September 17, 2013 (JUBA) – A youth conference was launched in the South Sudanese capital, Juba, to deliberate on challenges which they face in development, peace-building and social life in the country.
- South Sudanese Youth in Solidarity Conference, Juba, Sept. 16, 2013 (ST)
The five-day event was organised by an organisation called Youth in Solidarity under the umbrella of the Initiatives of Change-South Sudan; a newly registered organisation working to promote peace, reconciliation and unity in diversity in the new country.
Representatives of the youth from the ten states have converged in Juba to participate in the training and deliberations on matters of concern and to recommend to the government their views on how to address them.
Nadi Arop, minister for youth, culture and sports, while officially launching the conference, called on the youth to pursue patriotism and nationalism as well as promote peace in the country.
She urged them to put the country’s interests first and apply their modern knowledge to make a positive impact, vowing that her ministry will support the youth programs.
Addressing the conference, the President of the Initiatives of Change-South Sudan, Angelina Teny, who is also the chairperson of the board of directors, urged the youth to build trust among the youngsters.
Teny further advised on the importance of self-transformation, saying it was important for one to forgive and be forgiven for any wrong doing.
She further explained on her national organisation, which she said replicated a similar international one that has existed for decades around the world and works to transform the society.
“Initiatives of Change is a network of people and programs committed to building trust across the world’s divides. It is a group of people of diverse cultures, nations, beliefs and backgrounds who are committed to transforming society through change in individuals and relationships, starting with their own lives”, she told the youth.
The coordinator for the Youth in Solidarity, James Tongo, said the five-day forum at White Nile Resort hotel will cover the areas of peace building, economic development and social life among the youth.
There will be presentations by various national and international experts through plenary sessions and in-depth discussions.
Tongo explained that the youth gathering also aims to create a central support system for young South Sudanese leaders to address common issues faced in the region as well as encourage transparency and accountability and help create a harmonious nation.
The interactions, he said, will also help to break the barriers of tribalism and promote networking and outreaches internally and externally.
The conference was also in preparation for the next East African Youth Conference scheduled to convene in Burundi in February 2014.