Nairobi, November, 2017 – Youth, diplomats and high profile public figures came to the United Nations Office of Nairobi today to attend the first session of Young African Think’rs (YAT) Convention.
Hosted by UN-Habitat, the Young African Think’rs Convention will run for three days of intense brainstorming where African youth will generate sustainable solutions to foster Africa‟s development.
Wangu Mwenda, Project Designer for the Billion Startups project, gave opening remarks to start the session pointing out that “It is a critical time that governments and organizations come out to jointly support the youth as problem solvers for tomorrow’s issues toward the transformation of Africa.”
Businessman and Philanthropist Dr. Manu Chandaria said that the coming together for youth as urban thinkers was a reminder that “Young people have the energy and are very able to get Africa organized.”
Speaking during the opening of the convention, Dr. Manu Chandaria challenged hundreds of youth saying, “It is an economic challenge for youth to sit at home thinking about issues affecting their continent, and doing nothing about it! Youth must open up their minds to find new solutions that work to solve current urbanization issues”
Christine Musisi, Director for External Relations, UN-Habitat spoke to the youth through a shared conference video emphasizing on the need for youth to take charge on urbanization, “Africa is the fastest urbanizing continent globally, yet its urbanization is unplanned.”
“The creativity, energy and innovation of Africa’s youth shall be the driving force behind the continent’s political, social, cultural and economic transformation.”– Agenda 2063/ Aspiration 6:58
The session went on to include discussions with youth groups on how to utilize the untapped creativity of Africa youth to fuel the on-going transformation and realize the anticipated urbanization in Africa.
Meanwhile the Youth as Peace builders Forum themed at UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial taking place in Vancouver enters day two today with high level representative staff of UN-Habitat.