The Unlock Declaration

Sep 23, 2021

A dozen major international youth-led and youth-focused organizations have joined forces to put their collective power behind a shared commitment to cooperation in the interests of the next and future generations.

The Unlock Declaration has been signed by leaders of organizations with almost half a billion members worldwide, and has the potential to be an incredibly exciting moment for how the needs and priorities of young people are represented to and within the international system.

The Next Generation Fellows were proud to be part of the high-level virtual Unlock the Future event which featured global leaders and youth activists as part of the United Nations General Assembly week in New York. 

The initial priorities for the emerging coalition will include:

Advancing shared goals – We will increase commitments to act on priorities for young people and future generations, securing gains that make a difference to their lives and to the planet.

Fostering opportunities – We will help young people to find opportunities for civic engagement and social action, and to develop the skills they need to lead and mobilize in the face of emerging threats and challenges.

Voice and representation – We will ensure that young people from all backgrounds are at the heart of decision-making processes and improve meaningful representation for all young people, including those most impacted by discrimination and inequality.

Resourcing – We will work collectively on increasing funding for child, youth-led, and youth-focused networks and movements, and work with funders to make funding more strategic, inclusive, and accessible.

The announcement of the coalition comes just a few days after the United Nations Secretary-General set out his priorities for the future of global co-operation in his report Our Common Agenda, which called on countries and citizens across the world to look for “renewed solidarity between generations.”

Signatories of the declaration include WEF Global Shapers, Restless Development, Girl Up, BRAC, the United Nations Foundation, and all the members of the Big 6 – World Organization of the Scout Movement, World Young Men’s Christian Association, World Young Women’s Christian Association, World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award. A number of other major campaigning organizations are supporting the work, including Save the Children and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation.

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