“My World, My SIDS”: consultation of young people of the Small Island States of the AIMS region
UNESCO in partnership with UNICEF and UNFPA organizes a 6-day workshop inviting young people from Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to contribute their vision for the future of small islands to the 2014 Global SIDS Conference as part of a large regional consultations initiative. The International Conference for SIDS is scheduled to convene during September 2014 in Apia, Samoa.
Over sixty young men and women from the Small Island Developing States of the Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean, and South China Sea (AIMS) region have been selected following a call for applications issued towards youth organizations on April 2013. They will have the opportunity to share their issues, envision the future they want for themselves and for the development of their countries.
They are invited to express a common reflection on the destiny of their countries and to issue concrete suggestions that will serve as the starting point for the drafting of an outcomes document that will be the new plan of action for SIDS during the SIDS World Conference, organized by the UN in September 2014.
Some youth representatives elected by these young people will have the opportunity to represent the voices of SIDS youth during various regional and inter-regional preparatory meetings in the coming months.
This Third SIDS Conference which will be held in 2014, occurs twenty years after the UN State Members have gathered for the first time in Barbados in order to identify new challenges and to meet the specific needs of SIDS.
In 1994, the First SIDS Conference endorsed the Barbados Program of Action (BPOA) as the blueprint for addressing these special challenges. Fourteen key areas were identified covering sustainable environments, energy and communication, tourism and human resource development.
Twenty years later, the United Nations will convene a review and recommitment to development in small islands when the Member States come together in Apia, Samoa. The original Program of Action and the Implementation Strategy developed in Mauritius during the 10 year review will be examined to determine what progress has been made in twenty years, what challenges still exist and key priorities for internationally agreed development goals in the post 2015 era (linking with the outcomes of the Rio +20 Conference held in 2012 ‘the Future We Want’).
While the international community will be celebrating in 2014 the International year for Small Island Developing States, this Third SIDS International Conference will include youth representatives who will voice their opinions regarding the future they want for themselves.