Young people are often categorised as politically disengaged and apathetic. A program backed by Australia and the UN is seeking to shake this image, engaging youth and giving them a voice at the highest level of global politics.

In 2015, thousands of fishermen from Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos were found on islands in Maluku province in Indonesia. These men had been trafficked into servitude, worked in inhumane conditions on fishing boats, and were then left stranded, without the means to care for themselves or return home.

I was struck by the beauty of the country and the determination of its people. Some of my ancestors sailed from Scotland to be missionaries in the Pacific, and I can see why they thought they had arrived in the Garden of Eden.

I met Fadila on a field visit with the World Food Programme (WFP) to an informal settlement in Akkar Lebanon, a stone’s throw from Syria, divided only by a small mountain range.

As part of Australia’s commitment to greater recognition of human rights, our embassies in the Mekong are working with governments and civil society to promote rights for LGBTI people.

Although Serbia is a European country, the sanctions of the 1990s and poor growth since have had a devastating effect on the quality of life for many people. Every second woman in rural Serbia is formally unemployed and the statistics are even worse for older women and women from disadvantaged groups.

As Australia’s first Indigenous Ambassador, I am delighted to have been involved in this indigenous-led project that aims to protect the integrity of indigenous design. It will improve the representation of indigenous culture in design and will have wider benefits for the world’s indigenous peoples and for Australia.