Youth need ‘seat at the table’ to lead struggle for better future: UN chief

Youth need ‘seat at the table’ to lead struggle for better future: UN chief

NEW YORK, 13th August, 2021 – Young people are on the “frontlines of the struggle to build a better future,” the UN chief said on Thursday, International Youth Day.
“They are tackling inequities in food security, biodiversity loss, threats to our environment and much more,” Secretary-General António Guterres spelled out in his message for the day.
And noting that COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the “dire need for transformational change,” he upheld that young people must be “full partners in that effort.”
From gender equality to education and skills development, the top UN official highlighted that youth exhibit drive, creativity, and commitment.
“But young people cannot do it on their own,” he stated. “They need allies to make sure they are engaged, included and understood.”
Guided by the UN system-wide youth strategy, Youth2030, the Organisation is strengthening its work for and with young people worldwide.
“I urge everyone to guarantee young people a seat at the table as we build a world based on inclusive, fair, and sustainable development for all,” said Mr. Guterres.
Meanwhile, the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth welcomed thousands of young people from across the globe as it kicked off the first-ever, all virtual Youth Lead Innovation Festival.
Over two days, participants will be discussing the importance of innovation and technology to achieve the SDGs and support COVID-19 recovery.
Despite facing multidimensional challenges in their day-to-day lives, UN Youth Envoy Jayathma Wickramanayake said, “time and time again we see young people at the frontlines of developing new solutions and becoming pillars of their communities”.
“Young people of today are digital natives that routinely contribute to the resilience of their communities, proposing innovative solutions, driving social progress and inspiring transparent and inclusive political change,” she highlighted.
International Youth Day on 12th August is an awareness day designated by the United Nations. The purpose of the day is to draw attention to a given set of cultural and legal issues surrounding youth.
The theme of International Youth Day 2021, “Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health”, highlights the success of such a global effort will not be achieved without the meaningful participation of young people.