dharma Study Curriculum”, “Primary School Dharma Study Texts” and “Elementary Dharma Curriculum for Varsities”. The YBAM also organises training courses on “Children Dharma Study Class Teachers’ Tribe.”

Throughout the years, the YBAM jointly organises the “National Buddhist Examination” with Malaysian Buddhist Association and the response is overwhelming. The examination has eventually become an appraisal for Buddhist education.

Culture ~ Practise Buddhist life and bring together the Buddhist community

Culture is the continuation of inheriting a religion. Buddhist family is an important part of the Buddhist community. Therefore, the YBAM conducts mass taking refuge ceremony, Buddhist wedding, and parenting workshops in order to materialise the concept of Buddhist family.

The YBAM organised the “Venerable Asvaghosa Buddhist Literature Award” in 1998 and 2008 to encourage Buddhist literature creations. On the musical side, the “Melody of Truth and Beauty” series has created a wave for local Buddhist hymns and brewed the competition on Buddhist hymns for “Melody of Truth and Beauty Award” with the objective to bring together the force of the vibrant Buddhist youths and to nurture budding writers and singers for Buddhist hymns.

Welfare ~ Promote compassion and relief, express the spirit of Bodhisattva who benefits others

The YBAM made the first move to launch blood donation campaign in the country in the early 70’s and successfully changed the wrong mindset of the Chinese community on blood donation. The YBAM took a step further and launched the organ donation campaign and such campaigns have successfully aroused the awareness and concern of the public on blood and organ donations.

Buddhism emphasises on the physical and spiritual health of individuals and because of this, the YBAM set up and motivated the PELITA Psychological Guidance Unit with local Buddhism as its foundation.

In addition, the YBAM also positively responds to and participates in charity and relief activities. In 2008, the relief fund campaigns launched by the YBAM for the typhoon victims in Myanmar and the flood victims in Sechuan, China were well received by the public.

Publications ~ Dharma propagation through Buddhist literature

“Dharma propagation through Buddhist literatures” is the lofty ideal of the YBAM in its publication works. The materials published by the YBAM over the years covers all schools of Buddhism, with precise contents and far reaching influence.

“Buddhist Digest”, “Eastern Horizon” and “Berita YBAM” bulletin are published by YBAM on the regular basis. To date, the YBAM has published and circulated more than 100 types of Buddhist pamphlets in Chinese, Bahasa Malaysia and English. The circulation of these pamphlets helped the penetration of basic Buddhism into every corner of the country.

Leadership and organisation training ~ training the young Buddhist leaders and to promote the development of Malaysian Buddhism

The uplift of leaders and organisations is the motivation force of YBAM to move forward and to face the challenges. The YBAM has organised different training courses ranging from region, state and national levels, induction course, Buddhist management and administration course for council members, committee members as well as ordinary members for their self improvement.

Furthermore, the YBAM also conducts training camps and interaction camps for secondary schools and varsity students and provide consultation on related activities. The YBAM also carries out long term plan on training of Dharma speakers and leaders with the hope that it could provide a group of young Buddhist leaders with quality for the Buddhist community in Malaysia.

External relationships ~ setting root in homeland with global vision

YBAM is the one and only national Buddhist youth organisation recognised by the government to represent the Malaysian Buddhist youths. YBAM is also a member of the Majlis Belia Malaysia. It helps to protect the legitimate rights of the Buddhist youths through the participation in the activities of the Majlis Belia Malaysia and Ministry of Youth and Sports. The YBAM is active in motivation the international Buddhist youth campaign and maintain good rapport with the World Buddhist Fellowship and World Fellowship of Buddhist Youth (WFBY).

Current issues ~ Expressing the concern of Buddhists on current society

The YBAM has, from time to time, expressed its opinions on important social issues through various media on behalf of the Buddhist community with the faith bestowed by the Buddhist youths in the country and the foundation formed by member organisations all over the country. For instance, the YBAM rejects Malaysia as an Islamic country and calls upon the government to abolish the Internal Security Act which fails to conform to human rights. The YBAM has at the same time organised various types of seminars and forums to discuss current issues and Buddhist issues.

Buddhist societies in university colleges and secondary schools ~ nurturing the future pillars of Buddhism

The YBAM is relentlessly making an effort to coordinate with the Buddhist activities in secondary schools, varsiyies, teachers’ training colleges and other institutions oh higher learning and to provide consultations and trainings with the objective of raising the quality, thinking, awareness and leadership skills of the Buddhist youths in university colleges and teachers’ training colleges.

The YBAM has also helped in setting up of Buddhist societies in secondary schools and to set up Youth Buddhist Fellowships in various Buddhist associations. The YBAM published guidelines on activities to be carried out by young adult groups so that more youths could be attracted to take part in the Buddhist activities and learn the Dharma. The YBAM, at the same time, suggests the government to implement Buddhist study in schools and other non-Islamic courses and to ensure that setting up of Buddhist societies in schools will not be hindered.

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