Long-Term Strategy on the Engagement and Involvement of Young People in Environmental Issues

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In February 2003, the Governing Council of UNEP adopted a long-term strategy for engaging young people in environmental activities and in the work of UNEP. The strategy was entitled the Tunza Youth Strategy. The word “TUNZA” means “to treat with care or affection” in Kiswahili (a sub-regional language of Eastern Africa). The overall Tunza Concept, therefore, is built around this theme. It is an initiative that is meant to develop activities in the areas of capacity building, environmental awareness, and information exchange, with a vision to foster a generation of environmentally conscious citizens, capable of positive action. Important by-products of this strategy include the annual Tunza International Youth Conference, Tunza Advisory Council and a quarterly Tunza magazine. The proposed second strategy has been developed in line with the recommendations from the midterm independent evaluation of the first strategy released in 2006, in addition to the expression of interest by a number of Governments at the ninth special session of the Council/Forum, held in Dubai in February 2006, during the discussions of the mid-term review. The proposed second strategy has received inputs from children and young people’s focal points in UNEP divisions and regional offices, partner children and young people’s organizations, the Tunza Youth Advisory Council and the Tunza Junior Board, participants in the 2008 Tunza International Children’s Conference (Stavanger, Norway) and from children and young people and their organizations. It has been structured and aligned to the six cross-cutting priorities as identified in the medium-term strategy for the period 2010-2013.

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