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There is no arguing the fact that the youth are the most essential group in population classification. Their role in the political, economic and social well-being of any nation cannot be under-estimated.

Presently, the 1.8 billion young people in the world today is the largest youth population in history and about 90% of youth live in developing countries. One might be poised to ask: are youth skills under-utilized in most countries of the world? Youth participation is vital to global stability, economic growth and development, today and in the future. Nigeria is an example of a developing country with large youth population. Thus, there is great need to make the youth useful towards the nation’s growth and development.

World Youth Skills Day

In a bid to address the challenge of non-youth participation, the United Nations General Assembly on 18 December, 2014 adopted by consensus, a resolution, spearheaded by Sri Lanka, declaring 15th July as the World Youth Skills Day (WYSD). With the assistance of the G77 and China, Sri Lanka initiated this resolution in order to highlight at a global level, the importance of youth skills development. The goal is to achieve better socio-economic conditions for today’s youth, including as a means of addressing the challenges of unemployment and under employment.

The UN-designated July 15 seeks to create greater awareness and discuss the vitality of technical, vocational education, and training, inclusive of developing other skills relevant to local and global economies. The major objective of the World Youth Skills Day is to help contribute to reducing unemployment and underemployment of the youth all over the world. Young people are almost three times more likely to be unemployed than adults and are constantly confronted with the challenge of greater labour market inequalities. Creating advocacy for skills as an important factor to improve young people’s transitions to decent work, and to highlight the crucial role of skilled youth in addressing today’s most challenging global issues is very important. Attention will be drawn to the critical need for marketable skills through highlight of youth skills development.

With the theme Learning to learn for life and work, this year’s WYSD promises to be eventful. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and UNEVOC will join the global celebrations and raise awareness about the importance of youth skills development. Emphasis for this year’s celebration will be placed on the importance of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in providing youth with the opportunities to develop their competencies and accelerate their transition to work.

Part of programmes for this year’s celebration include an exhibit which will be held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York entitled Inspiring youth and improving perception for skills. The event will hold from 9-18 July 2019 at the Vienna Café Corridor in the UN Headquarters, organized by WorldSkills and UNESCO, in partnership with the Permanent Missions of Sri Lanka and Portugal.

A panel discussion on this year’s theme will also be held at the UN Headquarters on July 15. It is important to note that the discussion will bring together the voices of youth, Member States, the UN system, private sector, civil society, academia and several organizations.


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This article was first published on 15th July 2019


I am a Lion, I love to hit heights that seem impossible so I can motivate others and prove doubters wrong. For me, impossible is nothing. I'm open to learning and I love to read, travel and meet new faces.

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