Bogota, 7 October –The United Nations announced today that it was seeking applications for its second class of Young Leaders for the Sustainable Development Goals–exceptional young people who are leaders in the effort to end poverty, combat climate change and reduce inequalities.
Led by the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth Jayathma Wickramanayake, the Young Leaders Initiative recognizes 17 young leaders every year who are driving bold efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. Ms. Wickramanayake made the announcement at the One Young World summit in Bogota alongside the inaugural class of Young Leaders for the SDGs.
The Young Leaders programme places a spotlight on young people between the ages of 18-30 from around the world, and across many different issues, who are leading positive change towards a sustainable future. The 17 chosen Young Leaders will work with the UN Envoy on Youth to engage young people in the Sustainable Development Goals, advocate for their achievement and contribute to a brain trust supporting the UN’s advocacy efforts to mobilise young people.
“Young people today are not the leaders of tomorrow – we are the leaders of today”, said Ms. Wickramanayake. “Nowhere is that more true than in the efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Never before has a generation been so well equipped – with the knowledge, the passion and the technology – to put the planet and our societies on a sustainable path. Young people are the secret weapon to achieving the Goals.”
Today, there are 1.8 billion people between the ages of 10-24—they are the largest generation of youth in history. Their numbers are expected to grow: between 2015 and 2030 alone, about 1.9 billion young people are projected to turn 15 years old. Continue reading