The purpose will be to provide greater employment, education and entrepreneurship opportunities for the 160 million young people in the region
Good intentions marked the end of the 25th Ibero-American Summit held on 28 and 29 October in Cartagena de Indias (Colombia). The Heads of State and Government closed the meeting with an ‘Ibero-American Youth Pact’, which seeks to provide opportunities for the young people of the region with difficulties to access education and employment.
This is an alliance involving various political, economic and social agents from the region with a view to generating mechanisms, harmonizing investment and developing actions of a regional nature. “The aim is to help overcome the barriers that hinder access to educational and economic opportunities for a large number of young people in Latin America and contribute to their overall development“, said Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia before handing over the presidency of the Ibero-American Summit to Guatemala.
The leaders summarized ‘Pact for Youth’ in 24 points, which should be translated into specific actions in each of the countries in the region. (summary):
1. Introduce the participation of young people in the 2030 Agenda by setting up a regional system of youth targets and indicators.
2. Recognize the rights of young people by voluntarily promoting the ratification and promotion of the Ibero-American Convention on the Rights of Young People.
3. Promote diverse and inclusive societies, with equal opportunities for all, based on the non-discrimination of young people through the implementation of regional awareness, prevention and care campaigns.
4. Promote the systematization and exchange of data, information, best practices, and research in the field of youth, by implementing Big Data and a Youth knowledge ecosystem.
5. Place the focus on youth in cross-cutting development policies by defining governmental strategies; thus, strengthening youth institutions.
6. Enhance public youth policies by promoting youth development agreements between public and private agents.
7. Promote the participation of young people in driving public affairs and preparing national development strategies, by implementing an Ibero-American youth political leadership programme, with special emphasis on women.
8. Promote the participation of young people in transforming society by developing a Latin American youth volunteer programme.
9. Encourage the participation of young people in generating public opinion by strengthening institutional spaces and alternative means of communication, headed by young people themselves.
10. Promote the involvement of young people in regional integration by consolidating academic mobility, volunteer and cultural exchange programmes.
11. Promote an educational offer that is consistent with the real situation of young people that includes employment generating systems through developing regional strategies for the development and certification of socio-labour skills.
12. Encourage young people to use technologies to generate social value, by implementing a regional digital innovation and leadership programme.
13. Develop a study on new youth employment trends and their relationship with the digital revolution in order to establish a policy framework for governments.
14. Generate decent employment initiatives on the basis of social dialogue directed at Latin American youth, and forming a strategic intersectoral and multi-agent alliance.
15. Promote the social, economic and political integration of young people with disabilities, acknowledging their right to employment by implementing plans to access training and the adaptation of jobs.
16. Increase the role of young entrepreneurs and enhance social innovation projects through collaborative platforms and access to funding.
17. Promote scientific vocations and the access of young people to a scientific career and to opportunities for innovative entrepreneurship.
18. Promote the economic empowerment of young women from a perspective of social co-responsibility and labour insertion, by developing production skills, entrepreneurship programmes, microfinance systems and cooperatives.
19. Encourage open cooperation between young people to develop initiatives with a social impact, through actions such as creating time banks (voluntary exchange of knowledge) aimed at exchanging services and knowledge.
20. Strengthen young people’s cultural and sporting facets to improve social cohesion and assess their impact through regional initiatives on experimentation, mobility and the exchange of experiences.
21. Promote the role of young people as promoters of a culture of peace, by creating training programme aimed at preventing violence and resolving conflicts.
22. Encourage public policies aimed at strengthening cultural endeavours and integral education.
23. Reduce teenage unwanted pregnancy rates by designing and implementing a regional programme that recognizes and promotes the sexual and reproductive rights of young people.
24. Promote youth projects aimed at protecting the environment, encouraging respect for mother earth and the sustainable use of resources through incentives for implementing local initiatives.