YouthLinkExpress Newsletter
vol 8.11
:: Spotlight
UN General Assembly report on Youth released
A new report on the implementation of the World Programme of Action for Youth has been released by the UN General Assembly. The report looks at challenges and opportunities facing young people around well-being and civil society. The report also proposes goals and targets for monitoring the progress of youth in these areas. Read the report here!

1. Network News
2. Get Involved
3. In the spotlight
4. Of Interest
5. Opportunities
6. Take Action

Vidar Ekehaug and Christine Seifert.

Mike Alves, Rik Jacquemyn, Aleksandra Radyuk, and Christine Seifert.
:: MDG Youth Portal
:: Global Youth
Service Day
:: Global Youth Coalition on HIV/AIDS
:: GYAN Mexico
:: Introduction

Dear Friends,

On November 4, the United States elected Barack Obama as its next president, marking the first time the country elected someone from a minority group as its leader. The election was closely monitored by billions of people around the world - so significant is the impact of this election on people's lives even outside the US, and so deep is the fascination with the election mania that grips the US every four years.

On election night, when the result was clear, I witnessed the streets of New York explode into a spontaneous celebration of history, change, and hope. Barack Obama ran a campaign grounded in optimism - a belief that it is possible to change the world for the better - and the celebrations taking place in other countries indicate that he has inspired so many more than just his constituents in the US.

Obama mobilized millions of volunteers with his message, many of them young people who have seldom been so involved in the political process, and brought about an historic change in the US. Can such engagement and change be replicated elsewhere around the globe? There are more than enough news about conflicts, natural disasters, and food shortages which motivate us to continue stepping up the work that we do. But inspiration comes from optimistic and engaging messages, remarkable stories of individual achievements, and a positive vision for the future that creates a sense of community and solidarity.

Young people possess energy and idealism in abundance, and also the numbers to have a real impact in the world. We need a positive message that turns the world's current challenges into engaging opportunities for change. We need a positive global vision that will inspire action from the world's youth. Obama has certainly shown us it is possible.

In solidarity,

Vidar Ekehaug
Program Manager

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Youths discuss Africa's future
11/12/08, Africa News - Ethiopia
African youths are gathering in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to brainstorm and provide recommendations on how best the continent should be developed. More here.

Generation O Gets Its Hopes Up
11/07/08, New York Times - USA
Generation O is that college kid at the White House gate early Wednesday morning, lifting his shirt to reveal “Obama” painted in red on his chest. More here.

Experts say youth can play big role in combating Islamaphobia
11/13/08, WorldBulletin - Azerbaijan
One of the Islamic conference Youth forum's project aims to create formal mechanisms which will include experts from various religions such as scholars, youth leaders and civil society leaders. More here.

Afghan girl says acid attack won't stop her lessons
11/15/08, - Afghanistan
A victim of an acid attack on schoolgirls in Afghanistan said Saturday she was determined to stay in school and finish her education even if that meant risking death. More here.

GYAN conducts member consultation on social integration
In preparation for the 47th session of the Commission for Social Development, GYAN organized an e-consultation with member organizations to get feedback and input on the theme of social integration. The summary and recommendations from the consultation will be submitted as an official document to the Commission. For more details, please visit the consultation page.

GYCA members organize events for World AIDS Day
World AIDS Day is held on December 1st of every year to commemorate the long struggle against the global spread of HIV and AIDS and to raise awareness about what activists are doing today to ensure that the needs of all people affected by HIV and AIDS are fully met. In the spirit of empowering young leaders to take on HIV and AIDS-related issues in their communities, the GYCA has created a webpage for members to announce events occurring on World AIDS Day. Check it out here!

GYAN Ghana participates in African Youth Day
On this year's African Youth Day in Accra, young people lamented that there was inadequate commitment by politicians and other leaders of the country to issues concerning young people. The theme of the event was “Peace Solidarity and Positive Values Promoted by African Youth” and it was organized by UNICEF and Speak Ghana. Mr. Kwame Frempong of GYAN Ghana asked government to involve young people in the formulation of policies that concerned their welfare. He said “an empowered, knowledgeable and skillful youth of today would be tomorrow's human resource base and leaders.” For more information, please click here.

:: Sign Up on
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:: The MDG Youth Campaign Kit
Includes a Youth Action Guide to mobilize for the MDGs
:: Organizations: Join GYAN!
Become a member of a growing alliance of youth organizations.

Global Challenge Award
The Global Challenge is an online international competition that encourages learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. It aims at giving students the tools and confidence to solve global problems together. Registration is open for anyone not attending university yet. Learn more about it here.

Obama to Poland - let's finish the job
The most recent science tells us that unless we can reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to 350 parts per million, we will cause huge and irreversible damage to the earth. aims to make sure everyone knows the target so that our political leaders feel real pressure to act, starting with the climate change negotiations in Poland in December. Get involved now!

UNESCO: Sharing best practices in youth policies and programmes
UNESCO is working with a range of partners to identify and share successful youth policies and programmes in Latin America and the Caribbean. The selected programmes will be presented and discussed during a Regional Meeting which will take place in Mexico in April 2009 and will receive official recognition. Subsequently, these practices will be published in a book and a technical guide. For more information, please contact Berenice Alcalde.

:: UN Blog
GYAN staff and interns regularly attend meetings and briefings at the UN; check this blog to see what is happening.
:: The VOICE Section informs youth on how to get involved in policy, and reports on those of interest to young people.

Climate change worries young Russians less than other teens
10/25/08, RIA Novosti - Russia
Young Russians are less concerned than their counterparts in other countries... More here.

Tees initiative set for top showcase
10/24/08, The Evening Gazette - United Kingdom
The success of a young people-led enterprise in Middlesbrough is to be showcased... More here.

If you are young and business-minded
11/16/08, nstonline - Malaysia
Budding young entrepreneurs can rub shoulders with their more established peers... More here.

Chinese, Japanese PMs hail successful youth exchange year
11/12/08, ChinaView - Japan
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and his Japanese counterpart Taro Aso on Wednesday... More here.

Seven opposition youths grabbed by police during protest in Minsk
11/07/08, Belarusskye Novosti - Belarus
Seven members of the Malady Front opposition youth group were grabbed by police during a demonstration... More here.

How to resolve youth development issue
10/30/08, Vanguard - Nigeria
About 170 million young people across the globe are still illiterate, with Africa having the highest... More here.

Children's Parliament of Guinea-Bissau presents its 'Manifesto' to candidates
11/10/08, ReliefWeb - Guinea-Bissau
The Children's Parliament of Guinea-Bissau last week presented its 'Manifesto' ... More here.

Young People Get Summit, But No Convention
10/28/2008, IPS - El Salvador
On the eve of the 18th Ibero-American Summit in the capital of El Salvador... More here.

Youths, we can achieve greatness
11/18/08, Jamaica Observer - Jamaica
November 10, 2008 was the sixth sitting of the Youth Parliament, which brought together... More here.

Peace in Mindanao needs youth dialogue
10/31/08, - Philippines
Pluralism and multiculturalism are ways to promote interaction among the country's young people. More here.


UNICEF Voices of Youth launches youth survey
UNICEF Voices of Youth (VOY) is an online space for children and young people to learn and express themselves about global issues. Have your organization worked with UNICEF or other UN agencies in the past? Or are you interested in working with them in the future? UNICEF VOY has launched a survey to ask about your experiences working with the UN system and want to know your opinion on what works and what does not work. For more information, click here.

:: EVENT SPOTLIGHT [Full Calendar]

World Social Forum
Date: January 27 - February 1, 2009
Location: Belém, Brazil
The World Social Forum (WSF) is an opened space - plural, diverse, non-governmental and non-partisan - that stimulates the decentralized debate, reflection, proposals building, experiences exchange and alliances among movements and organizations engaged in concrete actions towards a more solidary, democratic and fair world. For more information, click here.

Global Model UN Conference
Date: August 5-7, 2009
Location: Geneva, Switzerland
The UN Department of Public Information will be organizing the first annual Global Model UN Conference next year. The annual student conference aims to serve as a model of best practices for Model UN conferences. It will encourage the organization of new Model UN programmes where they do not exist, and is expected to inspire the next generation of leaders to get involved in national and global issues. For more information, click here.

International Student Festival in Trondheim (ISFiT)
Date: February 20 - March 2, 2009
Location: Trondheim, Norway
The International Student Festival is the world's largest student festival with a thematic focus, attended by about 450 students from all over the world. The theme of ISFiT 2009 is peacebuilding; how peace can be built and maintained. Registration will open in January 2009. For more information, click here.

Commission for Social Development
Date: February 4-13, 2009
Location: New York, USA
The Commission for Social Development is a functional commission of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations. The Commission takes place every year in February, and the priority theme for 2009 and 2010 is social integration. Policies should seek to reduce inequalities, promote access to basic social services, education for all and health care, and increase the participation and integration of social groups. For more information, click here.

Many scams invite people to register for a youth conference, and intend only to collect registration fees. Please beware and only pay fees when you are certain it is a legitimate event. Common schemes include events taking place both in the USA and other countries.

Conference organized by World Youth Organization for Global Welfare taking place January 23rd-26th, 2009 in San Francisco, California and January 27th-30th, 2009 in Cotonou, Benin.

5th International Workshop of Civil Societies organized by the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in partnership with American Trust Bank, the American Social Affairs, Allegheny Foundation, Brady Education Foundation and Rodney Fund taking place on 15th to 20th December 2008 in California, USA.

International Conferences on The Role of Religion and Human Right in building World Peace December 9th-12th, 2008 in Chicago, Illinois and December 16th-19th, 2008 in Guinea-Bissau, organized by Global Youth Coalition Association (GYCA) USA

:: Foundation Center
:: Grant Station
:: European Foundation Center

:: Everything imaginable on TakingITGlobal
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Living in Limbo
Burma's youth in Thailand see few opportunities to use education skills. This new report is based on the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children's May 2008 visit to the Thailand-Burma border. Living in Limbo highlights how refugee youth have few opportunities to continue their studies or to put into practice what they have learned, and as a result, are becoming increasingly frustrated and despondent about their futures. For more information, click here.

Youth Employment - Making it happen
The International Labour Organization (ILO) in partnership with the International Organisation of Employers just released their newest tool: "Youth Employment: Making It Happen - An electronic resource tool for employers". Since youth employment is a key priority for the international community, the new tool provides an overview of youth employment challenges and the role of the private sector in promoting access of young people to work. A compendium of useful resources can also be found on the website. For more information, click here.

:: Public Services International
:: Communication Initiative
:: International Environment & Develepment Vacancies


Program Officer at Youth Challenge International
Youth Challenge International (YCI) in Zanzibar, Tanzania is now seeking an international development or education professional with proven project, financial and personnel management abilities to work on their Zanzibar programs. You will cement relations with our local partner organizations as well as ensuring the success of the volunteer sending program. The application deadline is December 31st, 2008. For more information, click here.


Interactive course on HIV/AIDS for educators
This interactive, e-learning course aims to help educators develop a broad base of knowledge of HIV/AIDS, either for teaching purposes or for the coordination of related programmes. The course is primarily geared toward people who are involved in educating young people in formal and informal settings - school teachers, school directors, education managers, peer educators or community trainers. For more information, click here.


Micro Finance Outreach officers
Volunteer Partnerships for West Africa is a growing not-for-profit and non governmental youth-led organization in Ghana. It has initiated an Interest Free Micro Finance Scheme to be formally launched in January 2009 and is now looking for committed individuals and groups who want to take part in this project in the first three months to apply as outreach officers. For more information, click here.

Website Design
If you have skills in designing web sites for not-for-profit organisations and are willing to put 2-3 hours a week in support of children and youths issues, you should consider this volunteer opportunity offered by GLOWA Cameroon. You could help in designing a web site and offer basic training to GLOWA staff on web site management. For more information, click here.



A million messages to OBAMA
As the United States prepares for a new president, the world is seizing this historic and hopeful moment to send a flood of global messages. Take this opportunity to message president-elect Barack Obama about the world's most pressing issues today. For more information, click here.







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