There are an estimated 2.3 million people today between the ages of 13 and 19 in Hong Kong/Greater Bay area, which is the largest generation of youth in human history. Their numbers are expected to grow — in the Decade of Action, about 25 million young people are projected to turn 18 years old in the region.
Connected to each other like never before, young people increasingly contribute to innovative solutions, driving social progress and inspiring political initiatives. They are agents of change, mobilizing to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to improve the lives of people and the health of the planet.
From zero plastic, sustainable food and fashion to micro-finance, UNITAR Youth Ambassadors (the “Ambassadors”), aged 13 -19 years old, can come from many different backgrounds, represent every segment of society, and inspire all of us to achieve the goals. Ambassadors are recognized for their leadership and contribution to a more sustainable world, no matter where they come from.
They will come together as a community to support efforts to engage young people in the realization of the SDGs both through strategic opportunities with the UN and through their existing initiatives, platforms and networks.
one of UNITAR’s engagement initiatives in Asia Pacific to advance Agenda 2030, the UNITAR Youth Ambassador Programme provides an opportunity to learn about the United Nations system as well as careers in diplomacy and international affairs through participation in UNITAR events. The Programme will select approximately twenty students from high schools in Hong Kong to learn more about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and connect globally with international experts in different fields.
This Programme for the UNITAR Youth Ambassador Programme – Asia Pacific, to be launched in 2021, aims not only to deepen the students’ understanding of current global issues and solutions such as UN commitments and the SDGs but also to equip them with the skills required to work internationally in the future.
The centerpiece for each student / student group is to develop and further a sustainable project and prepare their presentation to UNITAR in the final weeks of the program. Within the 10-week program, there will be a focus in three camps: i) innovation, i) entrepreneurship and project development and ii) collaboration, advice, and lectures from peers, academics and international experts iii) exposure to technological ideas and professionals in frontier technologies as relevant to sustainable scalability.
The 10-week program is designed to deliver a Pilot Programme with a view to provide the widest impact, multiplier effect, and long-term success for the beneficiaries.
Technology and its Innovation will play a core role in facilitation of know-how and knowledge sharing between the Ambassadors themselves, as well as the Ambassadors with external experts and advisors.
Hybrid Approach of Online and Offline Activities
With ITS online infrastructure, flexibility given the pandemic uncertainty is essential. We will have plans for in-person lectures on ITS’ campus, but will have the ability to take contingencies to run everything online, and will build in an online component to accommodate all planned sessions with international resource people.
The majority of the project development will take place online. Channels of collaboration will be opened for students between the Saturdays. Given the program is 10-weeks long, it is not expected that teams will have finished solutions by the end of the program but rather the aim is for them to have a refined idea and suitable prototype that can be presented, and to be tested and validated by other stakeholders. Should it be possible, in-person meetings and presentations will be accommodated.
The Programme will take advantage of the existing online content related to SDG 4 and 13 curated by UNITAR (and translate as necessary to English), and include them where it most strategically fit based on the 10-week Pilot Programme.