Youth Advocates: The Future of The Bahamas
Just as with every major grouping of people in The Bahamas, the representation of the voices in young people in decision-making and innovation is key to nation building.
“Today’s youth need real opportunities to participate in political processes and contribute to practical solutions that advance development. When given an opportunity to organize, voice their opinions and play a meaningful role in political decision making, young people consistently demonstrate their willingness and ability to foster positive, lasting change. They also become more likely to demand and defend democracy, and gain a greater sense of belonging.” - The National Democratic Institute
ORG continues to support this stance by advocating for the inclusion of young people, and recently ran a social-emotional learning project for young people called the “Me, You, Us Youth Saloon”. The project, supported by COIN and ran through ORG’s Education pillar, put youth at the center of designing solutions and interventions for challenges that impacted their communities. Two cohorts participated in the project that specifically looked at tackling gender-based violence (GBV)). Cohort one ran the “No Slappin’ Up” podcast series that featured candid discussions around GBV & cohort two hosted an engaging roundtable style video series called “Listen Up!”
Both projects demonstrated creativity and innovation, while utilizing social media and other relevant, high-traffic communication channels to bring awareness to an issue plaguing the country. Notably, the series presented credible data, tangible solutions and access to resources through partnering with representatives from agencies like the Bahamas Crisis Centre and Equality Bahamas.
This project is one example of many that show that the contribution of young people to national development need not be put on hold until they attain a certain age. Youth are viable leaders and contributors and as data around the principles of representation often suggest, people that are actually faced with the challenges at hand should be consulted when considering solutions.
To learn more about ORG Education initiatives, you can email [email protected]