By Morris Chris Ongom
Lira—12, August 2021: GLOFORD Uganda is proposing a youth led dialogue to commemorate the International Youth Day. The organization headquartered at Lira City, Uganda could hold virtually and coordinate this event. Are you going to be part as a young person? Will the media profile youth achievements and the widening gap of development and provide space for youth voices?
Global Agenda, Local Action
In 1999, General Assembly resolution 54/120 endorsed the recommendation made by the World Conference of Ministers of Youth (Lisbon, 8-12 August 1998) that 12 August be declared International Youth Day. Such a day provides an opportunity to celebrate young peoples’ views and initiatives on a global scale.
Today, young people hold a crucial role working towards implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and related frameworks.
Recent global priorities have centered on fighting the impacts of climate change, unemployment, poverty, gender inequality, conflict, and migration among others. The international community has born witness to young people’s unprecedented mobilization around the world, which has shown the massive power they possess to hold decision-makers accountable.
The Decade of Action announced by the Secretary General in September 2019 requires people centered action, inclusive of youth to generate an unstoppable movement pushing for such required transformations.
Through youth education, engagement, innovation and entrepreneurial solutions, this year’s International Youth Day aims to provide a platform for young people to take part in a series of events and actions that can improve global food systems.
The year’s international youth day has been envisioned to highlight the urgency of transforming food systems, particularly in the wake of a global pandemic. In this context, this year’s International Youth Day will center on the theme Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health.
We will not achieve the success of such a global effort without the meaningful participation of young people. Consumption patterns that impact one’s personal health and that of the planet are instilled early in life. Today, global agriculture is facing major challenges, including feeding a growing world population, the need to address rural poverty, and the management of ecosystem goods and services considering global environmental changes, evident through climate change.
Food systems include not only the basic elements of how we get food from farms to the table, but also all the processes and infrastructure involved in feeding a population, and the negative externalities that can be generated during the process, such as air and ocean pollution as well as desertification.
Population health is also key in addressing food systems challenges, especially as nutrition-related chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and some forms of cancer are major contributors to the global burden of disease.
We need to collectively act now more than ever on issues affecting young people locally.
The writer is the Chief Executive Officer, GLOFORD Uganda and the President Lira City Development Forum.