Claim for a holistic approach in youth policies

December 11, 2006

Two governmental inputs at the ICNYP-Opening 

The ICNYP 2006 was officially opened – in beloved academic tradition – cum tempore at 9.15 by Ursula HAUBNER, Austrian Federal Minister of Social Security, Generations and Consumer Protection. Haubner called for a change of paradigm in politics towards youth-related question. She outlined a required holistic approach: youth-related topics in the triangular field of policy, research and practice. Due to the variable participants of the conference, ICNYP could, according to Haubner, be a building block for a better society, where youth can take part in society more effectively. 

Mohamed KUTI was the second representative of a government at the opening of the conference. He is head of the relatively new Ministry for Youth Affairs in Kenya. Youth topics used to be taken care of in several different ministries in Kenya before.

It can be seen as a change of paradigm, like Haubner asked for, that the Kenyan officials created a separate Ministry on youth topics.  

According to Mr. Kuti, the Kenyan youth is currently trapped in a vicious circle that needs to break open. High unemployment due to drop-out from the educational system leads to frustration, what can lead to drug abuse, what can lead to either drug abuse and/or early and irresponsible sexual experiences what in turn aggravates the HIV/Aids-problem in Kenya.  The Ministry for Youth Affairs has launched several programmes to stop that tragic development.  

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