Warm greetings:

Today we join the rest of the world to commemorate the International Youth Day, and on behalf of the Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum (UYAHF), I am thrilled to share our message and add our voice to the already ongoing conversations about this special day themed:  “Green Skills for Youth: Towards a Sustainable World.”

In today’s rapidly changing world, the importance of a green transition towards an environmentally sustainable and climate-friendly society cannot be understated. As we work towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the development of green skills plays a crucial role in creating a sustainable and resource-efficient world.

Greenskills encompass not only technical knowledge for utilizing green technologies but also the transversal skills that empower individuals to make environmentally sustainable decisions in all aspects of life.

For young people, the development of green skills is even more critical, as they can contribute to the green transition for a longer period of time. In fact,according to the International Labour Organization (ILO), a green transition is expected to create 8.4 million jobs for young people by 2030. These green jobs are integral to preserving and restoring the environment, paving the way for a more sustainable future.

Despite the growing recognition of the importance of green skills, evidence suggests a shortage of such skills among young people. If this trend continues, more than 60 percent of young individuals may lack the necessary skills to thrive in the green economy by 2030. Therefore, it becomes imperative to bridge this skills gap and equip our youth with the knowledge and tools they need to embrace the opportunities presented by the green economy.

At Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum, we understand the significance of green skills for our youth. As part of our commitment to environmental consciousness, we have integrated green practices into our Vine Pads project,emphasizing sustainable menstrual hygiene solutions through producing and encouraging the use of reusable sanitary pads (Vine Pads). We believe that by promoting green skills among young people, we can not only protect the environment but also foster a prosperous future for the generations to come.

As we celebrate International Youth Day, let us join hands to advocate for policies that align environmental and skills development strategies. By working together, we can ensure that young people have access to the necessary resources and training to create a positive impact on our environment and society.

With warm regards,

Joyce Nakato

Executive Director – Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum