By Sarah Marjorey Kisakye
(Photos Courtesy of World Youth Development Forum)
Around 2,000 youth representatives from more than 100 countries attended the World Youth Development Forum, which was held online and offline in several cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Nanjing.
The three days event from Thursday 21 July 2022 to Saturday 23 July 2022 organized by the All-China Youth Federation and supported by the International Labour Organization, UNESCO, UNDP, UNFPA, UNCCD, the United Nations System in China and the World Economic Forum. Hosted by Tsinghua University, China Youth College for Political Science, Chinese Youth daily, China youth Development Foundation, CYIC and China youth entrepreneurship and employment foundation, Co-organized by the Institute of Contemporary World and China, China Youth New Media Association, Beijing Young People’s Federation, and Union of Foreign Affairs Universities.
The youthdiscussed the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, calling for more inclusive efforts in the areas of”Employment and Entrepreneurship,” “Climate Change and Green Development” , “Digital Economy” , “Inclusive and Equitable Quality Education.”
Under the theme “For a Shared Future: Promoting Sustainable Development with Youth and for Youth” , the International Youth Priority Development Initiative was launched and preparations made for releasing the Global Action Plan on Youth development.
The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) announced by the UN 2030 Agenda have long been an important direction for the world’s youth to work together for a better future. This forum sets the stage for the world’s youth, and more voices of youth are heard by the world.
A video message by UN Secretary-General António Guterres, called upon young people to play an active role in all aspects of political, economic and social life.
The UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Youth, Jayatma Wickramanayake, noted in a keynote speech via video, that the United Nations youth strategy, “Youth 2030,” works to ensure that every young person is fully included in the realization of the 2030 Agenda.
In congratulatory letter, President Xi Jinping urged young people to represent hope and create a brighter tomorrow, through promoting humanity and facilitating the implementation of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Xi also noted that the World Youth Development Forum is committed to letting the world hear the voice and demonstration of youth globally through promotion of youth responsibility, development and unity that transcends barriers and differences, to build a global bridge for youth to communicate and learn from each other.
At the forum, He Junke, first secretary of the CYL Secretariat, called for more attention to the voice of youth and firmly believing in the power of youth. All countries should give priority to promoting youth development. Young people from all over the world should strengthen exchanges and cooperation and contribute their youth to building a community with a shared future for mankind.
Various key note speakers such as;; Gabriela Ramos, the Assistant Director-General for Social and Human Sciences of UNESCO, , Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, and Chang Qide, UN Resident Coordinator in China and. President Bazoum of Niger who delivered a video message at the forum, re echoed Youth development as vital to global development, calling for youth participation as equal partners and stakeholders in policy development and implementation.