Plan With Youth and celebrate International Youth Day

Youth around the world are making a difference and each year on August 12 we recognize their contribution on International Youth Day! This year’s theme is “Youth Migration: Moving Development Forward”.

Issues of global migration are affected by the lack of employment and employability of many of the young migrants forced to leave their homes and families to seek work. Around the world the demand for education has risen, making youth today the best equipped generation in history in terms of education levels. Paradoxically this is also the generation most affected by unemployment and underemployment, as the supply of skills now exceeds the demand in many areas.

What are the competencies and skills young people need, and that education should provide, for a 21st century world that is on the move?

IIEP staff celebrate the outcome report of the Policy Forum 2012 with Forest Whitaker the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Peace and Reconciliation. Stay tuned for our interview with him later this month!
©UNESCO/E. Urbano

In our forthcoming youth strategy, IIEP will build on evidence from our 2012 Policy Forum “Engaging youth in planning education for social transformation”. The strategy will look at some of the issues affecting youth in their transition from education to the world of work.

The evidence from the Policy Forum highlighted that young people remain disenfranchised politically, socially, and economically during the transitional stage between childhood and adulthood. To engage the positive energy of youth activism, education (both formal and non-formal) must provide a pathway to active global citizenship, promote values that contribute to peacebuilding, ensure that young people feel empowered within their communities , and overcome the skills mismatch between education and the world of work.

Moreover, our recent analysis of national education and youth policies and plans revealed there is a clear disconnect between the content of the policies and plans reviewed and the needs of youth. Therefore IIEP will support youth and ministries around the world to develop national education plans, policies and programmes that reflect youth issues and needs. We will support ministries and youth organizations to ensure that young people participate as central actors in the educational planning process.

You can read how the Policy Forum website and the Plan with Youth Facebook page have created an enabling environment for youth and ministers to interact more effectively together.  We have also begun a mapping of youth engagement in educational planning, following up on the on-going activities and commitments made by participants of the Policy Forum in the Agenda for Action. You can contribute your activities to this mapping by posting on our discussion forum.

If you want to learn more about International Youth Day 2013, see the UNESCO Director-General’s speech and read more about UNESCO’s celebration of International Youth Day. You can also see what the United Nations is doing.