2023 Youth Engagement Forum

The NDC Partnership convened its third annual NDC Partnership Youth Engagement Forum (YEF) to highlight and promote opportunities and lessons learned in strengthening youth engagement across the Partnership's work. The YEF is more than a forum — it is a catalyst for change! Insights and outcomes from the YEF are used to inform implementation of the Partnership’s Youth Engagement Plan, which seeks to better incorporate youth needs and engagement opportunities into NDC implementation efforts around the world. Our 2021 and 2022 Youth Engagement Forums brought together more than 700 participants from 81 countries, and our collective impact is growing every year.

The 2023 Youth Engagement Forum’s theme was "Shaping Our Future" and aimed to empower young people to engage in long-term climate action by building young leaders’ capacity, promoting dialogue on youth-focused NDC planning and finance needs, and sharing best practices for youth engagement across the Partnership. YEF 2023 offered concrete examples of how to bring youth into long-term strategy decisions with a focus on financing and investment planning that take youth considerations into account. Shaping our future requires action on many levels. YEF 2023 hosted discussions on youth leadership, enabling environments for youth engagement in climate action, innovation for long-term climate action, and so much more. See below for the full list of sessions and speakers.

2023 Youth Engagement Forum Sessions

Shaping Our Future: Session A - English:
  • Thursday July 6 | 8:00 a.m. EDT (15:00 Kenya)
Plenary Session Speakers
  • Mr. Jevanic Henry, Alliance of Small Islands States (AOSIS) Fellow, Permanent Mission of Saint Lucia to the UN| UN Secretary General Youth Adviser on Climate Change 
  • Ms. Giulia Jacovella, Youth Empowerment and Climate Analyst, UNDP 
  • Ms. Antoinette E. Moleele, Advocacy and Capacity Development Consultant, Hendylite Consultancy for Global Sustainability, University of Maryland  
  • Mr. Ibrahim Muhammad S., Early Career Scholar for an Inclusive Stocktake Center (ECSIS)
  • Mr. Mohamed Okash, Director, ICE Institute 
  • Ms. Hajar Yagkoubi, The Netherlands 
  • Ms. Jeannette Larue, Director General, Public Education and Community Outreach Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Climate Change & Environment, Seychelles 
  • Mr. Simon Ball, NDC Partnership UK Programme Manager, Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, United Kingdom 
Teach-In Sessions:
  • Commonwealth - Building Blocks for Securing Climate Finance: Young people should be empowered to help shape and accelerate climate action. This teach-in session provided an understanding of the climate finance landscape and the access requirements of funding institutions. It focused on the use of the problem tree analysis tool used to design climate proposals that meet the specific needs of young people while satisfying funding institution demands. 
  • FAO - Attracting finance in agriculture: key tools and resources for successful proposals and projects: This session focused on providing youth with key principles, tools and information sources to attract investments for projects contributing to climate change adaptation and mitigation in the AFOLU sectors. Specifically, the three following requirements were unraveled: (1) ensuring effective framing, (2) ensuring alignment with national efforts, and (3) building strong monitoring and reporting frameworks. 
  • SLOCAT - Accelerating Sustainable Transport: Empowering African Youth for Climate Action: This teach-in session was facilitated by the SLOCAT-VREF Young Leaders in Sustainable Transport, a leadership group consisting of young scholars and professionals working on implementing sustainable transport in Africa. They discussed with participants challenges and key solutions on sustainable, low carbon transport in the region and identify how to raise ambition on transport in climate strategies. 
  • Student Energy - Entering the Energy Transition Labour Market: Informed by Student Energy’s Energy Transition Skills Project, and the Youth Impact Framework, this workshop provided context into: (1) The existing gap between what is most important to young people when looking for employment; (2) the barriers in accessing jobs that support the energy transition; (3) the barriers young entrepreneurs in the climate and energy sector face to scaling their businesses and communicating their impact. It uncovered tangible solutions and opportunities for young people to increase their knowledge of the Energy Transition labor market, and how to communicate their impact to scale their contributions to the energy transition labor market. 
  • YOUNGO - Youth Engagement in NDCs: From Local to Global Perspectives: This session showcased the role of the NDCs Working Group of YOUNGO in strengthening youth engagement at the local level and influencing high-level decision-making processes. Participants learned the opportunities for youth involvement and hear inspiring stories highlighting how youth-led climate innovations are making tangible contributions towards achieving the NDCs targets and contributing to the Global Stocktake process. 
Shaping Our Future: Session B – English:
  • Wednesday July 12 | 22:00 EDT (Thursday July 13 | 09:00 Indonesia) 
Plenary Session Speakers:
  • Ms. Ariane Pevide, Director, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG)
  • Ms. Davila Talemaimaleya, Media and Communications Officer for iTaukei Women in Conservation; Secretary of the Alliance for Future Generations in Fiji  
  • Mrs. Enkhee Sainbuyan, Climate Change Officer, Ministry of Environment and Tourism, Mongolia 
  • Ms. Hailey Campbell, Co-Executive Director, Care About Climate 
  • Mr. Pablo Vieira, NDC Partnership Global Director 
  • Mr. Zagy Yakana Berian, Founder, Society of Renewable Energy 
Teach-In Sessions:
  • 350 Pacific - Technical Teach-in on Organizing Effective Campaigns: 350 Pacific is a youth-led grassroots network working with communities to fight climate change from the Pacific Islands and diaspora. Organizing and Campaigning with the Pacific Climate Warriors provided an insight to a variety of tools used to help organize and mobilize communities to take action.  
  • UNICEF - Evidence-informed NDCs for and with children and young people: The climate crisis is a child rights crisis. UNICEF is committed to ensuring that climate change policies and strategies center children and youth. This teach-in session focused on UNICEF’s new NDCs for every child data visualization platform, exploring how the website can serve as a resource to support youth advocates in engaging on climate policy. 
  • YOUNGO - Youth Engagement in NDCs: From Local to Global Perspectives: This session showcased the role of the NDCs Working Group of YOUNGO in strengthening youth engagement at the local level and influencing high-level decision-making processes. Participants learned the opportunities for youth involvement and hear inspiring stories highlighting how youth-led climate innovations are making tangible contributions towards achieving the NDCs targets and contributing to the Global Stocktake process. 
Shaping Our Future: Session C – French:
  • Thursday July 20 | 8:00 EDT (13:00 Benin)
Plenary Session Speakers:
  • Ms. Beatrice Cyiza, Director General of Environment and Climate Change at the Ministry of Environment in Rwanda 
  • Mr. Issa Bado, Spécialiste de Programme, Négociations internationales environnement et développement durable, Institut de la Francophonie pour le développement durable (IFDD)  
  • Ms. Falmata Mahamat Kana Bady, Chargée de communication, International Student Environmental Coalition 
  • Mr. Rony Francillon, Co-fondateur d'Aquaiti, Jeune activiste pour le climat 
  • Mrs. Osnia Gbankoto, Juriste, Spécialiste des droits humains 
  • Mr. Mohamed Zmerli, Point Focal national de la Convention Cadre des Nations unies sur les changements climatiques, Tunisia 
Teach-In Sessions:
  • Agricultural Expertise Center - Rôle des jeunes dans la mise en œuvre des CDN et de l'action pour le climat: Cette session explorera l'engagement et la contribution des jeunes à la mise en œuvre des CDN dans leurs pays, partagera les priorités et les défis spécifiques à chaque pays, et identifiera les goulets d'étranglement politiques à l'engagement des jeunes. 
  • IFDD - Accès à la finance climat par les acteurs de terrain francophones : Défis et opportunités: L’urgence d’agir rapidement face aux changements climatiques fait de la mobilisation de la finance climat un des plus défis de nombreux pays francophones qui souhaitent relever leurs efforts d’atténuation et d’adaptation. De nombreux obstacles réduisent l’accès à la finance climat des acteurs francophones. La session soulignera les défis pour les pays francophones, décryptera une récente étude sur le sujet et relèvera des pistes de solutions. 
  • UNITAR - Discussions informelles avec les champions de l'action climatique de l’UN CC:Learn: L'action climatique menée par les jeunes ouvre la voie à des changements sociétaux plus larges. Ces discussions « au coin du feu » vous donneront l'occasion d'apprendre et d'échanger avec de jeunes acteurs du changement, qui ont été sélectionnés comme champions dans le cadre du programme UN CC:Learn en raison de leur travail exceptionnel dans les domaines de la sensibilisation et de l'action climatique. Rejoignez-nous pour vous inspirer de leurs histoires ! Au cours de cette séance, échangez avec Axelle Vera du Cameroun. 
Shaping Our Future: Session D – Spanish: 
  • Thursday July 27 | 12:00 EDT (11:00 Peru)
Plenary Session Speakers:
  • Ms. Vilma Alfú, Jefa del departamento de acción climática de la Dirección de Cambio Climático, Ministerio de Ambiente, Panama 
  • Ms. Sara Cognuck González, Consultora Independiente en Gestión de Recursos Naturales, Costa Rica  
  • Mr. Arturo Jiménez, Punto Focal Justicia Climática, Ministerio de Ambiente y Desarrollo Sostenible, Colombia 
  • Ms. Joice Mendez, Member of UN Secretary-General Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change 
  • Mr. Pablo Vieira, NDC Partnership Global Director
Teach-In Sessions:
  • Care About Climate - Empoderando a los jóvenes a ser líderes en la justicia climática: La importancia de la participación de los jóvenes en las juntas de COP y los NDC: Los jóvenes están a la vanguardia de la crisis climática. Los políticos y líderes deben reconocer la fortaleza, resiliencia y experiencia de los jóvenes para empoderarlos como los líderes que son y que serán en el futuro. Esta sesión fue centrada en aprovechar el conocimiento de los jóvenes sobre los NDC de sus países y la importancia de su rol y participación en conferencias climáticas de alto nivel (como, los SB y el COP). 
  • Ministerio de Ambiente y Desarrollo Sostenible, Colombia - El papel de los jóvenes en la justicia climática: En un contexto de crisis climática y de llamamiento urgente de la ciencia a la acción por el clima, y teniendo en cuenta los impactos diferenciales del cambio climático en diversas poblaciones y su incidencia en el pleno disfrute de los derechos humanos y la consecución del desarrollo sostenible, ¿Cuáles deberían ser algunos elementos clave para la aportación y la perspectiva de los jóvenes a la Justicia Climática? 
  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) - [English only] On Equal Terms: Young Experts’ Insights in Making the NDC Process Youth-Friendly: Design and implementation of the NDCs often does not include the voices of young people from all backgrounds and from the very beginning. The UNDP prepared a comprehensive checklist called “On Equal Terms” to help decisionmakers reverse that. This session provided its key insights and brought young professionals with a track record of success in the NDC process into the conversation. 
  • UNITAR - Charlas con los campeones de la acción climática de UN CC:Learn: La acción por el clima liderada por los jóvenes está allanando el camino para cambios sociales más amplios. Estas charlas nos brindaron la oportunidad de aprender e intercambiar ideas con jóvenes promotores del cambio, que han sido seleccionados como Campeones de UN CC:Learn por su destacada labor en los ámbitos de la sensibilización y la acción contra el cambio climático. En esta sesión, nos escuchamos con Karel Miranda, de Panamá. 
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