By: SHAHZAD HUSSAIN, Youth Volunteer, RAHNUMA-FPAP
International Youth Day has been celebrated since 1999 when The United Nations General Assembly on December 17, 1999 in its resolution 54/120, endorsed the recommendation made by the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth that 12 August be declared International Youth Day. The Assembly recommended that public information activities be organized to support the Day as a way to promote better awareness of the World Program of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond, adopted by the General Assembly in 1995 (resolution 50/81). It is meant as an opportunity for governments and others to draw attention to youth issues worldwide. Concerts, workshops, cultural events, and meetings involving national and local government officials and youth organizations take place around the world in honor of International Youth Day.
According to a survey conducted by World Population Foundation (WPF), Pakistan currently has the largest group of youth (Ages 10 – 24) in its history with nearly 54.2 million individuals almost 34% of its total population and in 2025; the number of this age group will further increase to 64.8 Million, high share by any standards. International Youth Day gives a unique opportunity to recognize the potential of youth, to celebrate their achievements, and plan for ways to better engage young people, to successfully take action in the development of their societies. It gives an opportunity for all stakeholders to stand together to ensure that young people are included in decision-making at all levels and the outcome of such decisions will have a direct and lasting impact on the lives of the young people and in equally significant impact on the social and economical future of the country. It is imperative that youth embrace the challenge of sustainability in its fullness as they help pave the way forward.
To aware and advocate young people about their rights and to get support and to create conducive and enabling environment for the youth program in community for the implementation of youth friendly SRH&R services, International Youth Day was celebrated under the platform of RAHNUMA – FPAP, Lahore Region with the collaboration of Youth Groups, Mussawat Welfare Society, Qalandarpura, Clean and Green Welfare Society, Green Town and Model Youth Wing, Shamki Bhattianon, on 11th of August 2010 at Al-Janat Banquet Hall, Johar Town Lahore.
The day was celebrated with the spirit of theme of the year as:
“Dialogue and Mutual Understanding”
A. To conduct this event, program implementation committee was formulated as follows:
- Mr. Shahzad Hussain (Youth Volunteer)
- Ms. Sadaf Naseem (Youth Volunteer)
- Mr. Fsahat Ul Hassan (Youth Volunteer)
- Ms. Irum Mehtab (Youth Volunteer)
B. International Youth Day was celebrated with the following proceedings:
- International Youth Day theme was observed
- Speeches on Youth Issues
- Panel Discussion among Youth and Youth Issues Experts
- Stage Play by Youth group on HIV &AIDS
- Comedy stage Play
- Floating Balloons Activity
- Musical Concert
The program was started at 03:00 PM with the recitation of Holy Quran by, youth member from Youth Resource Centre Green Town. After that the anchor persons Mr. Shahzad Hussain and Ms. Irum Mehtab, welcomed the guests and the participants, introduced their selves and the guests to the participants, and also given an introduction to familiarize them with the aim of International Youth Day.
Speech on “Dialogue and Mutual Understanding”
Mr. Umer Bhatti, Youth Volunteer from YRC Shamki Bhattian came for speech on dialogue and mutual understanding. He described the issues very well and reiterated that the active participation of youth is very necessary for development of the country. He also enlightened that today’s youth and adult partnership is necessary to reduce the communication gap. He also described that youth is a most important asset of our society, so that active youth participation in decision making can be more effective at policy level.
Speech on “Invest in the adolescent Girls”
Ms. Shamila Rana Youth Volunteer from YRC for Girls Qalander Pura, especially focused on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights issues for girls in Pakistan. She also expressed that all young people (especially girls) are empowered and sustain the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to make safe choices about sexuality by adapting responsible behaviors. She also highlight that if you want to change the world invest in the adolescent girls, and ensure that girl have access to quality education and health care; adequate livelihood; and freedom from violence, HIV/AIDS, and harmful practices such as child marriage.
Speech on “Current Issues of Pakistan”
Young member of Mussawat Welfare Society, Mr. Nasir made speech on current issues of Pakistan, he enlightened that with the uphill struggle of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and our elders, we are taking breath and living in an independent country now it is our duty to take our country at a better position in the world, there are many problems which required our dedication to be solved, and it is the time to get realize and to do something for development of our country. The participants pay attention on his words and listen it very carefully.
Panel Discussion on “Dialogue and Mutual Understanding”:
Panel discussion was held on Dialogue and Mutual Understanding, anchor persond for panel disfollowing were the panelists:
Mr. Sohail Mubarik, Unit Coordinator, Saahil Organization.
Mr. Ahmed Bilal, Clinical Psychologist, Rahnuma Youth Help Line
Mr. Waheed Ashraf , Youth Issues Expert.
The panelists took five minutes each to express their own views regarding Dialogue and Mutual Understanding; they told the participants about dialogue, its importance and how youth can express their selves through dialogue. Mr. Sohail Mubarik, Unit Coordinator, Saahil briefly told the participants that youth can bring change by utilizing the power of dialogue.
Stage plays by Youth Groups
Our youth groups from YRCs performed on different stage plays on Youth Related Issues facing by youth in Pakistan.
Floating Balloons activity
We designed balloons with different messages in different colors and floated with printed banners at famous rush place in Lahore.
A musical band was invited to perform in this event first time at Regional level. Our youth members performed on different songs and also sang very well. Youth also enjoyed dancing on floor as well.
Vote of Thanks:
Rapping the program activities, Mr. Shahzad Hussain, thanked the participants for the active participation and sparing their time to make this event successful.