August 12 is International Youth Day for 2016 and the theme is – Road to 2030: Eradicating Poverty and Achieving Sustainability. As one of the teen ambassadors for Moeloco and the founder of my own charity and social enterprise initiatives, today is a very important day.
International Youth Day gives us the opportunity to celebrate the youth of today and their roles as ‘powerful agents of positive change’ in the world. As young people we have our whole lives ahead of us. We are the next generation of change makers and the earlier we start putting our energy towards doing good in the world and making an impact, the greater the impact will be. Many people when discussing youth’s roles in society recognise us as the future, but what many forget is we are also the present. The social media platforms provide us with and outlet to connect with other parts of the world, a place to be open-minded and speak about important issues. As a result of this we are becoming much more outspoken about our opinions and the changes we want to see in the world.
“Many people when discussing youth’s roles in society recognise us as the future, but what many forget is we are also the present”
International Youth Day also gives us the opportunity to reflect on our impact in the world and remember the children living in far worse conditions than we are. It gives us all, as a worldwide community the, opportunity to recognise the children living in poverty in India, Africa, South East Asia and even right here in Australia. International Youth Day gives us the opportunity to assess how we can do our part to improve their quality of life and most importantly keep the children of the world smiling.
As a young person on a mission to make an impact in the world and better the lives of the less fortunate – especially the less fortunate youth, today is very important to me. Many times, because of our age, young people can be perceived as immature. However, all over the world there are many young people just like myself that are passionate about giving back and having a purpose. We see what is going on in the world and want to do our part and make a difference.
Today is also an important day for Kathy and our flying naans team as it gives us the opportunity to remember and embrace our time in India and the incredible young girls and boys of The Hope Foundation projects.
One of the most incredible things to come out of our trip was meeting the children and learning about their lives. After all the hardships many of them have faced through their life, not only do they remain happy and smiling but they have such dedication to their dreams and their purpose. In one of the girls homes particularly that we visited there was a group of beautiful girls whose dream was to become teachers and educate the next generation of young people. Another girl has plans of becoming a doctor and helping her community. This is very important to International Youth Day as it shows us that no matter where you are from, no matter your age, you are never to young or old to live your dream and do something good in the world.
The United Nations have numerous ways you can get involved in the celebrations of International Youth Day. I have 3 ways to help eradicate poverty on International Youth Day 2016 that I found were the most accessible for everyone in the Moeloco community (and were some of my personal favourites!). To find the rest of them head to the UNESCO International Youth Day website.
3 Ways to Eradicate Poverty on International Youth Day 2016
1. Use Social Media: share your posts using the hashtags #UN4YOUTH and #YouthDay
2. Advocate: reach out to your local community to strengthen and improve the opportunities available for young people.
3. Be Active: Volunteer and get actively involved in programmes/events and activities supporting international Youth Day.
I hope you all find a great way to celebrate International Youth Day and make a difference in the community.
Good Vibes and Abundance,
Ali Kitinas – Moeloco Teen Ambassador
I AM: Finding the Greatness In You
Kathy Wong – Founder, Moeloco Flip Flops