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INFORMATION DEFICIENCY: The fundamental factor that hinders youth participation in African region Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Erick Ochieng Otieno, Kenya Feb 10, 2007
Education , Technology   Opinions


INFORMATION DEFICIENCY: The fundamental factor that hinders youth participation in African region Ask any of the youth in many parts of Kenya what they know of the many organizations that have been registered with the aims and objectives of helping the youth and what you will hear mostly is that those are organizations to look for money. One may be forgiven to think in the same line with these youths.
It has been observed that many governmental and non-governmental organizations are emerging at such a high number yet the youth are still left at the same stagnant positions they were a decade ago. It is worth noting that quite a little has been done with regards to solving the youth problems such as fighting for the rights to employment, education and many others. However, in the line of information dissemination to the youth has been quite a slag.
Many youth still remain in the dark on which of these organizations are supposed to fight for them as they claim in the many proposals they write to their donors. With no knowledge at all on these issues, the youth are continuously being used by the politicians on the one hand and the human rights activists at their behest. This is so prevalent especially in the rural areas where the youth are mostly illiterate and are not exposed to the day to day events all over the world.
Communication gadgets have not done any justice to them either. With the world continuing to be viewed as the Global Village, the youth in these areas are in islands of their own. The Information Communication and Technology tools such as the internet are just another planet faraway.
My experience has shown me that websites such as the Taking It Global and other youth forums are a very spot to catch the attentions of many youth with a vision. This unfortunately can not happen if we as the youth are not given the opportunity to access the internet and interact with the Global audiences.
This came very clear to me just recently when I was trying to know how many know about such websites as the www.takingitglobal.org , www.comminit.org and many other website for global youth forum and everyone was perplexed. This just goes to show how much as the youth especially from the third world countries need to do to ensure that our fellows are well informed and are at par with the global trend. This, I must admit, cannot happen if the internet is a world apart from most of us and if they are there, then the costs are very high for a common man to afford.
The way forward is to enable the youth get to this information by establishing initiatives that will enable them access the internet even if it means half an hour for free if possible. This will help them lose the fear that the internet is just for the developed and enable them see what the sites such as this of the TIG is able to do for them. These should be a challenge to all the governments of Africa and other like-minded nongovernmental organizations that have real youth agenda at their hearts to take up the initiatives and open the world for the youths especially those at the remotest of places. In the process, I believe that many problems such as insecurities will have been half solved.



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Erick Ochieng Otieno

I was a student from Egerton University. I pursued a course leading to a BSc in Applied Aquatic Sciences. I believe that through writing, one can relieve a lot from the heart. Inspiration came from hearing and reading. Whoever said that you have to be an old one to communicate issues of policies, did not consider that even a newborn communicates through its own way, "crying". I would like to communicate to the world all my thoughts; However minor they are, I believe they will go a great length to straighten or strengthen a policy or two somewhere and I shall have contributed to the well being of the world. How noble that is, it is for my worthy readers to let me know. So what do you think? Tell me anytime. Bye and have a nice reading.
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