The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Youth Forum is an annual initiative where young people can contribute to policy discussions at the United Nations through their collective ideas, solutions and innovations. It took place on 7 and 8 April 2021, and this year it marked its 10th anniversary.
The theme was “Sustainable and resilient recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, that promotes the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development: Building an inclusive and effective path for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda in the context of the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development”.
The World YMCA delegation comprised 26 young people from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Finland, Gambia, Germany, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Mexico, Nigeria, Romania, United States, and Uruguay.
One of the YMCA participants, Ana Clara Martí shares a report on how YMCA was involved during the sessions, and the outcomes.
To quote just two members of the YMCA delegate team:
“My key takeaway was that YOUTH need to be at the table making decisions, and not just having a voice. … [A] lot of the Ys are run by older … men who have been with the Y for years. They occasionally have forums that include youth, but I feel it is more symbolic. I think it would be great if the Y started to have younger people on their Boards and have senior leadership teams that support the vision the young staff have for their associations.”
“This was an amazing opportunity, and I was honoured to be given the chance to participate. I have learned much from this conference that will be utilized in the work that I do in [my] YMCA’s … Child and Youth Department.”
- Read the full report (PDF)