VII ECPD Global Youth Forum - YOUTH POWER FOR THE COMMON FUTURE With the main topic YOUTH MOBILIZATION TO REDRESS (THE) PRESENT WorldTRENDS - Belgrade / Novi Sad, 26 - 27 October 2019

 

 

 

 

CONCEPT NOTE

 

The 1992 UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro approved an action plan for sustainable development in the 21st century called Agenda 21, before most particpants in this Forum were born. The call was renewed at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg in 2002, and again at Rio+20, the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012. This led to the adoption at a UN General Assembly summit in 2015 of the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals, together with the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, calling for a fundamental transformation in our society and our economy. Despite all this, little has happened. We seem closer than ever to planetary boundaries, and have overshot several, threatening the future survivability of human life on this planet. The older generations do not have the answers.

The preceding ECPD Conference has discussed this in detail, and some of the results will be available to you to support your own deliberations. In the preparations for the 2030 Agenda, the UN Secretary-General said: “Young people will be the torch bearers... the first truly globalized, interconnected, and highly mobilized civil society, ready and able to serve as a participant, joint steward, and powerful engine of change and transformation.”

Today we see massive protests of  young people around the world calling for immediate action on climate change and other threats to their future. They see the injustice in the failure of adults to take the environmental future seriously, living well while accumulating financial, social and environmental debts that younger generations of today will soon inherit.

There is no time to lose, but protest is not sufficient as an answer. It is not enough to point out what is wrong with society, to march in the streets, to call for a halt to damaging activities. The challenge is to find alternatives and to propose ways forwards. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) can be a useful guide to the many dimensions of the fundamental transformation that is needed, and it may be helpful to refer to them as you reflect on what needs to change. The following are some questions that can help to focus your discussions in this forum. It is for you to find the answers, since no one else can do it for you.

How do we get from here to a better society that is more just, more inclusive, more moderate, more sustainable? What is our vision of the society we should like to live in? What are inherited assumptions about our human purpose, our economic behavior and concepts of society that need to be challenged? What are the ethical values that should be the foundation of our individual and collective behavior? Creative consultation, drawing together a variety of perspectives and experiences, can put new constructive ideas on the table. How can we then turn our aspirations into practical sustainable action?

Consider the present situation in the Balkans and in your own communities, and how far they are from sustainability. What are the most threatening and unsustainable trends in your communities, countries and the Balkans region? What are their underlying causes? And what needs to be done to redress present trends? What are obstacles that need to be overcome? Where can youth have the most immediate impact? How can you use the new information technologies and possibilities for networking and organization to take your movement forward? And how do you stick to your values and avoid being manipulated or co-opted by outside forces? How do you ensure that no one is left behind, as called for in the 2030 Agenda? What concrete proposals can we make?

This youth forum is also an opportunity for you to reflect on your own future. What are the interests, skills and talents that you have to offer? Where can you best make a contribution to a better future? What further education or training will best empower you to fulfil your potential? How can you prepare yourself for a life of service to your community and society? The Youth Forum provides you with space for creativity, a chance to more broadly network and to make a noticable difference to the worlds future,

This is your youth forum and the ECPD can accompany you on the difficult journey by providing hope on the way and celebrating with you on arrival. (It is not for ECPD to dictate what you decide here. All we can do is to accompany you in this process). The future is in your hands.

 


 

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ECPD Books

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Remembering Grant: Champion for Children
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MUTUAL FUNDS IN THE REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA
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NACIONALNA I VERSKA STRUKTURA I BEZBEDNOST BALKANA
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THE IMPACT OF SANCTIONS
Dragoslav Avramović / Negoslav P. Ostojić
Objedinjavanje kvantitativnih i kvalitativnih istraživanja
Živan Ristić

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