The Commonwealth Secretary-General has appealed to governments of member states to continue their support for youth workers and invest in education and training.
Announcing this year’s Commonwealth Youth Work Week at a meeting for young people in Brunei Darussalam, the Patricia Scotland said there were many challenges in the path of policy makers, but urged them to find solutions, stressing the importance of maximising the potential of the next generation.
She said: “The 2019 theme is ‘Youth Work in Action’, and we invite governments and other stakeholders to celebrate all that youth work contributes to community cohesion and national development outcomes.
“We need to trumpet and make more widely known the tremendous work youth workers do to support our young people as coaches, mentors, role models and guides.
“We celebrate them – and I celebrate you, and look forward with eager anticipation to hearing your ideas on how we can work together to accelerate youth development in this region by 2030.”
Brunei is hosting a three-day meeting of senior officials of youth ministries from across Commonwealth Asia, to discuss and agree practical actions that are relevant to the young people and all stakeholders in the region.
Brunei’s youth leader, Awang Aidil Firdaus bin Jukin, told the Secretary-General that Brunei’s Vision 2035 is in-line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals which aims to transform Brunei Darussalam into a nation whose people are educated, highly skilled and successful whilst enjoying a high quality of living.
He said: “Reflecting on how our youth are leading the future of the younger generation, the Government of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam designates the 1st of August every year as the National Youth Day to acknowledge the valuable contribution and achievements of youths to our nation.
“During the review of the National Youth Policy early this year, the youth population in Brunei Darussalam was given the opportunity to contribute their voice and directly influence the contents of the new National Youth Policy.”
Youth Work Week takes place during the first week of November and this year will run from 4 to 10 November in partnership with the Commonwealth Alliance of Youth Workers Association, the National Youth agency UK and the Commonwealth Youth Council.
In 2018, during Commonwealth Youth Work Week, Malta hosted youth workers, academics, government ministries and departments holding youth portfolios at a three-day conference on youth work.