We promote meaningful participation of young people in development so that policies and programs respond to the best interest of young people.
Young people individually are diverse right holders, and meaningful youth participation (MYP) is a right of all young people by the convention of the right of the child. MYP means that young people can participate on equal terms with adults, or work independently, in organization in all stages of programing and policy- Making implementations, monitoring and evaluation designs. But for this to happen mechanisms must be in place that allows young people to have an active role, in which their voice is heard and respected. If participation of young people is truly meaningful, it benefits young people the program, policy or organization and society.
Why is meaningful youth participation important?
There are many reasons to support MYP. First and foremost, young people have a fundamental right to meaningfully participate, which we at TaYA believe is in itself reason enough to support MYP.
MYP is a central principle of youth development. Young people are agents of their own development. Youth are not mere passive recipients of external influences; instead they are actively involved in shaping their development by interacting with the people and opportunities made available within their environments. Through youth engagement, communities can do a better job of creating the services, opportunities, and supports that young people need to develop in healthy ways. Youth engagement offers community leaders the expertise and partnership of young people, helping adults fully understand what it is like to grow up in a rapidly changing world. From a political point of view, youth engagement is important because young people deserve the right to represent their own interests. Youth civic engagement is also critically important to prepare young people to be active citizens in a democracy.
Beyond this there is a clear evidence that MYP:
- Benefit society in general in general
- Has appositive effect on young people’s development
- Strengthen organizational capacity
Is key to achieving (SRHR) program outcomes