12th August is upon us! And it is our day! But wait, what do I mean? You ask.
20yrs ago, UN General Assembly designated this day as the International Youth Day back in 1999. It is an annual celebration of the role of young adults, both women and men as essential drivers of change, and as an opportunity to raise awareness of challenges and problems youths are facing in the world today. International Youth Day encourages youth around the world to organize activities and raise awareness about the situation of youth in their own country.
This year’s commemoration will facilitate a dialogue on Transforming Education which is in line with the Millennium Goal 4 of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.” – Inclusive, relevant and accessible education is crucial which will lead to an effective outcome. Obviously, with the fit purpose content of school curriculum, not only will it put you a step ahead in the 4th industrial revolution, but also for the opportunities and challenges that are expeditiously changing milieu.
This year we will focus on how our Government, youths and youth-led organizations are transforming the education narrative in line with SDGs which call for action all around the world – whether you’re poor, rich and middle-income to promote prosperity while protecting our planet at the same time. Some of the youth-led organizations in Kenya such as The Youth Congress , International Youth Foundation and Youth Alive! Kenya have been in the fore-front line transforming education via lobbying and advocacy, partnerships with educational institutions and development of complementary training programs.
Making education relevant is very crucial. I feel that, Sex Education is a key part of everyday society that Kenyan youth is rather clueless. Sexual Education ought to be a featured discussion this time, where youths can be equipped with the proper information they need to navigate the maze that sexual health matter has become. Much to my delight, youths are active champions of inclusive and accessible education a less known fact.
In 2013, the Kenyan government signed a declaration in which it committed to scaling up comprehensive rights-based sexuality education beginning in primary school. Comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) is necessary to ensure healthy sexual and reproductive lives for the youths. It is meant to foster knowledge, attitudes, values and skills to enable them develop positive views of their sexuality.
According to a global report by the World Bank on the teens fertility rates, countries such as Switzerland, the Netherlands and Denmark are among the top 10 with the lowest rates.
Oh! Well, Kenya is at number 36 from behind out of the 194 countries on the list.
As that maybe, do Kenyan youths feel, no! As a Kenyan youth;
Do I feel that I have the skills #Youth2030 need to make it in the 21st century?
How can we promote lifelong learning opportunities that are relevant for every youth?
How can we (youth) contribute in making education more accessible, equitable and inclusive for all? These are some of the dialogues we need to be having.
I can’t afford to miss this! And so can you! Join @unodcyouth online for more deliberate conversations.