MAINSTREAMING YOUTH

Young Diplomats of Canada

Engaging youth in Decision-Making

Young Diplomats of Canada (YDC) aims to ensure that youth participation is not limited to “youth” events, but instead that youth are able to participate in and access mainstream global convenings, as active participants in those processes. Thus, one of YDC’s objectives is to create space for youth participation at higher levels of decision-making, where young people are otherwise often tokenized or not considered at all.

YDC employs a digital advocacy model. Every minister in Canada is required to maintain an active Twitter presence, which allows YDC to facilitate interactions with key decision-makers over digital platforms. YDC empowers delegates to speak directly to decision-makers using platforms like Google Hangouts.

By mainstreaming youth participation within the organisation and in high-level decision-making spaces, YDC is able to engage more youth and better influence decision-makers. Using a digital strategy has enabled a broader cross-section of youth voices, increasing representational legitimacy and enabling access to decision-making spaces with limited resourcing. By mainstreaming youth participation and elevating youth voices, YDC has been successful in leveraging youth engagement to influence decision-making in Canada.

Further information of this strategy can be found here:

This digital strategy has supported youth interactions and engagement with decision-makers. This approach has also enabled YDC to reach, engage and consult a broad array of Canadian youth, including rural, Indigenous and low-income youth. These efforts to engage more diverse youth have also enhanced the organisation’s reputation and network, which has further improved access to decision-making spaces and improved the quality and effectiveness of YDC’s advocacy work.

Does your organisation have a civil society youth engagement practice that you would like to showcase here? Please let us know in the form below – any language is welcome! If you have any questions, please let us know at agna@civicus.org

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