The youth are the torch-bearers of a nation, owing to the huge potential they hold to transform the society for the better. It is estimated that the youth population, aged between 12 and 24, accounts for approximately 23% of the world population. But, having such a massive youth force will not do any good if it’s left unguided. Hence, there is a need to tap this pool. Regarded as the leaders of tomorrow makes it even more crucial to recognise their rights and needs for nurturing their skills to ensure a bright future for the society as a whole.
World Youth Skills Day is a United Nations (UN) designated day which seeks to generate greater awareness and discussion on the importance of technical, vocational, education and training and the development of other skills relevant to both local and global financial state. Sri Lanka initiated this resolution, with the assistance of the G77 and China, which led to the UN General Assembly declaring 15th July as the World Youth Skills Day on 19th December 2014. The goals of this day is to improve the socio economic conditions for today’s youth and address to the challenges of unemployment and under employment.
The need to explore the talent of the youth has now reached a pivotal point. It is necessary that we equip them with skills from a gender and diversity perspective. Fiinovation suggests that focus on young women should be made a priority as their development is crucial to society’s progress. Also, we need to make special efforts to reach out to indigenous and minority youth, youth with disabilities, migrant youth and the like as they are often undervalued.
In recognition of this global problem and in commemoration of World Youth Skills Day 2015, the UN Information Office in Uzbekistan has initiated an awareness-raising campaign titled “If I Were You” aimed at steering young people towards informed life and job choices.
The UN’s theme for this year’s World Youth Skills day is “Education for the 21st Century”. While it may sound academic, it is an umbrella term which explains how education is not confined to just books but also comprises of applied skills, cross-curricular skills, cross-disciplinary skills, transversal skills, and soft skills, among others. The 21st century education should have a holistic approach to learning which should include the most relevant, useful, in-demand, and universally applicable skills. This will enable students to grow in a complex, competitive, information-age, technology-driven economy.
India, having the largest youth population understands the potential of the youth and have stressed on how the world needs skilled manpower. India realises that only a graduation certificate is not enough, skill is also needed and that there is a need to concentrate on skill development. The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) will be launching Skill India Campaign on this World Youth Skills Day, the main objective of which is to converge, coordinate, implement and monitor skilling activities across India.
A walk through history tells us how change has often started with the young. They have the ability to see things the way they are and ask “why?” and then imagine a different world and ask “why not?”. The global leaders can address these questions and play a vital role in their development. They can also come together and establish a global youth skills fund that can become an aid to the youth helping organizations and youth initiatives. We, at Fiinovation, believe that with concrete steps adopted by the government, focusing on youth skill development, the youth can achieve sustained, inclusive and equitable economic growth.
“Much education today is monumentally ineffective. All too often we are giving young people cut flowers when we should be teaching them to grow their own plants.” – John W. Gardner
By – Shantanu Negi
Media Team – Fiinovation