7th AFRICAN YOUTH AND GOVERNANCE CONFERENCE JOHANNESBURG 2015
THEME: “AU AGENDA 2063 AND POST-2015 SDGs:
Investing in Africa’s YOUTH for peace and development”
The 7th African Youth and Governance Conference (AYGC) to be held in Mindrand, Johannesburg, South Africa from the 09th – 15th August 2015.
CAPDEV is co-organising the conference with the Youth Bridge Foundation (YBF), a Youth-based organization (based in Accra, Ghana) established to create supportive platforms to challenge the creativity of the youth, and to make available critical information and resources needed for total development of young people.
Africa today is experiencing the most rapid urbanization in the world and remains a young population with 65% of her over 1.1billion population under the age of 35years. Population Reference Bureau (PRB) projects Africa’s population to more than double, rising from 1.1 billion today to 2.4 billion by 2050. Africa’s youth bulge presents both an opportunity and a challenge. Rapid population growth makes it difficult for economies to create enough jobs to lift large numbers of people out of poverty. Policy makers at national and sub-regional levels are overwhelmed by challenges of unemployment, quality and access to education and basic services like health required in tapping Africa’s demographic dividend. The implications of this challenge poses intractable threat to Africa: requiring collaborative efforts in addressing it.
Building on the themes and outcomes of previous African Youth and Governance Conferences (AYGCs) held annually from 2009 to 2014, the 7th AYGC, Johannesburg 2015 will provide a platform for the young participants to interrogate critical continental and global issues of relevance to youth development in Africa under the conference broad theme “AU Agenda 2063 and Post-2015 SDGs: Investing in Africa’s human capital for peace and development”.
SPECIAL FOCAL AREAS FOR AYGC 2015
The adoption of the AU Agenda 2063 calls for collective effort and provides an opportunity for Africa to reshape its destiny. Given that Agenda 2063 is a fifty-year vision, it is imperative to raise the awareness and interest of young people in the implementation of the plan which has seven “African Aspirations” serving as its basis.
Within the context of the AU Agenda 2063 ambition, the conference participants from the various African countries and the Diaspora, will interrogate challenges to African Unity and development such as the recent xenophobic attacks in South Africa and challenges African migrants face in other African countries. For South Africa, this offers a perfect opportunity to show its commitment to welcoming the rest of Africa.
The Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals seek to build on the Millennium Development Goals which end in December 2015. With Africa being on record as failing to achieve most of the MDG targets, it is critical to mobilize and invest in the continent’s youth to ensure their contribution to, and effective monitoring of the implementation and achievement of development targets.
By addressing the two core issues identified, AYGC 2015 seeks to make a call to the requisite investments into African youth (both at home and in the diaspora), building and harnessing their potential to contribute to peace and sustainable development.
OVERALL OUTCOMES OF THE AYGC
Advocacy » Increased commitment to and investment in youth
Youth Mobilized and Engaged » Increased youth participation and partnerships
Connected African Youth » Increased intercultural understanding among youth
Delegates at the 7th AYGC, Johannesburg 2015 will be placed in Committees based on the areas of expertise and preference, and each Committee will be tasked with the responsibility of finding realistic and practical solutions to a given question. These proposed solutions will come in the form of a Committee Resolution to be presented to all delegates at the General Assembly debate session. The General Assembly debate is the platform for delegates to propose and defend their draft resolutions, even as delegates from other committees assess and critique such. This is the crucial aspect of the conference for all delegates. Resolutions that are passed subsequently form the basis of future advocacy drives.
The 7th AYGC, South Africa 2015 will also adopt a blended approach of having Committee level research and discussions by the youth delegates, and expert sessions still at the Committee work level to enhance the quality of output. The work of each Committee will however be led by youth Committee Chairs who will eventually report to the Board (President and Vice Presidents) of the session.
The Committee work at the 7th AYGC is expected to critically assess the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the Post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals, assessing their impact on youth development and how the youth could be prepared to contribute to the successful implementation of these development ideals.
They will therefore shape the structure of the Committee topics.
The ten (10) Committees under which the 150 delegates will work are listed below:
SPECIAL SIDE EVENT: DIASPORA HOME-COMING SUMMIT
The special side event “HOME COMING SUMMIT” of African Diaspora Youth which is held every two years, will aim at reversing the Brain Drain to Brain Gain under the lenses of tapping Africa’s demographic dividends globally.
The African continent has over 30 million people in the Diaspora. Germany, Canada and the USA for example have over several years hosted and trained high number of African youth offering them the opportunity for advanced and specialized education. With the current remittance flows to and within Africa approaching US$40 billion, the remittances of African Diaspora are often hailed as excellent contribution to National Development yet their talents are not fully tapped into, for the continent’s development agenda.
The platform to re-connect and engage these young talents will be an asset to the continent and help further the prime purpose for which the West hosts them. Ultimately, the AYGC HOME COMING SUMMIT will help make their transition back home as seamless as possible.