Success through Meaningful Youth Participation and Inclusion

With the world population projected to increase by 2 billion people in the next 30 years, the discourse surrounding the involvement and emancipation of youth in driving different facets of life has to be taken into serious consideration.

The 12th of August is one of the important days among the youth as the world celebrates International Youth Day.

This year’s theme, “Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health” has seen calls for meaningful participation of young people being amplified.

The youth make up more than 60 percent of the world population and their role as a key base for socio-economic and political transformation must not be taken for granted.

This, therefore, means that the youth should ensure that planetary health, the well-being of both humans and that of the earth is a major priority especially with child mortality falling, life expectancy going up in some developed countries.

Thus, planetary health must be at the top of the youth agenda in the 21st century. As such relevant authorities must be cautious that it will not be achieved without the meaningful participation of young people.

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change observes that: “Human health and the health of our planet are inextricably linked, and that our civilisation depends on human health, flourishing natural systems, and the wise stewardship of natural resources”.

However, it should be noted that beyond the exploitation of resources, there are other global issues that need young people’s meaningful participation in addressing them. These include but are not limited to poverty reduction, climate change mitigation amongst others.

For countries like Zimbabwe whose constitution according to section 20 talks about the need to mainstream young people into political, social and economic spheres of life, must expeditiously implement such provisions to ensure that the youth make a meaningful contribution to the country’s development.

Source: Centre for Innovation and Technology

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