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“I would like to assure our member states and partners that IGAD will ensure that the Policy is enriched, finalized and adopted by our ministers in charge of education in the near future.” Madam Fathia Alwan , IGAD Director for Health and Social Development Division.

November 15, 2021 (DJIBOUTI, Djibouti): The Regional Consultative Forum on the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Youth Policy, today, opened in Djibouti.

On the opening ceremony of the IGAD Regional Consultative Forum on youth Policy, on behalf of the IGAD executive secretary Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, Director for Health and Social Development Division, Mme. Fathia Alwan disclosed that the speedy adoption and implementation of the IGAD Youth Policy will complement similar efforts in the realization of the Djibouti Declaration on Education; the Kampala Declaration on Livelihoods, Jobs and Sustainability and the new Djibouti Declaration on Labor and Employment.

“The key priority areas identified in the Policy will have significant contribution to the attainment of the Sustainable Development, Agenda 2063 of the African Union and the Five-Year Strategy of IGAD”, the director said.

“It will also reinforce the IGAD Regional Migration Policy Framework and the IGAD Protocol on Free Movement of Persons, all of which give special attention to issues pertaining to youth, social protection and development.” She added.

Madam Fathia reminds that The IGAD response to Covid-19 also gives priority to children and youth, especially among migrants, refugees and displaced people.

Mr. David Momanyi, Executive Director Horn of Africa Youth Network , Dr. Kijala Shako, Director of Advocacy, Campaigns, Communication and Media (ACCM) East and Southern Africa Region, Save the Children remarks and guest of Honor from Government of Djibouti attended the opening ceremony.

It should be noted that the IGAD region has one of the youngest populations in the world with nearly half of them aged below 15 years due to a historically high and constant fertility rate. The IGAD region youth population accounts for 60 to 70 per cent of the population. The youth faces formidable challenges such as unemployment, inequality, poverty, and exclusion. All these have their roots in conflict, poor governance, corruption and climate change and migrate out in search of opportunities. They are also lured by extremists and join forces of destruction, which continue to destabilize the region.

Participants to the Forum are drawn from youth networks representatives from the IGAD member countries, the Youth Inter-Agency Working Group (IAWG), development and strategic partners to ensure support in development, implementation and monitoring of the Youth Policy.

IGAD in collaboration with Save the Children International and Horn of Africa Youth Network (HoAYN) are working to develop the IGAD Youth Policy.

  • The aim of the Regional Consultative Forum is to validate an IGAD Youth Policy to ensure provision of policy, strategic direction on youth concerns and offer guidance on holistically addressing the concerns within the region.
  • The Regional Consultative Forum is part of the policy development roadmap to ensure meaningful participation and engagement of stakeholders to further inform, collect views, review and enrich the existing revised draft IGAD Youth Policy. The Policy is geared towards providing strategic direction in addressing youth concerns in a holistic manner and strengthening IGAD’s support for and engagement with youth.
  • The two-day forum is also expected to end with a fine-tuned IGAD Youth Policy to be submitted to a Ministerial level endorsement, a Terms of Reference for an IGAD Committee of Ministers in charge of Youth Affairs, and the establishment of a Committee of Experts to steer progress in implementation.

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