UN Women Celebrate Youth Day

The UN Women in Papua New Guinea recently concluded a five-day national training of trainers (TOT) workshop with youths in Goroka, Eastern Highlands Province.

The workshop was aimed at introducing and building understanding of the Sanap Wantaim strategy and tools for use.  

As part of celebrations to mark the International Youth day, UN Women engaged the 33 young people from 12 Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to increase awareness on their role towards achieving gender equality.  The CSOs come under the Spotlight Initiative and Women’s Peace and Humanitarian Fund (WPHF).

UN Women’s Behavior Change Campaign Project Assistant, Joanna Oala said young people have the ability to change norms regarding gender and masculinity.

Gender norms and inequalities affect health outcomes for girls and women, boys and men, and gender minorities. The youth of today are challenged by the systems that drive inequality between men and women.

Ms Oala added that by engaging these students at a young age will teach them to recognize and value differences, in gender and aspects of life, and be advocates in the future for gender equality and inclusiveness.

Participants were able to share individual stories on their passion for creating positive change in their communities and within their provinces.

Carrieta Goye, a young human rights defender based in the Eastern Highlands, asked young people to use their voices to speak up against injustices, advocate for gender equality, Gender Based Violence, climate action, and child marriages in their homes and communities.  “If you see something wrong in your family, community, and even Government, speak up. We are the agents of change. We are the future generation.  If we don’t do something today, then we may lose it forever,” she said

In the discussions, the youth demanded for equal economic rights and opportunities, environmental justice, equal participation in politics and leadership, and freedom from violence.

Carol Kidu