Today (12) is International Youth Day Youth, Sri Lanka’s best hope for peace – UNDP Rep
According to the Sri Lanka National Human Development Report (NHDR 2014), 68.5% of youth surveyed believed in the right to be treated equally and without discrimination, a positive indication that youth see equality as key to social integration and their role in promoting it.
However, young people today face many challenges in education, employment, sexual and reproductive health and more, which seriously undermine their ability to reach their full potential , said UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative Ms. Una McCauley in her International Youth Day message.
Her message : In September of last year, I had the privilege of attending an event in Galle with the then UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, to meet over 100 young Sri Lankans actively engaged in peace-building work.
Skilled young men and women, their approaches to peace building were as varied as their backgrounds but every single one of them unified in their commitment and passion, actively contributing to a peaceful and unified Sri Lanka. These young people were born and lived their early lives during conflict, terror and displacement, yet their involvement in peace building, reconciliation and post-conflict transformation is playing a part in creating a better future for us all.
As the world celebrates International Youth Day this Saturday (12 August), the theme this year : "Youth building Peace" is especially relevant for Sri Lanka.
Just over a month ago, the UN Secretary General, António Guterres appointed one such champion, Sri Lanka's own Jayathma Wickramanayake, his global Envoy for Youth. Among her impressive list of achievements, Jayathma was most recently advocating for conflict prevention at the time of her appointment.
There are many Jayathmas in Sri Lanka, committed young men and women working tirelessly for the betterment of society.
Sri Lanka's youth has always been its greatest, yet most under estimated asset.
Only 8% of schools offer GCE A/L in Science, Arts and Commerce while 20% only offer Arts and Commerce (NHDR 2014). According to the Annual Labour Force Survey of 2015, youth (15-24 years) unemployment rate stands at 20.8%. This is alarming, considering that the overall unemployment rate stands at 4.7%.The National Youth Health Survey 2013 also found that 55% of respondents were not aware of reproductive health services in their region, while suicide is considered one of the leading causes of death among adolescents and youth in Sri Lanka.
There are over 4.4 million young people in Sri Lanka with diverse needs. Young people with disabilities, HIV+ youth, young LGBTI communities, rich and poor, in rural and urban areas.
Investing in each and everyone of these 4.4 million by creating inclusive access to quality education, knowledge and skills is key in ensuring meaningful employment and livelihoods which in turn will empower and enable more youth to join their peers in working towards a more just and equitable society.
But empowerment alone is not enough.
It is our responsibility as leaders to listen to the voices of youth, to ensure they are included in decisions that often affect them in ways that decision-makers seldom imagine.
Harnessing the potential of youth is essential to achieving sustainable peace. Inclusive participation of youth in decision-making processes at all levels of governance is essential to achieving sustainable peace. Applying the resourcefulness, openness and energy of Sri Lanka's multi-cultural youth is essential to achieving sustainable peace.
Youth is indefinitely Sri Lanka's best hope at achieving durable, lasting peace.
This is why, the UN Agencies in Sri Lanka are facilitating several engagements between young people and a multitude of stakeholders, including the government, civil society, private sector and development partners through the UN Peace Building Fund.
This International Youth Day, we celebrate the tremendous contributions young people make to their communities and the world to build peaceful societies.
Let us also not fail to recommit to work with, and for, the youth of Sri Lanka – the most valuable force we have to shape a better future for us all.
Proposed crippling countrywide strike TO SAVE ECONOMY, ASSETS, NATURAL RESOURCES– D.J. RAJAKARUNA
- Doha visa waiver for 80 countries Lankan job market under threat 3223
- AG warns against delaying Audit Bill Phobia on surcharge powers 2555
- Report on mayhem at FTZ President’s Office opts to remain silent 2735
- Market enjoys $ 88M NFIs 2559
- Political controversies laid to rest Stock Market makes gains 2562
- Implementation of sticker proposal on Liquor Delay costs Govt Rs 40B 2724
- CBK secretly invited Norway Only two people in Colombo knew when I first met Prabhakaran – Solheim 2586
- Harmony needed for religious freedom – Minister 3005
- CMC property taxes 3008
- Proposed tax on EPF, ETF ICEU seeks urgent meeting with Minister 3012
- Car plunges into river Two dead, three critically injured 3138
- Arson attack on schoolgirl’s house Minister promises new home 3010
- Australian gender advocate in Lanka Broderick to meet business, public leaders 2970
- Fire at Weligama textile store 2984
- Protest planned on Matale A9 Road Compensation demand for lost property 2974
- Rs 128,250,000 spent on survey Samurdhi union demands reimbursement 3069
- NEC to boost economy – President Shot in the arm for agriculture sector 2966
- Driver who killed 13 in Barcelona rampage Spanish police in manhunt 2948
- NLB, DLB back with Finance Ministry 2945
- Govt. has failed says Sampanthan Complains in letter to UNSG 2958
- New LG Draft Bill in Parliament on 24 August 2946
- Travis Sinniah appointed Navy Chief Holder of highest combat medal 3051
- Solution to ethnic issue New Constitution the only way – Mano 2945
- 18-year sentence sought for Lankan Convicted of human smuggling 2949
- SIS man on the mat Nabbed with gold at BIA 2950
- Mixed reaction to ‘bus priority lane’ 2021
- Why jo remained in CA 2093
- Bribery and corruption pervasive malaise in Sri Lanka 3281
- Schoolboy publisher Notching up half a century in business 2963
- Spirits Nether world inhabitants visiting us 2959
- Sri Lanka Vs India 1st ODI Sri Lanka out to change fortunes 1770
- Never Thought I’ll be SL captain – Tharanga 1819
- Anika clinches fifth tennis crown 1764
- ‘Singer Cup’ U-17 Division II Cricket St. Peter’s win by two wickets 1753
- X Pro Academic U-15 team here 1758
- ‘Singer Cup’ U-17 Division II Cricket St. Sebastian meet Thurstan’s in semis today 1758
- Cook and Anderson pile on agony for West Indies 1747
- All Blacks hit highs in 54-34 win over Wallabies 1750
- Sri Lanka lose opening match 1751
- Seven countries compete 2963
- The day JRJ survived an assassination attempt in Parliament Recollection of a miraculous survival! 1938
- People in a dilemma To feed or not to feed starving animals 1922
- Bid to save jumbos from extinction 1929
- Manhandling a lift operator Is the IGP above the Law? 1942
- Political commentary What’s next? Who’s next? 3834
- Students won’t give up till demands met – Lahiru 1623
- Referendum needed to postpone polls – Deshapriya 1678
- Proposed crippling countrywide strike TO SAVE ECONOMY, ASSETS, NATURAL RESOURCES– D.J. RAJAKARUNA 2825
- No taxes on EPF withdrawals– John Seneviratne 3444
- Zero support for Justice Minister within UNP – Ajith P. Perera 3498
- New programme to uplift SMEs soon 1535
- Govt urges CEB, ‘Obey Orders’ 1541
- Banks and insurance companies should collaborate 1540
- Duty waiver will hit BOP, drain forex – Senior Economist 1700
- Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka resigns 1542
- CBSL to resume talks with PayPal & Stripe 1708
- Pan Asian Power acquires Kotmale Oya Power Two 1524
- HNB records Rs 13.4 B in PBT 1521
- Visits to UK rise amid fall in pound 1526
- Mobitel unveils next tech revolution with ‘X Station’ 1537
- A time of gifts Staying on 1572
- Manuka honey:The superbug killer 2515
- A time of gifts Trying to settle down 2270
- Chithral releases his latest song 1576
- Florals: A Fashion Favourite 1572
- Be a lioness not a lamb 1054
- Places to visit in Kandy 1402
- Dhothalu Oya Sandaraja Forest amidst tea estates 1529
- prelate who promoted Buddhist studies in British era 1534
- Principles underlying planetary combinations Understanding and Interpreting their results 1534
- CAUSE OF DEATH- 2 1522
- How to identify 22nd Derkanadhipati 1517
- Shadow planets transit new Houses 1519
- Cinema of Attraction 1790
- The global and local in Hong Kong cinema 1851
- Pakistani Cinema Had Its Own Way of Looking at Partition Too 1539
- Locarno: Sri Lanka’s Sky Entertainers Presents Lineup at Open Doors Lab 1646
- Fitting Social critique 2109
- Collection of critical essays 1521
- Ven. Olande Anada Thero Encountering Buddhism 1521
- De Lanerolle brothers redefined SL music scene 1515
- Knowledge on the go 893
- Anxiety: the 21st century pandemic 1045
- Prawn farming – a delicious destruction 912
- When you hit rock bottom 936
- Electronic waste – a looming threat 897
- The humble roti revamped 901
- A knockout victory 892
- Sharing a bit of Italian history 908
- Magic pills and cute emojis 905
- A decade of victories 894
- Promising and creepy 896
- A choral treat 889