Every year, International Youth Day is celebrated on August 12 to mark the contribution of today’s youth to the development of society. The significance of this day is also to raise voices against the injustice faced by the youth worldwide as the young people aren’t only tomorrow’s leaders, but they are also making huge changes in society right now. This year, we celebrate under the theme “Intergenerational solidarity: creating a world for all ages.”
Fostering intergenerational solidarity between generations is more than ever necessary to ensure an inclusive and sustainable recovery. As we navigate the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is especially important to recognize and address these age-related barriers to “build back better” in a manner that leverages all generations’ strengths and knowledge.
As a Fresh, New and Dynamic Organization, the DNA is committed to creating an enabling environment for all youth to grow, thrive and to let their voices be heard. We are committed to working with youth groups to develop and deliver proactive policies and programs to address these issues and create an equitable, sustainable and continuous path that will develop, empower and restore hope to the youth of our nation. The Objectives of our Youth Empowerment Policy is to connect key areas of our Vision 2040 development strategy with an aim to create equitable, sustainable and viable communities where youth can excel, thrive and participate in the overall transformation of our country and our People.
DNA President Joanne Massiah noted “Given the multiplicity of challenges presently facing the world, as governments seek solutions and craft policy prescriptions, it is imperative that the voices and recommendations of our youth are heard and included at the decision-making tables since it is to them we will pass the baton of leadership.”
The participation of youth in politics, governance, community and national life and social development is a critical component of the DNA’s Vision 2040 for Antigua and Barbuda.
For far too long policies geared towards youth are designed with minimum consultation and contribution from youth themselves. This failed top down approach has limited and stifled the potential of our youth and has led to a cycle of mediocrity in the development of youth in Antigua and Barbuda. The DNA intends to integrate education, sports, culture, the arts, entrepreneurship and industry, coupled with youth participation and the strengthening of our social environments to create a linear path for our youths to achieve success and be globally competitive as we seek to collectively transform our nation.