UNDP supported the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment to conduct the Youth Leadership Programme from 3-7 September 2019 where a total of 22 youth (14 girls and 8 boys) aged 16-25 years from various islands of Addu City were educated and nurtured to become youth leaders, spearheading initiatives addressing social issues in their communities and acting as key agents of change in their communities.
The participants engaged in a diverse selection of informative sessions facilitated by related organizations and advocates. Some of the key areas covered in these sessions include human rights, politic and governance, culture and heritage, climate change and conservation, gender, first-aid and self-awareness, and health. The sessions also covered personal development skills with specific sessions on leadership, communication, decision making and respecting diversity.
A key focus of the camp was to instill civic responsibility in young people and increase their participation in the community. Accordingly, each day of the camp began with a meaningful community service such as planting trees or cleaning the beach. The ultimate goal was sustained youth participation in the community that would go beyond the camp.
The camp increased the participants’ understanding in the areas of human rights, gender equality, governance, environment and sustainability and with a particular emphasis on culture, heritage and diversity as a key priority for the Ministry. Since the programme, participants have been active in their islands on environmental issues and supported UNDP’s campaign for the Climate Action Summit to highlight Maldives and its vulnerability to the effects of climate change by sharing their message to world leaders on the issue of climate emergency.