Youth debate on Millennium Development Goals progress
Twenty eight students from twelve higher secondary schools participated in a debate programme- Role of Youth in Achieving the MDGs in Nepal, organised in the UN House as part of the global UN Millennium Campaign .
The event was supported by UNDP to promote the Millennium Campaign, a little before the world leaders gathered in New York for the Millennium Summit 2010 to revisit their commitments until 2015.
Seven teams for 7 goals, each comprising 4 students (11-12 grade, 14 boys and 14 girls) put across facts and figures on poverty, education, gender empowerment, child health, maternal health, HIV/AIDS, and environment sustainability.
The students put up powerful discussions challenging the Government on its commitment to meet the goals. The debate held in English was an excellent example of youth engagement on development issues.
A panel of 5 members with representatives from the Constituent Assembly, UN, UNDP, civil society and the media judged the presentations and analytical skills of the students listening to the arguments of the debaters from multiple perspectives - substance, facts, figures, new ideas and creativity.
Mr. Stephane Jaquemet, the acting Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator gave away certificates to all the participants of the debate programme.
In his closing remarks, he highlighted the conscientious efforts made by the Government of Nepal in meeting the Millennium Development Goals despite the challenging times the country is passing through. He expressed happiness to see the involvement of the youth in development issues, especially as 2010 is the "International Year of Youth".
The Minister for Education, Honourable Sarvendra Nath Shukla was the Chief Guest of the event and gave away gold, silver and bronze medals to the first three winning teams.