Ever since I took up this exciting yet challenging job as the UN Secretary General’s Envoy on Youth 2 years ago, I’ve been on a continuous learning process on what it means to be a part of the largest generation in the world, and what it takes to bring to the spotlight the needs, rights & struggles of young ppl everywhere.
Through my work, I had the opportunity to meet some of the world’s most inspiring young change-makers in places that the world often overlooks: from refugee camps in Cox’s Bazaar to a coding camp in the Gaza strip, I met young people confronting their lived realities and bringing hope to their communities.
If one asks me whats the most important thing I have learned so far- that would be the immense amount of resilience and positive disruption that young people embody, even in the most challenging circumstances.
Many young people I have met, from Greta Thunberg leading a massive mobilization of young people for Climate Action to Oluwaseun Ayodeji fighting Gender-Based Violence through technology young people are not waiting for invitations. They are taking action and calling for policymakers to do more, to do better.
Today, I look back at the small steps we have achieved at the United Nations in the past two years: including the launch of the #Youth2030: UN Youth Strategy, to our UN Agencies creating new platforms, to UN country offices establishing new country initiatives, to renewed commitments from governments, to new resolutions, to increased partnerships and many more.
I feel humbled by those steps taken forward in the right direction, but compared to the massive commitment and action from young people, I know that the UN can and should do more.
Every day I am thankful to be doing my job. It is been a privilege and I will do my best in the coming months and years to ensure that every young person everywhere in the world can realize their full potential.
Here’s to working with and for young people!