GOYN Youth Convening

As the world adjusts to the new normal and virtual engagements, the Global Opportunity Youth Network has not been left behind as it successfully hosted its one-of-a-kind virtual convening. The convening spanned over a 4 day period, brought together youth, young leaders, peers, and partners for an exchange of ideas on the challenges and opportunities that unemployed youth face as they navigate a path towards dignified livelihoods in a rapidly changing world.

Over the 4 days, topical issues and discussions were deliberated on including: unpacking how COVID-19 is impacting young people in their communities, as well as brave, guided, and fascinating dialogues on structural injustices amongst other topical issues. The event brought together hundreds of participants drawn from over 30 countries. The discussions were moving. The youth participation and articulation of issues were outstanding.

Youth Voice and Radical Collaboration!

The first day of the convening saw Youth Advisory Group Members from various GOYN communities present findings from enquires conducted with their peers on how racial and structural injustices were affecting their access to livelihood opportunities. From the presentations, it was clear that there was a striking commonality of these injustices across the communities. This vindicates the call to action by GOYN to foster a united approach to addressing these inequalities, geographical boundaries, race, and nationalities notwithstanding.

The second day of the convening brought together our collaborative infrastructure from across our communities for a day of “radical collaborations.”

Day 3 was a beehive of activities. We hosted five panels with young people and expert allies to discuss the role of data in accelerating systemic shifts in addressing youth unemployment and youth journeys towards their own prosperity, and further unpacked the opportunities and gaps young people experience in the GOYN priority pathways of health, entrepreneurship as well as arts and creatives. The day further saw the official launch of the global innovation Fund which will be seeking to support opportunity youth community leaders to accelerate their innovative solutions aimed at empowering their communities. The fund will be rolled out across all GOYN’s communities from March 2021.

Structural Injustices

The climax of the convening was the global call to action and reiterated commitment by stakeholders to continue with the collaboration towards creating a narrative change on how opportunity youths were viewed and supported across the globe. It is our commitment to continue engaging all stakeholders across the globe to ensure that Global opportunity youth have access to dignified, productive, and sustainable entrepreneurship and employment pathways.

As the curtains came down on #GOYNC20, we are only motivated to continue with our efforts across our current communities as well as for us to expand our initiatives across the globe. We appreciate all our funders, our anchor partners, and all other collaborative anchors and the opportunity youth for the great participation during this convening. We can only hope to see you again in #GOYNC21 and hopefully, in person thanks to you playing your role in flattening the curve! Wear your mask! Sanitize! Maintain social distance!

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