Youth participation central for development - Deputy Minister
'We must consider the youths as assets in the development processes
worldwide. Partnerships with youth will be key to successful
implementation of beyond-2015 global agenda," Youth Affairs and Skills
Development Deputy Minister Duminda Dissanayake said at the 'Enabling
Youth participation in bridging Rio+20 outcome Beyond 2015' at Rio+20 UN
Conference on Sustainable Development at Rio Centro, Rio de Janeiro,
"Giving voices, opportunities and leadership to youth should be the
guiding principles for developing the beyond-2015 agenda. The focus
needs to be on the most marginalized young women and young men in urban
and rural areas that are often left out of the development discussions.
"The event was organized by Sri Lankan National Youth Council in
collaboration with the Environment Ministry and the Youth Affairs and
Skills Development Ministry, Government of Sri Lanka," Deputy Minister
The panel 'Enabling Youth participation in bridging Rio+20 outcome
Beyond 2015' was also aimed at mobilization and empowerment on UNCSD/Rio+20
and beyond process as the Major Group for Children and Youth (MGCY).
It was directed at to create a platform for youth participation and
bridge the gap between the global north and the global south youth.
Over 200 participants from youth-led civil society participants,
NGOs, private, government and UN organizations representatives attended
the event to create a meaningful session for strengthening youth
participation in developing the beyond 2015 agenda. Youth leadership is
central to developing a youth centered preparatory process and ensuring
youth perspective to the development of beyond-2015 agenda.
Participants concluded that youth partnership as central force for
the implementation of the beyond-2105 agenda.
"The government of Sri Lanka has encouraged youth participation in
decision making matters by establishing a youth Parliament and
Federation of Youth Clubs which have over one million youth members at
grassroot level. The Emerging Young Leader Award (EYLA) and Top 20 award
brought young leaders representing diverse sectors to national and
international level. NYSC also introduced a national sport festival and
reality show, Sihinaya (Dream) for disable young people," the deputy