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Involve more youth in climate change discourses at the local level

Raymond Ablorh   Author .jpeg Raymond Ablorh

Sun, 27 Mar 2022 Source: Raymond Ablorh

The United Nations (UN) and development partners across the world are showing some genuine commitment to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Nonetheless, one major phenomenon that visibly threatens the SDGs and which, if not strategically tackled could deny many nations, especially, in Africa, the goals is Climate Change.

There is no single goal on the raft of the global targets which, is free from the effects of Climate Change directly or otherwise.

Recent developments reveal how it is already threatening food sufficiency and food security in developing countries like Ghana as rainfall patterns and volumes deviate from their natural course in Sub- saharan Africa.

This is why African governments and development organisations must focus more committedly on Climate Change to improve mitigation efficiency and effectiveness where the effects are inevitable.

A more effective approach is to enhance strategic participation of young people and the youth in general in preventive and mitigation programmes and projects because they and their future are at the centre of it all.

They have a responsibility to save their future but without necessary knowledge and mitigation tools they cannot help themselves and their communities.

Of course, young people could see the devastations climate change is causing because of how conspicuous they are, but, many do not appreciate with insight the dynamics behind it and how to address the ill-effects so they are helpless. They must be involved more in the discourses and be informed on the causes, effects and remedies, and given the relevant tools of engagement at the local level to address the challenges facing their communities.

This makes the upcoming high profile continental climate change forum in Accra very important. Young Professionals and Youth Coalition (YPYC), the host of the forum is a leading transformational leadership advocate well connected to young people at the grassroots. The climate change fight requires transformational and generational leadership at all levels hence they are among the right people to lead such conversations in Africa.

By bringing students and their leaders and other young people together, they are certainly getting the future involved more and giving the youth the opportunity to help shape their environment and world.

But, the Accra engagement should be the beginning and not the end. Beyond the Accra summit, YPYC and partners must go down to the grassroots across the continent where the effects are dire and drive youth participation more to address the challenges.

Instead of young people migrating and running from these problems in their communities to other places, they must be trained on how to address the challenges and live sustainably in their environments.

Columnist: Raymond Ablorh