The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Youth Forum took place from 25 to 27 April 2023 in a hybrid format.
The Forum provided a platform for young people to engage in a dialogue with Member States and other actors to voice their views, concerns and galvanize actions on how to transform the world into a fairer, greener and more sustainable place guided by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Youth Forum addressed the theme of ECOSOC and the 2023 UN High-level Political Forum on sustainable development (HLPF) on “Accelerating the recovery from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at levels”. It also reviewed progress in the areas of clean water and sanitation (SDG 6), affordable and clean energy (SDG 7), industry, innovation and infrastructure (SDG 9), sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11), and partnerships for the goals (SDG17).
The 2023 ECOSOC Youth Forum was convened by the President of ECOSOC and co-organized by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), and the Office of the Secretary General’s Envoy on Youth, in collaboration with the United Nations Inter Agency Network on Youth Development (IANYD), and co-convened by the Major Group for Children and Youth (MGCY) and the International Coordination Meeting of Youth Organizations (ICMYO), with technical inputs from youth-led and youth-focused organizations relevant to the theme of the forum.
Youth leaders from around the world had the opportunity to engage with government representatives, youth delegates, policymakers and other relevant stakeholders in civil society and the private sector.
The AYC together with United Nations Office of the Special Adviser on Africa (UN-OSAA), United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) jointly co-organised the Africa Regional Break out session on the 26th of April 2023.
The 2023 ECOSOC Youth Forum Africa Regional Breakout Session aims to provide young leaders with an
opportunity to engage on how they can concretely contribute to and benefit from an inclusive
implementation of the AfCFTA and the achievement of the SDGs. The session sought to
propose practical solutions to addressing the high youth unemployment rate in Africa by promoting
innovations and youth entrepreneurship, intra-Africa labour mobility and trade. It also aims to
influence policy formulation at the United Nations High-level Political Forum on Sustainable
The Meeting Report can be assessed HERE
Download the meeting concept note HERE
Watch the recorded Video HERE
Kenya youth in the climate change space organised a round table to discuss the Climate Change Amendments Bill, 2023. The Government of Kenya issued a call for comments, proposals and recommendation from the public and interest groups for seeking to amendments the Climate Change Act of 2016 a process that is currently ongoing. The roundtable was organized by Youth Senate Kenya (YSK) the downstream implementing partner for African Youth Commission (AYC) within the African Activists for climate Justice (AACJ) Project. The roundtable took place on 4th May 2023 at the Royal Tulips Canaan Hotel, Nairobi Kenya. The target participants were drawn from different set of youth with the common interest of climate change, the youth included those who have founded organisations, those working in the Carbon market (Targeted to give guidance on the proposed amendments on Carbon Markets section).
Key issues discussed included the lack of youth centric clauses that took care of their interests if the youth except for the proposal to include the youth in the climate change council, an idea that was lauded but the selection criteria of arriving at the youth with capacity and was missing making it an issue of interest to the meeting. Another issue that came out withing the proposals in fronted to include carbon markets, of interest to the meeting was the lack of youth specific youth interests clearly indicating how they areto be taken care of considering that they are a big constituent of the Kenyan engaged in the climate response work. Another key topic discussed was the clear distinction between the roles of the community, county and national governments not showing clearly how the interests of the communities would be taken care of, one major decision that stood out was the proposals by the Climate Change Amendment Bill of 2023 on the deletion of the schedule involving public participation, this was opposed too by the youth noting that public participation is clearly enshrined in the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
On the way forward the meeting agreed to form a small team to firm up the recommendation from the meeting in close consultation with the legal team while receiving any other additional views from other youth who did not make it for the meeting and develop a memorandum which will be presented to the ministry in a language and format that is acceptable to the government. Colleagues also agreed to continue with them engagement by forming a WhatsApp group to continue with the momentum created within the meeting.
The meeting concluded with the appreciation to Youth Senate Kenya, AYC and the entire African Activists for Climate Justice colleagues for the good work that they are doing to empower youth Across the continent.
Photos Link can be accessed HERE