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Youth: Key agents for change

Asongla

The UN has long recognized that young people are a major human resource for development and key agents for social change, economic growth and technological innovation. Youths are usually very energetic and are always willing to go the extra mile if need be to achieve what they believe in and hold on to. They are more optimistic about the future than older generations. Youth are the foundation of any society. Their energies, resourcefulness, character and orientation define the pace of development and security of a society. The stronger the youth of a society, the more developed that society.

However, in many society, certain issues stand as obstruct in the wheel of progress of the youth; thereby making it difficult for them to maximize their relevance in the society. We are living in times of great turmoil, and the impact of that on young people is in unpleasant situation. Despite the increase in education level for most youth, conditions for workplace integration have not necessarily developed in the same direction. The transition from education to the labour market has become more difficult, involving longer jobless periods, higher likelihood of getting only temporary contracts or a job below qualifications, and low pay. This situation leads to delays in starting independent lives and a lack of motivation to start a family or to participate actively in society. In the long run, it results in lower earnings, higher risk of poverty and a loss of social recognition or even dignity. Youth are integral and essential part of a society and a society is incomplete without young blood.
Young people are ambitious and show greater autonomy in their career decisions. They acknowledge changing skill requirements and are eager to pursue higher education, undergo additional training and enroll in skill development programmes. If the skill of this responsive population is positively harnessed, a society can be said to be on the path to progress because there is a definite link between the prosperity of a society and its youth development systems. However various factors are blocking their ambitions and preventing them from adapting effectively to the changing nature of work.

Young people are more optimistic about the future than older generations. Youth are the tools and makers of change if provided with enabling environment for psychological and mental maturity and sound physical wellbeing which offers employment opportunities, participation and security. Young people are extremely socially- engaged. Today’s youth are more concerned with social issues than previous generations. Despite facing much higher unemployment rates, more instability and lower wages than their predecessors, today’s youth are entering adulthood confident that they can build a better future for themselves and for those that follow.
With youth come energy, innovation, and optimism – if there are supportive environments and opportunities. They have always stood center stage in the socio-economic developments of a society. They could be the driving force behind the development and peaceful existence of any society. Young people are in the natural process of learning and inventing, therefore if they are given responsibilities; they will accept the challenge and will be a driving force in making a progressive impact in our society. Youth can make the difference, because they are the backbone of a society and can build a bright future for society based on values and courageous behavior.

 

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