The United Nations Secretary-General and the Executive Director of the United Nations Population Funds (UNFPA), Mr. Ban Ki-moon and Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin respectively on Friday called on government leaders to invest greatly in the well over 1.8 billion youth around the world.
In his message for the World Population Day, Mr. Ban Ki-moon said that action on the investment in the youth was urgently needed, stressing that too many young people were denied a right to a quality education, a decent job, and participation in the political life of their societies.
While expressing particular concern about adolescent girls who may face discrimination, sexual violence, early marriage and unwanted pregnancies, the UN chief noted that the solution lied in investment in health, education, training and employment for young people as they undergo the critical transition to adulthood.
His words: “I call on all with influence to prioritize youth in development plans, strengthen partnerships with youth-led organizations, and involve young people in all decisions that affect them. By empowering today’s youth, we will lay the groundwork for a more sustainable future for generations to come.”
Young people are also speaking out for themselves, he said, noting that more than 1,000 youth organizations endorsed a Global Youth Call to recommend youth-focused goals and targets in the sustainable development agenda that will start after 2015, the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
In his message, Executive Director of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), Babatunde Osotimehin, said: “We know that healthy, educated, productive and fully engaged young people can help break the cycle of intergenerational poverty and are more resilient in the face of individual and societal challenges.”Go back to news home