East African Community Headquarters, Arusha, 1 December 2014:
The 1st East African Community (EAC) Youth Conference themed The EAC Youth: Think. Speak. The EAC Youth Conference is scheduled to take place 5 to 6 December 2014 at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.
According to the EAC Deputy Secretary General in charge of Productive and Social Sectors Hon. Jesca Eriyo, the 1st EAC Youth conference is the first formal process of engaging the Youth in the region following the adoption of the EAC Youth Policy by the EAC Council of Ministers In August 2013. The Policy guides the Community in planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating programmes geared towards the youth in the region while ensuring sustainable social, economic and political development.
The theme of the Youth Conference will be realised through discussions on a number of interrelated sub themes including; entrepreneurship, employment, skills development and innovation; leadership, governance, peace building, human rights and conflict management; creativity, expression and transformation; youth and sexual reproductive health and substance abuse; and youth: environment, climate change adaptation and mitigation.
The EAC Youth Conference is expected to bring together over 200 youths drawn from diverse backgrounds taking into account gender, marginalised youth, rural youth, youth living with disabilities, youth in slum dwellings, among others. Other participants include Government officials, Young Parliamentarians, PSOs, CSOs, professional bodies, Academia/Universities, Media and EAC Organs and Institutions, Development Partners and other interest groups.
The 1st EAC Youth Conference is convened as a platform to disseminate the Youth policy, strengthen existing pillars as well as set new strategies for more sustained and meaningful engagement of the youth in the overall EAC integration agenda.