Launch of the "ICPD +20- Investing in Young People"Campaign
United Nations, Praia, 22 July 2014 There are currently 1.8 billion people in the world aged between 10 and 24 years old, making this the biggest population of young people (15-24 years old) and adolescents (10-19 years old) in history. In 1994, the United Nations' International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) brought together 179 countries in Cairo. It was the first meeting in which all aspects of human life were addressed in a comprehensive way. The result of the meeting was a Programme of Action for the next 20 years, which recognized that every person counts. At the time, the governments agreed that every human being has the right to a healthy and productive life, without discrimination, and that the promotion of human rights is fundamental for economic growth and sustainable development.
ICPD beyond 2014 will evaluate and review the Cairo Programme of Action, point the way to new challenges and define a new set of recommendations.
Cape Verde took part in the initiative through the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and is implementing a set of activities geared towards this process in the country.
In this context, and within the framework of the commemorative activities for World Population Day, which was celebrated on 11 July with the slogan "Invest in Young People", the launch of the ICPD +20 Campaign (United Nations International Conference on Population and Development, 20 years on) took place today, 22 July. It was also focused on young people.
This theme was proposed taking in to account the campaign on young people which UNFPA launched worldwide with the aim of engaging young people and adolescents themselves so that they can express their needs and aspirations, sharing messages and images on the themes which interest them and broadening their involvement in the debate on the new global development goals.
The launch for the campaign was presided over by the Minister for Youth, Employment and Human Resource Development, Janira Hopffer Almada. During the central ceremony, the Resident Coordinator of the United Nations System in Cape Verde and Representative of UNFPA, Ulrika Richardson, reaffirmed the key role of Cape Verdean young people in the process of sustainable development with social inclusion in her country. "In order to achieve this [sustainable development with social inclusion] we need to secure their rights and invest in their future, offering all young women and men a quality education, employment, decent incomes, social security and access to health services, especially sexual and reproductive health services, in a context of gender equality that is free from any kind of violence or discrimination", Ulrika Richardson emphasized.
The campaign will run from July to December with a number of activities, including debates and awareness-raising campaigns. It follows the Global Youth Call initiative, taken up by 40 countries, which recommends the inclusion of objectives and goals focused on young people in the post-2015 development agenda.
Janira Hopffer Almada pointed out that young people represent the driving force of any nation of the world. In the specific context of Cape Verde, where 70 % of the total population is made up of young people, it is necessary to join forces, coordinate initiatives and work together in order to be able to confront the huge and persistent financial, social and economic challenges. "We have a huge potential force for catapulting Cape Verde onto a new level of development, but at the same time a complex and delicate challenge to do with the expectations and needs of this part of the population, when we consider the low level of resources the country has available to mobilize", the Minister emphasized.
The International ICPD+20 Conference will take place in September at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. It will be a time for evaluating and reviewing the Cairo Programme of Action and for delineating a common commitment to the improvement of every person's life.
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