International Youth Day is observed on 12 August each year to promote ways to actively involve young people in making positive contributions to their communities.
On 12 August, the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) commemorated International Youth Day with the rest of the international community. The agency hosted a round table discussion where representatives from youth structures, non-governmental organisations, students, student formations, and the public and private sector reviewed how far South Africa is in speeding up youth development.
High quality education, job creation, initiating skills development programmes, and getting young people to volunteer their services for the benefit of their communities are some of the targets that have been outlined in the African Youth Charter; National Youth Policy and World Youth Programme. “We will take stock of the progress we have made thus far and assess ways we can fast track our plans,” said Andile Lungisa, the NYDA Chairperson.
Lungisa said as the largest population group, South African young people should be playing a leading role in contributing towards the South African economy. However, many young women and men are unemployed and have not been able to develop their full potential.
“We will be rallying the support of various stakeholders such as the public and private sector and civil society, because collectively we can make a substantial dent in addressing the challenges faced by young people,” Lungisa said.