Designated by the United Nations as an awareness day, International Youth Day (IYD) holds the purpose to draw attention to a given set of cultural and legal issues surrounding youth. The first IYD was observed on August 12, 2000.
According to UN, International Youth Day gives an opportunity to celebrate and mainstream young people's voices, actions and initiatives, as well as their meaningful, universal and equitable engagement.
This year's theme for IYD is "Youth Engagement for Global Action". It seeks to highlight the ways in which the engagement of young people at the local, national and global levels is enriching national and multilateral institutions and processes, as well as draw lessons on how their representation and engagement in formal institutional politics can be significantly enhanced.
According to UN, enabling the engagement of youth in formal political mechanisms does increase the fairness of political processes by reducing democratic deficits, contributes to better and more sustainable policies, and also has symbolic importance that can further contribute to restore trust in public institutions, especially among youth. Moreover, the vast majority of challenges humanity currently faces, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change require concerted global action and the meaningful engagement and participation of young people to be addressed effectively.
Here's how IYD seeks to put the spotlight on youth engagement in 2020:
Engagement at the local/community level;
Engagement at the national level (formulation of laws, policies, and their implementation); and,
Engagement at the global level.
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