Creating spaces for youth and young professionals to lead governance, entrepreneurship, and advocacy: Nepali Yuwa in Climate Action and Green Growth, the YouthCAN.org.
Youth Innovation Lab (YI-Lab) along with the consortium partners, CREASION, Restless Development and Centre for Disaster Management Studies (CDMS), with funding from the European Union organized the second annual sharing event of Nepali Yuwa in Climate Action and Green Growth. Completing the second year in Karnali Province, the annual sharing event was organized to share experiences, learnings, knowledge generated, and innovation brought working with local and provincial level governments, youth, and young professionals. In the second year, 1954 youth have been reached (this includes fellows, mentees, volunteers, digital advocates, and youth reached via digital advocacy campaign, Climate Smart Entrepreneurship, and Climate Fellows), 450 government representatives/officials have been oriented on BIPAD Portal, DRRM and CCA, 3918 community members have been reached during critical infrastructure data collection and VCA, and 17 local/sectoral experts have been engaged as mentors. Through the Climate Fellowship component of the project, ten Climate Fellows were stationed at the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Law, Karnali Province, and nine project municipalities to support the localization of disaster and climate-related plans and policies and the localization of national integrated Disaster Information Management System, Bipad Portal and collected 1782-point data of critical infrastructures. Likewise, through Climate Smart Entrepreneurship, six entrepreneurs were selected for the Innovation Grant 2023 from the cohort of 20 who had undergone three months of mentorship. At the event, six Innovation Grant winners displayed their products. Furthermore, through TagMe: Digital Campaign, 600+ youth joined Data-driven Advocacy and collected 1500+ landslide data to advocate for informed and resilient development.
The annual sharing event started with an innovation walk to showcase three project components, where six Innovation Grant Winners of 2023 showcased their products, climate fellows shared their experiences and knowledge generated through the fellowship grant, and digital volunteers shared about the data-driven advocacy through the Tagme campaign.
Giving special remarks on the Role of Youth in Climate Action and Green Growth, Eloisa Astudillo, Deputy Head of Cooperation of the European Union shared that when we are working with young people we are working with people that have energy, dynamism, ideas, and values in protecting the world and addressing the climate change. Promoting the role of young people is one of the priorities of EU and EU partnerships with countries like Nepal that have the opportunity to work and shape their future with their strength and capacity. Highlighting global challenges like climate change, she said the EU is making changes inside of Europe to address climate change and trying to be the first climate-neutral continent by 2050.
Giving the project overview, Goma Karki, the project lead of YouthCAN.org, emphasized the essence of the project through three key components: Governance, Entrepreneurship, and Advocacy, and shared the knowledge generated from the project.
Surendra Basnet, Vice President of the National Youth Council emphasized the importance of youth engagement to promote Entrepreneurship and Innovation. He thanked TheYouthCAN.org for building entrepreneurship in the Karnali province. Appreciating the innovative ideas of the youth, he promised to continue collaboration with them. In conclusion, Climate change is a global threat, we would like to have youths to mitigate the impacts of this problem.
As a closing remark: Pradip Khatiwada, Executive Director, YI-lab thanked the partner’s organization especially the EU for continuous support and creating space for youth and young professionals in DRR, climate change, entrepreneurship, and digital advocacy.