Youth leaders under their umbrella body of the Uganda Youth Coalition for Sustainable Development Goals (UYC-SDGs) are designing a mega-strategic five-year plan that will run between 2023 and 2027 to guide them in realizing the SDGs by 2030.
The 17 SDGs were adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity.
They include; no poverty, zero hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work, and economic growth,
Others are; industry, innovation and infrastructure, reduced inequalities, sustainable cities and economies, responsible consumption and production, climate action, life below water, life on land, peace, justice and strong institutions, and partnership for the goals
Youths are among the implementers of these goals and their contribution will see the smooth realisation.
Speaking at the stakeholders’ engagement yesterday, Mr Joshua Musinguzi the president said that the plan will guide them while carrying out various activities aimed at implementing the SDGs.
“We want to ensure that youth programs in Uganda are implemented and achieved, financing of youth businesses is achieved, businesses that have not been incubated get financial muscles, there is available credit accessibility, and we need training, and mentorship programs since we were hit by covid-19 and environmental conservation of our environment,” he said
The intended UYC-SDGs strategic plan, Mr Musinguzi said is aimed at bringing together different youth clusters including; youth leaders, entrepreneurs, religious leaders, cultural leaders, and media practitioners to ensure that a guiding document is finalized to help Uganda especially youths in implementing the SDGs as Uganda brace for the mid-term review.
Mr Musinguzi however called upon the government to always engage them and include their views while formulating different strategic plans for their easy realization.
“For example during the International Youth Day celebrations, we saw the president launching the youths’ strategic plan but as I talk we don’t know what is inside there. Such plans will fail to be realized if all youths are not involved,” he said.
“We make the biggest population and the youth coalition for SDGs is a strong pillar which binds many youth organizations towards realizing the 17 SDGs so our involvement in these plans shall enable us to rally our fellow youths for collective development,” he added.
Mr Musinguzi said young people need to be snagged by all stakeholders in order for the realization of these goals at ease.
Speaking at the same meeting, Mr Kansime Onezimas the senior program officer of Knowledge management at the SDG secretariat in the Office of the Prime Minister said that they are already engaging young people in different processes,
“We are ensuring that young people are fully involved in the voluntary national review at the high-level political forum which will be held next year so that we have a young people’s voice as we talk about the implementation of SDGs at the global level. We want them to be on board to ensure that they are fully engaged in activities that affect them so that we have a youth voice and their needs are well followed up,” he said.
The young people’s role, he said, is to be fully and meaningfully engaged in the implementation of the SDGs.
“Young people will continue to be more intentional in making sure that there is social inclusion, economic growth, and environmental sustainability in communities where they are,” he said.