Next Generation Fellows meet UN leaders

Aug 11, 2021

In March and April the Next Generation Fellows met the United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Jayathma Wickramanyake and Assistant Secretary-General Volker Türk to gather their perspectives on how best to capture the attention of world leaders in making the case for future generations. 

They were urged by Mr Turk to engage with ‘unusual suspects’ in order to capture a diversity of opinions and innovative solutions to challenges facing young people and the planet in the coming decades. 

Ms Wickramanyake challenged Fellows to think about

‘What are those institutional changes we need to make this75-year old institution a more youth-friendly place, a more youth-conducive place, a place that is 21st century, and that is a home for the 1.8 billion young people around the world?

How do we make sure that every young person has access to the basic services, basic rights? So next time, when there is a pandemic and young people who don’t have access to the internet, do not get left behind.’

Speaking after the meetings Aishwarya Machani, Convenor of the Next Generation Fellows said:

“We’ve been set a daunting task but the message from leaders across the United Nations system is clear. There’s a real opportunity to influence not just the policies and priorities of politicians in the years ahead but also to make suggestions about how powerful institutions can do more to share their power with young people in the interests of future generations.” 

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