On May 31st and June 1st, 2012 young Bolivians gathered in Cochabamba for the Finals of the National Talent and Innovation Competition - TIC Bolivia, as the official inaugural program for the XLII General Assembly of the Organization of American States (OAS).
On this platform, attendees had the opportunity to participate in the "Youth Dialogue: Youth Presentation Process Partners for Prosperity in the framework of the Sixth Summit of the Americas," moderated by Nathalia Prada from the Young Americas Business Trust, and Monica Orellana, representative of the III Young Americas Forum. This dialogue presented the consultation process prior to the III Young Americas Forum and the Youth Declaration adopted at the VI Summit of the Americas, and young Bolivians were invited to be part of a youth network of the Americas.
Attendees participated actively in the dialogue and adapted the Youth Declaration to the reality of young Bolivians. They emphasized the theme of the General Assembly, food security, access to information and resources, as well as the promotion of sustainable enterprises. All these contributions were taken into account for June 3rd, when Monica Orellana presented the recommendations of the TIC Bolivia participants in the Dialogue between the Heads of Delegation and the Civil Society in the XLII OAS General Assembly.
"The Young people, whom I represent, accept and support the Youth Declaration and we join the implementation declaring ourselves Partners for Prosperity. However, we emphasize the need to insert the statement of Food Security and Sovereignty, the central theme of this General Assembly. We urge governments to dialogue with young people in a strategic manner. Young people are developing and implementing solutions that can be replicated, as we saw in recent edition of TIC Bolivia, such as the use of alternative crops and recycling at different levels, which will allow us to be sustainable." Stated Monica in her speech.
The heads of delegations emphasized and recognized the importance of the contributions of young people and other social actors for the design and implementation of public policies, as they "provide a real perspective of what is happening in the hemisphere." They recognized that to strengthening democracy they should work together, having TIC Bolivia as an example of good practices. In the intervention session of heads of delegation, Chile, Colombia and St Kitts and Nevis especially addressed young people.
The Head of the Delegation of Chile distinguished and support the spaces that are being opened for civil society participation in OAS activities, since according to him, are a sign of vitality and commitment of social actors, making them strategic partners to achieve the objectives of the Organization of American States.
"In Cartagena, when we hear the recommendations of young people, they gave us their commitments; therefore, states must also demonstrate their commitment in a concrete way. That is why Chile wanted to take action, by supporting activities of the civil society. This is why we make a concrete manifestation of our support by making a contribution to the fund for civil society participation in OAS activities, we are interested in this process, which contributes to strengthening participation of civil society groups in the organization therefore, Chile respectfully invited Member States to consider contributing to this fund, "said the delegation of Chile.
Similarly, the representative of Colombia noted the participation of social actors of civil society, and stated that this comes from the strengthening of democracy and proposed two main ideas: "Participation with security and rights", and to "promote proper growth to Defeat poverty", explaining them as follows:
"Participation with security and rights", as derived from strengthening the
participation of young people and other social actors to restore communication links between state and civil society.
"Promoting Proper growth to Defeat Poverty", recalling the work of young people in Cartagena, where " they raised the banner against poverty as a central theme of this meeting, the union's commitment to partner brings prosperity today magnificently in Bolivia." Similarly, the ambassador established "Proper growth to defeat poverty" and reiterated that through constructive dialogue and consensus one can build the road to defeat poverty.
Moreover, St Kitts and Nevis congratulated and exalted the participation of youth and the strength of their recommendations. "It is gratifying to know we can count on the contributions of a vigilant and proactive civil society that faces challenges and problems directly." The representative of the delegation affirmed that the recommendations of the youth and civil society in the hemisphere contain as priority poverty reduction.
Meanwhile, the representative of the youth of Bolivia cataloged her involvement as a positive experience with many inputs and good reception from the delegations. "As a representative of young Bolivians in the dialogue, it was a very rewarding and enriching opportunity to share the thoughts and feelings of the young people of Bolivia directly with high-level authorities of the hemisphere, because with their support, we can materialize our ideas ".
The representatives of the OAS Member States welcomed and appreciated these contributions, also reiterated their commitment to take them into account when making significant decisions.
YABT will monitor these and other commitments of young people made at the Sixth Summit of the Americas and the OAS General Assembly.
Download the speech by clicking here.