Day 1 Wrap Up: How to make Youth-SWAP more actionable

Hello everyone,

Day One of the IANYD conference proved to be a long and informative one. Learning more about the Youth-SWAP, and how the United Nations wants to move forward with making sure it is implemented is quite an intense discussion.

I spent a large part of the day with one of AIESEC’s New York based representatives Eliane, and she helped bring me up to speed with the youth initiative and what AIESEC’s role could possibly be.

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There was a lot of emphasis on what the role of youth is with the UN. The Director of the United Nations Population Fund, Babatunde Osotimehin described it nicely by saying it is now the time that the UN is talking with and not talking to Youth.

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In the afternoon we split into working groups to come up with recommendations for the UN on how to take action on their commitments. I joined the working group on employment and entrepreneurship, because I thought AIESEC had a lot to contribute in that discussion.

The conversations with the people at the table were great, but for some reason they left me wanting to hear more- not necessarily more around SWAP, but more around action. As AIESECers, we are very used to having one year to make an impact; we have to move quickly, and start implementing right away or we risk doing nothing with the one year term we have. Sometimes this leads us to have the “legacy syndrome”, where we do anything to leave our mark, sometimes reinventing the wheel when we don’t have to. But overall, it teaches us that we must move fast to make an impact.

Youth-SWAP was released in 2012, and a year and a half later, it seems it is still not clear on the actions it wants it’s member states to take. If the UN really wants to make an impact in the area of Youth, which I feel it genuinely does, it needs to figure out how to work more swiftly and smart to start taking actions that improve the lives of young people now.

I will be talking a lot more with some of the other youth organisations, but also Ahmad Alhendawi, the UN Secretary General’s Envoy on Youth, whom is so passionate around making sure that the Action plan on Youth works! I hope that we can not only identify ways that we can make sure the commitments for employment and entrepreneurship are met, but also the role that AIESEC can play in these plans.

My question to you, and I hope you participate in this discussion:
If the overall goal of the employment and entrepreneurship focus area is to ensure greater opportunities for youth to secure decent work and income, what do you think the first actions need to be? And how can the UN and Youth organisations make this happen?

2 replies
  1. Chuck Chaoke
    Chuck Chaoke says:

    I think UN and Youth organisations can start investing on youth for them to be more capable of being employed for a decent work. Though secondary and territory institutions provide these knowledge and platform, the practicability are often doubted. Further, how about those youth without access to education? Who can UN and Youth organisations help them to open more doors?

    Reply
  2. Shabana Mansoory
    Shabana Mansoory says:

    First of all thank you for all your sharing, to specifically answer to your question i think first action can is to focus on the Key challenges which employment and entrepreneurship face, then solution!!!
    According to my perspective the challenge is that Education and training do not match the skills required by employers and also Lack of job opportunities, to solve these we should improve training and vocational education in the classrooms and workplace and to foster youth entrepreneurship, we should establish entrepreneurship training and providing easier access to financial services including loans,savings and other youth‐friendly financial products.And for youth employment and entrepreneurship there should also be done the promotion of greater opportunities for youth to secure decent work and thus contribute to poverty reduction and social inclusion over the life‐cycle.

    Thank you,
    Shabana Mansoory (Ms.)
    AIESEC Afghanistan

    Reply

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