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MDG Contest: Youth's contribution to nation development Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by foy franklin, Cameroon May 2, 2005
Child & Youth Rights   Opinions
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The youth of today have witnessed very hard times and sometimes find themselves hopeless and despaired about the future. Most times they enlist some sort of desideratum in them because of the current ways in which events unfold. This is manly due to certain reasons like inefficient guidance and counseling of youth.

  • Child Labor

  • Unemployment

  • Sufficiency and insufficiency of educational infrastructure

  • Moral Decadence

  • Diseases

  • Non engagement in state activities

  • Political instability

  • Bribery and corruption

  • Discrimination on and amongst youth.

All the aforementioned points have a preponderant role to play on the youth. They influence their lives and to a greater extent their wellbeing. In order to seek ways at which the welfare of yout can be improved we have to first of all have a comprehensive view of their problems before seeking solutions to them. To start with we will begin with the aforementioned points in that chronology.

1. Inefficient guidance and counseling of youth
Guidance and counseling is a means by which parents and guidance counselors mostly in schools could help youth in building a foundation of their future career and on societal issues. But this has never been the case since most parents have tend to be dictators on their children’s future career and hence most youth have been in constant crises with their parents. This has tend for the most part to mislead the youth and has also frustrated most who find themselves in fields not of their choice and hence having no incentive to grow and progress within the field.

As a remedy to this situation seminars and workshops could be organized to educate parents on how to help them to choose the career of their children if they have to or to help identify the career of their children and discuss it with their children. It should also be based on ways of enhancing parent - child relationships.

For example in places like Africa toys could be used by parents to identify the points of interest of kids which will then help identify their future careers.

Mostly in very religious countries the church has a great role to play in guiding and counseling youth on most societal ills like prostitution, drug addiction, theft and on crime wave as a whole.
Furthermore, the reinforcement of guidance and counseling in schools and other institutions will help youth to get a good career where they are dedicated and hence they will be able to grow and progress in such fields.

2. Child labor
Child labor as the name implies has been a rapidly growing phenomenon over the years. It is simply any way or activity by which the mental, physical and social development of under-aged children could be impaired. It varies from country to country and from rural to urban areas with the main reason being that of poverty. Here children are being subjected to jobs like farming, being house helps, working in quarries and mines, prostitution, drug addiction just to name but a few. Most people are of the motion that child labor be discouraged because it only helps to damage the children and makes their future obscured since they work long hours with little reward and because it actually adds nothing to their well-being.

To this effect the creation of organizations both at the national and international level to assist the International Labour Organization (ILO) will be of great help. They will be able to survey nationally, at the rural and urban level, child labor practices and also child trafficking. They would also do it at the international level.

Secondly, sensitization campaigns both at the rural and urban levels will be of great help since at the rural level especially parents are the ones who willingly surrender their children to these child traffickers after being convinced of the betterment of their children’s positions in cities and how they will be able to send back home money of which the story is not always true. Individuals are also called upon to be vigilant and report any suspects on this issue to the appropriate quarters.

Thirdly, the sensitization or the putting on the alert of policemen at major checkpoints and at international boundaries will do a great contribution towards the fight against child labor.

Fourthly, severe judicial measures should be laid down against defaulters to secure people from indulging in child trafficking and child labor.

Finally, since the major cause of child labor is due to poverty, most governments should adopt various measures to combat poverty. These measures are discussed under unemployment.

2. Unemployment
Unemployment could be regarded as a period when people are temporarily or permanently having no jobs or work to do. This is one of the major problems faced by youth today. Without employment most youth will be unable to carter for their needs and even for those who are directly or indirectly dependent on them. Due to unemployment youth in their idleness have resorted to a lot of negative activities, which have neither been beneficial to them nor to their countries. Unemployment especially among youth could be curbed by the sensitization of youth on self-employment. This could be in terms of workshops, seminars, rallies, campaigns just to name but a few.

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Kids Can Make A Difference (KIDS)
neil jay wollman | Sep 6th, 2009
Kids Can Make A Difference (KIDS) is an innovative educational program for middle school and high school students. It helps them understand the root causes of hunger and poverty and how they as individuals can take action. KIDS has three major components: ►Teachers’ Guide: Finding Solutions To Hunger: Kids Can Make A Difference has provided over 5,000 classrooms, religious schools, after school programs and homeschoolers with tools to help young people to understand the causes of poverty and become informed and effective citizens, realizing their own capacity to change the world. Students learn about the pain of hunger; the importance of food; the inequality of its distribution; and the links between poverty, hunger, joblessness, and homelessness. They are then given the skills to take what they have learned into their communities. ►Website: The KIDS web site is rated one of the top 20 websites for educators by Educational World. The site provides news, a hunger quiz, hunger facts, suggested books, back issues of the newsletter, the table of contents, sample lessons, program notes from the teacher guide; and ►Newsletter: The three yearly issues highlight current hunger issues, showcase student initiatives, and feature teachers' experiences teaching the KIDS program and students' experiences making a difference in their community and world. Contact KIDS at: Larry Levine, Co-Founder KIDS, 1 Borodell Avenue Mystic, CT 06355 (860) 245-3620; (860) 245-3651 FAX kids@kidscanmakeadifference.org; www.kidscanmakeadifference.org KIDS is a project of WHY (World Hunger Year), a leading advocate for community based solutions to hunger and poverty.

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