It was December 2020, and the world had been struggling the past year due to Covid. Isolation, unemployment, and mental health issues were taking a toll on young people, and those disruptions have changed the future of a generation.
Two years later, there is much to celebrate.
The Global Youth Mobilization (GYM) launched that month two years ago, founded as a movement of young people taking action to improve their lives This month, GYM will recognise two years of youth-led global action in events held over four days. Those events include a final impact report and a youth roundtable.
World YMCA is a proud founding member, alongside the Big 6 youth organisations and is supported by the World Health Organization and the United Nations Foundation.
After its first year, GYM had provided funding to 183 Local Solutions projects across 41 countries and funded 74 National Projects across the Big Six in 56 countries. The upcoming events will share what has happened during that time and provide a look at the overall impacts.
Leading up to the main event is the Youth-led Roundtable on 11 February at 14:00 CET, featuring the young people driving GYM.
“The roundtable is a great opportunity for young people to share experiences and make global connections”, said Paleni Amulungu, GYM Digital Communications, Partnerships and Advocacy Coordinator.
The Main/Plenary Event is on 15 February at 14:00 CET and will showcase the impact of youth-led solutions. In addition, it will reflect on the Big Six and wider partnership model, and discuss lessons learned to inform youth financing models globally.
Immediately following that at 15:45 CET on 15 February is the Youth-led Solutions Projects Showcase – Side Event. This event provides a look at diverse and innovative youth-led projects from across GYM’s three core pillars – National Projects, Local Solutions and the Accelerator Programme.
Finally, the GYM Final Impact Report launch will be at the end of the month. Look for more information soon.
YMCA Sierra Leone
One of the featured projects during the final event, the Projects Showcase – Side Event, is a GYM-funded national project by YMCA Sierra Leone. The project – Mobilizing Young People for Covid-19 Response in Kenema – was designed specifically in response to the fourth wave of the virus in Kenema.
Overview: 100 young people led the implementation across 3 YMCA branches: Mid-Term Branch, Njagbwema Branch and Hangha Branch. The project trained peer educators and strengthened their skills and knowledge ofnemergency response. In addition, it increased collaboration between youth groups and community stakeholders in decision-making and undertaking joint initiatives in the fight against Covid.
Outcome: By the end of the project, peer educators had reached around 100 direct beneficiaries, 20 of which were young people who could be deemed as “vulnerable”.
To learn more about this YMCA project and others, make sure to register for the events and visit the GYM site for complete details.