(KPL) To reaffirm the commitment to helping young people realize their full potential in life, UNFPA unveils a youth strategy, My Body, My Life, My World! It places their needs, aspirations and ideals at the core of efforts to support achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the agenda of the International Conference on Population and Development – ICPD – by 2030.
The celebration of the International Youth Day took place at Lao Youth Union in Vientiane Capital on 14 August under the theme “Transforming Education”.
“Ensuring adolescents especially young girls like Noi to not drop out of school and when they do efforts to reintegrate them into school or vocational training are strengthened. This will ensure the Lao PDR has a skilled labour force that contributes to the economic growth and prosperity,” said UNFPA’s Representative Mariam A. Khan.
This year, a youth-led celebration of the International Youth Day (IYD) highlights on education and empowerment for young people and by youth themselves, to make education more inclusive and equitable.
In 1999, UN General Assembly designated 12 August as International Youth Day, to celebrate the role of young women and men as essential change makers as well as enhance opportunities to raise awareness on challenges and problems youth are facing.
“When young people are equipped with the right information and preparation, they have the potential to lead the positive change in the world,” said UNFPA’s Executive Director Natalia Kanem.
“Today ‘s generation, young people (under 25 years) take almost 60 % of country ‘s population. There is a saying in Lao Young people are the backbone of the nation therefore, investing in them especially in key areas like education, health, labour, protection and participation equal to investing in social, economy and development of the country, said Alounxay Sounalath, Secretary General, Lao Youth Union (LYU)
In 1994, the Lao government made a promise at the International Conference on Population Development (ICPD) to meet the special needs of adolescents and youth, especially young women, for access to education, health, counselling and high-quality reproductive health services. Now that it has been 25 years after tremendous progress was made by the government, with support from many partners. This promise was kept for some, but not for all.
The event also revealed the winners of a drawing contest under the same topic transforming education, a youth-led panel discussion on sexual reproductive health, education and employment to draw attention from policy makers and enhance investment possibilities.
At the end of event, joined by young people, international communities and government officials, they jointly sign on the banner to reaffirm the commitment to ICPD agenda.
Source: Lao News Agency