Washington DC, October 28, 2014 – Last night, the Young Americas Business Trust (YABT) in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Panama officially announced the process of the IV Young Americas Forum. In this occasion, more than 70 young people, including government representatives and YABT partners attended this event.
During the official announcement of the IV Young Americas Forum (YAF), that took place in the OAS Headquarters in Washington D.C., Assistant Secretary General H.E. Albert Ramdin; Viceminister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Panama Luis Miguel Hincapié; Secretary for External Relations H.E. Alfonso Quiñónez; and Executive Secretary for Integral Development Sherry Tross; took part in the ceremony and showed their support by highlighting the importance of the YAF in the process of the VII Summit of the Americas. Additionally, YABT screened a video that explained how young leaders can participate in the YAF.
The YAF is the official process that enables the youth to play a role in the Summit of the America by expressing their recommendations, suggestions, and actions to their public officials and policy makers responsible for regional public policy. In doing, youth contribute actively in the definition of priorities and mandates in the Western Hemisphere. The YAF will be held from in April 6-8, 2015, in Panama City, Panama, prior to the VII Summit of the Americas.
This year, YABT celebrate the 10th anniversary since the I YAF, held in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Since then, YABT has multiplied its efforts and commitments to work for the youth in the Hemisphere to connect them with regional leaders in the VII Summit of the Americas. The presence of young people as social actors in the process of the Summit is a testimony of what has been accomplished in the past 10 years in the Argentina Forum (2005), Trinidad & Tobago Forum (2009), and Colombia Forum (2012). In addition to the “Declaration of the Young Americas Forum”, young people have undertaken concrete actions in relation to the sub-themes of the Summit.
Through the IV YAF, young people will have the opportunity to analyze, work, and discuss the youth challenges in order to come up with viable and sustainable solutions and new perspectives that contribute to the strengthening of democracy in our countries. Thanks to the Talent and Innovation Competition (TIC Americas 2015), young people will be able to showcase their solutions and initiatives to problems in their communities to their government representatives.
Another clear sign of the importance of this Forum the main role played by youth over the past 10 years. Young people are the ones who organize the Hemispheric, national and local dialogues that turn into declarations. The dialogues are continuous, dynamic, and transcend the temporality of the Forum because they are its essence.
The work carried out by youth is larger than theory and manifests itself in concrete actions. After the previous Young Americas Forum celebrated in Cartagena in 2012, four hemispheric dialogues were developed in different Member States of the OAS: Bolivia in June of 2012, Guatemala in June 2013, United States in November 2013, and Paraguay in June 2014.
Now it is your turn to make the change, register your action plan and/or dialogue proposal or be a part of the youth network of the Young Americas Forum at http://yabt.net/foro/.