Welcome to the inaugural Global Forum for Children and Youth.
You have come together to make the world a better place.
To build on the great work of UNICEF and so many others to improve the lives of children and young people.
To reignite hope.
Now is the time.
Conflicts, climate change, hunger, inequalities, and the devastation of COVID-19 are taking their toll.
Child poverty has shot back up.
Millions of young people are out-of-school.
Children are trapped by humanitarian emergencies.
And nearly half of them — one billion girls and boys — are highly vulnerable to climate and environmental shocks.
My friends, there is a clear pathway to reset our world for children and young people.
Solidarity and action.
Working together across countries — and across ages — to design and deliver solutions that can build a better future for every child.
This forum is a critical first step.
But when it ends, I urge you to carry your ideas — and your leadership — forward.
Be a voice for the world’s children and youth in the halls of power and the boardrooms of business.
Stand up for them.
And to the young people here today —
Keep calling for change.
Keep supporting one another.
Keep leading and offering solutions.
Because building a better tomorrow starts with building a better today.