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Youth Forum: young voices express the future they want

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Youth ForumHa Noi, 13 November - As part of a series of policy advocacy events and dialogues focused on discussing issues relating to young people and the post 2015 development agenda, the UN in Viet Nam, together with the Youth Union, organized a youth forum on 13 November.

The aim of the event was to help young people get their voices heard when planning for the implementation of the National Youth Development Strategy 2011-2020.

Viet Nam youth widely represented
The National Youth Forum gathered together about 100 youth representatives from across Viet Nam, representing diverse groups of young people, such as youngsters from high schools, universities, industrial zones, rural areas, and ethnic minorities, youth in the armed forces and youth union officials from Hanoi and Hai Phong, as well as Ben Tre, Ninh Thuan, Hai Duong, Hoa Binh and Phu Tho provinces. Besides young people, the forum was also attended by leaders and representatives from the concerned line ministries, the Youth Union and several UN agencies.

How to make youth policies work
The Forum featured interactive discussions on how young people can make a meaningful contribution to the implementation of youth policies, as well as what they see as important development issues for Viet Nam when the MDGs expire in 2015.

Young people can make a difference
During the Forum, the discussions focused on four themes: health, education, employment and youth perspectives in multi-sectoral coordination of youth affairs. Young participants called for better access to health, education and employment, and stressed the need for better quality and equality of the services. Besides these messages to leaders, there was also focus on the role of young people themselves as change agents. With adequate life skills and supporting attitudes, young people feel they can be the champions of their own lives.

What’s next?
The recommendations made by the youth participants will be used on 28 November when the Ministry of Home Affairs will organize a high-level “National conference on a multi-sectoral response to the implementation of Vietnamese Youth Development Strategy 2011-2020”.

At the end of the day, Ms. Mandeep K. O'Brien, UNFPA Representative a.i. in Viet Nam, on behalf of the UN in Viet Nam, voiced that: “Thinking forward, we will share the voices of young people to high-level leaders at the 28 November conference. But I would also like to think beyond that, with hopes that this dialogue will keep ongoing, perhaps in the form of an institutionalized mechanism to have young people heard in the matters that concern them.”

Learn more?

Read through this testimony of young migrant workers and watch the videos below.

There is also a video showing young people's opinion on the future they want recorded that same day.

Or watch the video showing children's views, recorded on 19 January 2013.



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Mr. President of the General Assembly,
Distinguished Heads of State and Government,
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