Youth Bridge Foundation (YBF), a non-governmental organisation has launched the 10th African Youth and Governance Conference (AYGC) in Accra at the La Palm Royal Beach Hotel.
The foundation is focused on creating supportive platforms to challenge the creativity of the Youth and to make available critical information and resources needed for total development.
Under the Conference theme “MOBILIZING AFRICA’S YOUTH TO BUILD A CONTINENT BEYOND AID”, youth from at least 20 African Countries, 30 Diaspora youth and 7 coaches from Canada will seek to advance this agenda with enthusiasm.
The conference scheduled for La Palm Royal Beach from August 5-12, 2018 will have resource persons drawn from Cornell, Dalhousie and McMaster Universities joining other Ghanaian resource persons.
The theme emphasizes the critical need to pool the resources of young people to transform the continent and strive towards Africa’s aspirations ‘beyond aid’.
AYGC 2018 is the convergence of a 4-tier transformational leadership program for leadership grooming, mentorship, community impact, and networking for African and Diaspora youth.
The conference which is targeted at creating the platform for African youth to critically analyse policy documents and discuss issues affecting the development of the continent has been in existence since 2009.
The Executive Director of the foundation, Mr. Seth Oteng said it is time to empower the African youth.
“Africa has gotten to the point where it critically needs to pool resources of young people to transform the continent and strive towards its aspirations beyond aid. We have a lot of resources and untapped potentials waiting to emerge” he said, adding, “with a youthful population we have no choice than to harness youth potential through education to tap into these talents of youth both in Ghana and the diaspora.”
Madam Nadia Adongo Musah, the Deputy Director in charge of Diaspora Affairs at the Office of the President said Diasporas youth have extensive knowledge and Ghana needs to mobilize her citizens abroad to share and start innovative projects in the country.
“The office through the Diaspora Internship Programme harnesses the talents of the youth abroad by placing them in local Ghanaian companies where they assist for mutual benefits,” she said.
She added that such platforms are useful in connecting 2nd and 3rd generation Diasporas to Africa to preserve their link to the continent.
Dr. Kojo Asante, the Advocacy Director of CDD-Ghana, said the conference remains relevant to Ghana and Africa which would give hope, progress, and an innovative knowledge to participants as well as fulfil their dreams.
Julio De Medeiros (ESQ), board member of YBF in his remarks observed that media houses today in our part of the world have youthful staff and thus tasked them to embrace the conference theme and advance the agenda of youth inclusion in building Ghana and African beyond aid. He also applauded partners of the conference for their support over the years highlighting the importance of such partnership to youth development especially MTN Foundation and Ghana Tourism Authority.
AYGC alumni shared their experiences and encouraged the youth to take advantage of such leadership grooming programmes.
‘AYGC is a leadership forum that gives one the opportunity to engage with peers, mentors and decision makers both at the national and global level” said Ms. Princess Sekyere, an Alumni of AYGC and President of the 10th AYGC session.
She added that her leadership skills and objective policy analysis have been greatly improved her international exposure, citing the opportunity to make a Statement at the 62nd session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW62) at the United Nations.
Mr Benjamin Larbi, who is also an Alumni expressed how AYGC had prepared him to excel in his endeavours and engaging with corporate leaders in 18 countries of the world.
YBF, initiator and convener of the annual leadership grooming programme, is a Non-Governmental youth-focused organization accredited by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Special Consultative Status. As a youth-focused educational organization, it has the goal of bridging the gaps of the youth for positive youth development.