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Fostering Inclusive Climate Finance at the 2022 Youth Engagement Forum

The NDC Partnership hosted its second annual Youth Engagement Forum this July with three regional sessions covering Africa, the Middle East and Europe, Asia and the Pacific, and the Americas and the Caribbean. The event brought together NDC Partnership members, partners, and youth representatives from groups and organizations around the world to foster dialogue on the issue of inclusive climate finance and provide greater pathways for youth participation.

NDC Partnership Co-Chairs, Member of Parliament and COP President The Right Honorable Alok Sharma and Senator the Honorable Matthew Samuda of Jamaica, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, opened the Forum remarking on the importance of working with youth to advance collective climate action.

"Young people were at the heart of so much of what we achieved at COP26,” said Member of Parliament and COP President Sharma. “The collective call to action of young delegates pushed parties forward, and through NDC Partnership support, young people were directly engaged in NDC enhancement."  

"The Partnership has convened this group of young people to ensure that as we tackle the issue of climate change, youth are not just a part of the solution, but active in crafting the way forward,” added Minister Samuda.

Across the three regional sessions, 360 participants from 78 countries attended YEF, including twenty speakers representing governments, the private sector, and civil society from Argentina, the Bahamas, Ghana, Indonesia, Jamaica, Mongolia, Nepal, Paraguay, Peru, Tunisia, Uganda, the United Kingdom, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe. This dynamic group of speakers led and moderated robust discussions that called for resources tailored to youth experiences, training and upskilling opportunities, and more meaningful participation in climate finance decision-making.  

“We have learned that there is great innovation happening, a great amount of energy and passion that young people are bringing to this work if only they are given the space to lead and have influence,” noted Ms. Diksha Bijlani, Local Stakeholder Engagement Specialist at Climate Investment Funds. Mr. Brurce Mecca, a Senior Analyst at the Climateworks Centre added, “Climate investment is not only about dollars. It is also about how investments are centered on the people who will be impacted the most by them.” In the final YEF session, Ms. Maya Delaney, moderator and MBA candidate at MIT Sloan School of Management summed up the core element of the three days. "Addressing climate change will require cross-sector partnerships to meet NDCs, and climate finance is a necessary piece to unlock the solutions we need."  

Additionally, the BMZ Youth Advisory Council, GIZ Asia Pacific regional team, UNICEF, UNITAR, YOUNGO, and the Youth Empowerment in Climate Action Platform (YECAP) hosted capacity-building sessions on resources available for youth to increase understanding of pathways for climate action. In these teach-in sessions, participants learned from youth leaders and partners on topics ranging from finance elements of the Paris Agreement to coordinating with government agencies to contribute to climate policy to regional support programs for sustainable energy.  

The Youth Engagement Forum is rooted in the NDC Partnership’s Youth Engagement Plan (YEP), which presents opportunities for increased, meaningful engagement of young people in the NDC Partnership’s work.  

Partnership members are encouraged to incorporate relevant actions in their country or organizational context and collaborate across the Partnership to strengthen youth engagement in NDC action. The NDC Partnership Youth Engagement Plan proposes a series of actions to engage meaningfully with youth:  

  • Design youth-inclusive NDC processes at the country level
  • Support the development of youth-led NDC implementation projects
  • Strengthen climate change capacity building for young people
  • Encourage youth participation in global NDC Partnership activities

To learn more, watch the video recordings from each session below:  

Africa, the Middle East and Europe  

Asia and the Pacific

The Americas and the Caribbean