International Youth Day is a great opportunity for the international community to shine a light on the needs of young people, and to celebrate their contributions and skills as indispensable partners in building our societies.
Experiences and definitions of youth vary significantly between countries and regions, which is why “youth” is often a fluid category. At TeenSmart, we work with three age groups: preteens (10-13 years old), teens (14-17), and young adults (18-24).
Two of the most significant problems for youth during the pandemic are school exclusion and unemployment. The pandemic had a direct impact on education, accelerating the adoption of technology and creating a state of constant transformation, full of uncertainty. This left us with the enormous challenge of ensuring digital inclusion as a basic right, and of motivating and retaining young people in the educational space.
When it comes to post-COVID unemployment, two sectors were the most affected: women, and young people aged 15 to 24. In the latter group, unemployment stands at 43.8% in Latin America (Inter-American Development Bank, 2021).
At TeenSmart International, every day is Youth Day! Aware of our role as a source of attentive listening, information, and support for this population, we launched our campaign “You Are Not Alone” in 2020, and in 2021, “I Am Ready”. Both initiatives have micro-learning sequences in which—through infographics, images and videos that are accompanied by cues to action—young people can strengthen their emotional and physical health, boost their ability to learn, discover their learning styles, and understand the importance of staying in school. We’ve also incorporated youth entrepreneurship messages and training to help young people who are starting a job search.
What’s more, we are now drawing young people to our website through a social media campaign, thanks to a generous donation that’s allowing us to scale up our services. Share this campaign on your networks!
Join our celebration!
- Recommend the free services of jovensalud.net
- Start conversations with the young people in your life. What worries them? What interests them? How do they want to engage with the world around them?
- From your personal and professional circle of influence, provide opportunities to young people at work. Serve as a mentor for new generations.
- Talk to other adults about this topic. Many young people face age discrimination.
- Write to decision-makers—such as the leaders of your local institutions focused on youth and education—regarding challenges faced by young people in their daily lives, and potential solutions.
Embrace your youth! Take care of your health! Visit JovenSalud
Adriana Gómez Gómez
Executive Director, TeenSmart Internacional