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Reviewing the National Youth Policy of Saint Lucia

The Government of Saint Lucia requested technical assistance to facilitate the review of the National Youth Policy, which was enacted in 2003.
Country: Saint Lucia
Host: Ministry of Youth Development and Sports
Start date: 3/8/2015
End date: 2/8/2016 
Policy area: Youth Policy and Research
Policy expert: Abhik Sen
Project manager: Oluwatoyin Job
Background

Saint Lucia's National Youth Policy requires a new policy to take into account the changes in the socio-economic landscape of the country, the recent developments at an international level on issues such as: globalisation; lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and inter-sex rights (LGBTI); marijuana legislation; climate change; universal secondary education; and, the advancement of information and communications technology (ICT). 

Perennial challenges, including youth unemployment, gender inequality and access to healthcare, remain a serious impediment to youth development. In order to meet the aspirations of young people in Saint Lucia and enable them to make a full contribution to national development new, innovative and holistic approaches in youth policy are needed. 

Goal

To develop a new National Youth Policy that is evidence based and fit for purpose in 2015 and beyond. 

The project aims to create an improved environment that allows young people to reach their full potential and contribute meaningfully to the development of the country.

Impact

The successful implementation of the project will create a strategic environment that enables the Ministry of Youth Development and Sport to effectively mainstream youth policy across the entire spectrum of the Government of Saint Lucia's policies, programmes and initiatives.

Completion of the project will ensure that there are clear strategies for the implementation of youth policy with meaningful targets and measures put in place to track progress, and the creation of an improved environment that allows young people to reach their full potential and contribute meaningfully to the development of the country.

The CFTC Youth Expert resumed work in August 2015 with the Ministry of Youth Development and Sports in Saint Lucia. 

Outputs

Having ended on August 2016, the project registers the following achievements:

  • A draft policy that satisfies the “measurements” for modern youth policy has been completed including recommendations for implementation. 
  • The review of the Ministry’s capacity for policy implementation was completed.  Recommendations have been made for restructuring the conduct of youth work, and the implementation of the policy. 
  • Design of data tools was undertaken, integrating input of Ministry’s staff who was also involved in the conduct of qualitative research with youth populations.  
  • Meta data on youth in Saint Lucia is lodged with the Department on Youth with recommendations for building on these data sets and reporting for future discrete research.

As a result of this project, some of the key changes that occurred are:

  • Some enhanced understanding / appreciation of the role and practice of youth work for youth development outcomes distinct from sport programming for youth audiences.
  • Better appreciation by youth officers of their role and responsibility for inclusive youth development, with attention to the needs of marginalised and diverse youth communities in the conduct of youth work e.g. LGBTI youth; and youth in the prison system.
  • Better appreciation and knowledge of the use of social research as a critical component of youth development work, planning and programme design and implementation.
  • Enhanced competencies among youth and sport officers and youth leaders for the conduct qualitative and quantitative research.
  • Enhanced awareness and competencies among the National Youth Council, and other youth networks and young people for the design and development of a National Youth Policy.
  • Enhanced awareness of the National Youth Council and youth leaders on youth rights and the responsibility and accountability for young people’s economic, social, civil and political development within agreed international framework of rights (rights-based development). 

The successful implementation of this project will now enable the government to:

  • Integrate youth mainstreaming and streamlined investments for youth development across all government policies, programmes and activities.
  • Implement clear strategies, inter-agency collaborative arrangements and youth inclusive approaches in the public sector.
  • Successfully integrate and balance the national sports portfolio as an enabler of youth development.
  • Institute accountability and performance measurement across all sectors for the delivery of services and products designed for young people.
  • Enhance the identification and promotion of all services in the national landscape in the support of youth development.