It is with a great sense of happiness and pride that Sri Lanka hosts the World Conference on Youth 2014. Sri Lanka has always been an ardent pursuer of youth empowerment and their participation in policy making, and the WCY 2014 marks yet another milestone in our journey ahead.
As a young parliamentarian, I have always believed and advocated for young people to be given their due place in policy formulation and implementation. Young people are not the leaders of tomorrow, but today. We have the dream to see positive change in our societies, and the ability to drive forward to attain our dreams.
Minister Dullas Alahapperuma says the Colombo declaration to be released at the end of the 16th World Conference on Youth to be held in Sri Lanka will be used as a global base to draw policies on youth affairs in the coming decade. All policies with regard to youths from 2015 to 2030 will be drawn according to the terms of this declaration. Hence the Minister said the conference will be of much importance both locally and internationally.
Sri Lankan Ambassador in Cuba Sarath Dissanayake elaborating on the theme of the World Conference on Youth 2014 “ Mainstreaming Youth in the Post 2015 Development Agenda “ said the conference will strive to engage participants in an inclusive dialogue aimed at strengthening the role of youth in developing, implementing and evolving a youth oriented development agenda, thus benefiting the youth and future generations.
The theme song of the National Conference on Youth 2014 composed by Bhathiya, Santhush together with a group of artistes and lyrics by Minister Dullas Alahapperuma was launched before the Journalists today at the Media Centre of the Government Information Department.
Over 103 countries have confirmed their participation for the World Conference on Youth which will be held in Colombo next month. This includes Senior Ministers and Senior Government Officials from over 40 countries, national youth delegates representing 103 States and over 300 youth delegates representing various civil society movements.
As the main highlight of the Plenary Forum at the United Nations in Vienna on 4th April 2014, ahead of the World Conference on Youth to be hosted by Sri Lanka from 6-10 May 2014., a panel discussion followed, chaired by Minister Alahapperuma, which covered the different strands of the overarching theme of the World Conference on Youth.