Strengthening young people's political skills in Tajikistan

With more than 60 per cent of the population aged under 30, Tajikistan is one of the world’s youngest countries. Yet youth participation, both political and social, is low and young people’s opinion undervalued. This is why UNDEF funds a project in Tajikistan to encourage young people to participate in political debates on youth policy issues. The initiative works to strengthen the youth sections of all eight registered national political parties, increase young people's understanding of democratic values and principles as a fundamental basis for participating in the next national elections, and develop comprehensive strategies and approaches towards youth policy. A key mechanism is the creation of a Youth Debate Centre, as well as a monitoring body to evaluate the effectiveness and application of youth policy recommendations. This is the second youth project funded by UNDEF in Tajikistan. Implemented by the Youth of the 21st Century, a local NGO, the project recently held a training course on democratic debating skills for young people in Dushanbe.