The 2018 United Nations International Youth Day/ Week celebration is set to take a new dimension in the City of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, with over 150 volunteers who have signed up for the planning and execution of the event. The organizers, Character and Success Social Enterprise (CSSE) promises that it will be a life-time experience for youths in the state.
The theme for this year’s celebration is: ‘Safe Spaces for Youths’. Youths need safe spaces where they can come together, engage in activities related to their diverse needs and interests, participate in decision making processes and freely express themselves. While there are many types of spaces, safe spaces ensure the dignity and safety of youth. Safe spaces such as civic spaces enable the youths to engage in governance issues; public spaces afford youth the opportunity to participate in sports and other leisure activities in the community; digital spaces help youth interact virtually across borders with everyone; and well planned physical spaces can help accommodate the needs of diverse youth especially those vulnerable to marginalization or violence.
Ensuring that safe spaces are inclusive, youth from diverse backgrounds especially those from outside the local community need to be assured of respect and self-worth. In humanitarian or conflict prone settings for example, youth may lack the space to fully express themselves without feeling uncomfortable or unwelcome. Similarly, without the existence of safe space, youth from different race/ ethnicity, gender, religious affiliation or cultural background may feel intimidated to freely contribute to the community. When youth have safe spaces to engage, they can effectively contribute to development, including peace and social cohesion.
Founder, Character and Success Social Enterprise and Visionary, IYD Uyo, Gideon Ekanem has stated that there is a lot to look out for at this year’s one week celebration in the City of Uyo. They will be art exhibition, skills acquisition, leadership and entrepreneurship training, panel session, work out session, Mr and Miss IYD Akwa Ibom State, IYD Movie premier and lots more.
The event is schedule to kick start on Monday, August 6th, to Sunday, August 12th, 2018. Join the conversation with the hashtag #IydUyo #SafeSpaces4Youth #YouthDay #Casse, and also follow on Instagram and Twitter @iyduyolive, and Facebook @iyduyo.
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