Youth in SIDS

My World, My SIDS launched by UNESCO in partnership with UNICEF

Two of the priorities areas for UNESCO are youth and SIDS. In the light of this, the Youth Visioning for Island Living initiative was created to allow SIDS youth to participate in the 10 year review of the Barbados Programme of Action (BPoA) which took place in Mauritius in January 2005. The success and positive impact of this initiative motivated UNESCO to renew this experience and ensure the involvement of SIDS youth in the 20 year-review process of the BPoA. In early 2013 “My World, my SIDS” was launched in partnership with UNICEF and other international, regional and national partners. This enabled 70 young people to participate in trainings on SIDS and sustainable development and deliberate on what young people want from this review process and beyond. The youth’s vision for the future of their islands is a self-sustaining, climate resilient, peaceful, healthy, inclusive, democratic and transparent society where all young people are empowered as equal partners in global efforts for sustainable development.

This youth review process was meant to actively contribute to the Third International Conference on SIDS. For this purpose, UNESCO has partnered with the Government of Samoa and other United Nations agencies to support youth participation at this SIDS Conference held in Apia, on 1-4 September 2014. Various youth events were organized at that occasion, including a youth forum, led by the government of Samoa, as well as a side event that promotes career prospects of young people in the sciences as a means of ensuring the sustainable development in SIDS, led by UNESCO and the government of the Seychelles.

The SIDS Programme of Action recognizes the integral role of youth in sustainable development and the need to further ensure their participation in programmes and activities related to the sustainable development of SIDS. UNESCO through its on-going programmes supports a range of activities for youth in SIDS such as developing media skills, improving national education systems, involving young people in protecting their heritage and support for young scientists. 

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