Brussels, 12 August, 2021/OACPS: International Youth day is observed each year on 12 August. On behalf of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS), the Secretary-General, H.E. Mr Georges Rebelo Pinto CHIKOTI, celebrates the youth across the tri-continental OACPS who continue to shape our communities; with the aim of building a better, fairer, inclusive and more sustainable future.

The Secretary-General welcomes the choice of this year’s theme of “Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation forHuman and Planetary Health”, noting that the youth are the future of food security, and that they remain important actors in the effort to transform food systems to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular SDG 2 on “Zero Hunger”. Furthermore, H.E. Mr Chikoti acknowledges the crucial challenges that must also be addressed to achieve human and planetary wellbeing, including pressing issues of concern to the Members of the OACPS, such as poverty reduction, biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation.

In light of these factors, Secretary-General Chikoti launches a call to place youth at the heart of national policies that address concerns related to food production and consumption in our countries and regions, realizing that the resilience and determination of the youth are critical for the reinvention of our food system processes.

In accordance with the Nairobi Nguvu Ya Pamoja declaration that commits to implementing inclusive and effective policies that create opportunities for personal growth, and to ensure that the right of every young person to social, economic and cultural development is respected, Secretary-General Chikoti reaffirms his support of the youth of the OACPS and beyond. On this day, he also encourages the Members of the OACPS to intensify their efforts to facilitate youth engagement and empowerment, to ensure our Human and Planetary Health.