International Conference of NGOs at UNESCO: The IYCW Calls for Empowering Programs for the Youth

The IYCW took part in the 2022 International Conference of NGOs at UNESCO Headquarters (Room II) & online, which was held in Paris from 14-16 December 2022 with the general theme, “Breaking barriers – What role for civil society organizations towards a sustainable future.”

Through this conference the NGOs in official partnership with UNESCO built their program and route map for 2023-2024 and brought to UNESCO their propositions, demands, issues and relevant topics about youth, education, peace, culture, patrimony and technology among other subjects.

The conference discussed about the main efforts and reminded the challenges to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals – SDGs, as well as the role of the NGOs, the civil society organizations (CSOs) to achieve these objectives, more particularly the actions to reinforce partnerships in the global movement for the transformation of education in this rapidly-changing and challenging world.

Ms. Leizyl Salem (IYCW international treasurer) and Mr. Arlindo de Oliveira (International Cardijn Association) were representing the IYCW movement in the plenary sessions of the conference. They brought to the conference some of the highlights of the international plan of action developed at the XV IYCW international council and the program of the movement as a contribution to this relevant network.


According to Ms. Leizyl Salem, “as an international organization focusing on educating young people, especially young men and women workers, we would like to highlight the high unemployment rate, the increase of informal work, as well as the new types of work for youth that increase inequalities due to the unequal access to internet and electricity in a digitalized world. A lot of these young people are working students who are fighting for dignified jobs. In this sense, the program of the UNESCO Liaison Committee for the NGOs must also pay attention to the accessibility of youth to social protection, to their right to quality education, apprenticeship programs, as well as transformative and permanent education programs (life-long learning).”

In connection with the general theme of the conference, Leizyl Salem highlighted the importance of working together, of worldwide solidarity and of the voice and actions of youth organizations. She emphasized that “We are all globally interconnected. Consequently, solutions that are only at grassroots level are important but limited. Global solidarity and common solutions are, therefore, necessary.  We would also like to highlight and endorse the position paper for youth and its follow-up in the next years, and specifically insist on the importance of creating structures and network platforms to motivate and engage young people, particularly young women, to enhance their presence in all spaces so they can share their own thoughts and creative ideas and make their own contribution to the society.”



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