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Speech of Ms. Astrid Bant, UNFPA Representative in Viet Nam, Co-Chair of Thematic Group on Adolescents and Youth of UN in Viet Nam at Celebration Event of the International Youth Day 2019

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Event: Celebration Event of the International Youth Day 2019

Time: 11 August 2019

Venue: Dong Van district, Ha Giang province

  • Mr Dao Quang Dieu, Acting Secretary of Ha Giang Provincial Youth Union;
  • Mr. Nguyen Thanh Hao, Director of the Central Youth and Adolescents Centre, Youth Union;
  • Distinguished guests, youths, UN colleagues, ladies and gentlemen;
  • Dear friends,

On behalf of the United Nations in Viet Nam, I would like to welcome all of you to Dong Van town, Ha Giang province – one of the most beautiful places in the North of Viet Nam - to celebrate this year's International Youth Day. A very special welcome to all the young people here, who are a part of the 28 million adolescents and young people in Viet Nam.

This event is a demonstration of the United Nations' commitment to empower young people, especially in a country like Viet Nam, where a third of the population are adolescents and youth below the age of 29.

In Viet Nam, like in the world at large, the current generation of youth is the largest in history.

The objective of this years' International Youth Day, which is jointly organized by the Ha Giang Provincial Peoples' Committee and the Viet Nam Youth Union and the UN, is to work on the theme of "Transforming Education", looking at global and national efforts to make education more relevant, equitable and inclusive for all youth, especially those experiences that are co-designed and co-implemented by youth.

Dear friends,

I am very happy to be here with you today in Ha Giang province, where a rich and diverse cultural heritage gives rise to great opportunities and challenges to the educational system. We would like to listen to your perspectives on transforming education, and your ideas your on how education could be adapted to build the kind of lives and livelihoods you would like to see for yourselves in the future.

Rooted in Goal 4 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – to "ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all", International Youth Day 2019 will also examine how Governments, young people and youth-led and youth-focused organizations, are transforming education so that it becomes a powerful tool to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Viet Nam is experiencing a period of golden population bonus, recording the highest proportion of young people in the country's history. This period presents Viet Nam with a timely and unique opportunity to plan for a transformation and make its next generation of leaders and advocates the drivers of social, environmental and economic progress.

Dear friends,

This event is a great opportunity for young people to raise their voice and contribute their ideas. The main purpose of your participation is to empower you as individuals and as members of society to fulfill your role to improve the design and implementation of education policies, programmes and investments for young people.

I would like to congratulate the Government of Viet Nam on their considerable efforts in improving the participation of adolescents and youth in the development of youth-related policies and frameworks.

The United Nations will continue to support these efforts, and to work with youth and their organizations with the aim of increasing the participation of young people in developing, implementing and monitoring the policies that affect their lives, such as the important work we have undertaken with the Ministry of Home Affairs in regard to the revision of the Youth Law.

Youth need to be given the space to develop expertise and leadership and be taken on as partners in making of laws and policies that concern them at global, national and local levels.

Tomorrow, 12 August, will be the International Youth Day and the United Nations Population Fund will launch its new corporate strategy for adolescents and youth "My Body, My Life, My World!". The strategy underscores the centrality of young people to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, alignments with the UN Strategy on Youth 2030 launched last year.

Active, knowledgeable and innovative young people will be essential to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and make good on our pledge to leave no one behind.

Today is your day. Enjoy and have a great celebration!

Xin cám ơn !