In New York, the third annual ECOSOC Youth Forum concluded yesterday with a Global Youth Call being presented to Member States. Endorsed by more than 1,000 youth and civil society organizations from some 140 countries, the Global Youth Call is an emerging global consensus on concrete proposals for target areas on youth in the Post-2015 Development Agenda. Forty speakers from the floor provided their comments and reflections on the consolidated document.
During the morning session, Doug Court with ITU delivered a presentation on the convergence of ideas, supported by data from the crowdsourcing platform, whereas moderator of the session Prateek Awasthi from UNFPA gave a detailed overview of the Global Youth Call.
The idea of ‘leave no one behind’ set the tone for the discussion, and the youth voice resounded strongly as young people shared their vision of the world they want to see post-2015. An important highlight extracted from the discussion was that the Post-2015 Development Agenda should be looked at holistically, as there can be no isolated goals. Youth participants also voiced the need to see and recognize the linkages between all of the five thematic areas outlined in the Global Youth Call, because these issues all inform one another.
In his closing remarks addressing youth, H.E. Mr. Martin Sajdik, President of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), said: “You exceeded my expectations. If you will be the leaders, you will do a good job, I’m sure.” He also pointed out that recommended action from these two days would be presented during ECOSOC’s high-level segment, and expressed hope that the Youth Forum would become part of the Council’s formal proceedings.
Ahmad Alhendawi, the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, in his concluding remarks stressed that the ECOSOC Youth Forum and the endorsement of the Global Youth Call were a collective accomplishment. He also reminded the participants that next year will mark the 20 year anniversary of the World Programme of Action for Youth, and extended an open invitation to everyone to take part in continuing the discussion and work on advancing youth priorities.