How it works
- Read the articles
- Check out the stories, quizzes and reflections
- Train yourself with the accompanying skills
- Take action!
“No one is born a good citizen; no nation is born a democracy. Rather, both are processes that continue to evolve over a lifetime. Young people must be included from birth. A society that cuts itself off from its youth severs its lifeline; it is condemned to bleed to death.” —Kofi Annan (former Secretary-General of the United Nations)
You have the fundamental right to participate and access information relating to decision-making processes that affect your life and well-being. Meaningful Youth Participation (MYP) is a right of all young people according to the Convention of the Rights of the Child.
MYP means that young people can participate on equal terms with adults, or work independently, in organizations and in all stages of decision-making: from identifying a problem or opportunity, to the development of a program or policy, to the implementation, evaluation and campaigns concerning young people. But for that to happen, mechanisms must be in place that allow young people to have an active role, in which their voice is heard and respected. If the participation of young people is truly meaningful, it benefits the young people, any program, policy or organisation and society as a whole.
YOU(TH) can and should be involved on different levels for the decision-making process. This can be on a local level, for example within your family, at school, within your community or at work. This can also happen on a regional or national level, for example in a national youth council, or on an international level.
You not only have the fundamental right to meaningfully participate, there is also a great advantage of your involvement. If your voice is heard, programs and policies can be adapted to reflect the actual needs of young people and can become more effective.
Meaningful youth participation also empowers you to become a leader! Ultimately MYP contributes also to more confident, skilled, connected and empowered young people who are active agents of change in their communities.
The Flower of Participation (developed by CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality in support with YouAct), can be a useful tool for you to better understand meaningful youth participation and the different degrees of participation.