Monday, 22 April 2019 08:22 GMT

Jordan- Report calls for more attention to displaced youth's voices

(MENAFN - Jordan Times) AMMAN — Young people living in vulnerable conditions are not sufficiently considered by humanitarian and development actors, despite being dynamic actors eager to make a change in society, a recent report by Finn Church Aid (FCA) titled 'Youth on the Move' stated.

'Young people often tend to slip through the various forms of work and funding. Nevertheless, they are dynamic actors having enormous potential as builders of their own lives and societies,' the report, which was co-authored by Sarah Huxley, Matthias Wevelsiep and Katri Suomi indicated.

With 10 per cent of the world's refugee population being aged between 15 and 24 years old, the need to pay attention to this category's needs and aspirations is 'critical', the report stated, lamenting the fact that substantial programming and policy related to young women and men 'on the move' in fragile contexts 'has been largely underexplored and misunderstood'.

According to FCA figures, there are about 1.8 billion people between the ages of 15 and 24 years old in the world today, 90 per cent of whom live in developing countries like Jordan.

'Currently, development cooperation, humanitarian aid and other such areas of work are unable to respond properly especially to the needs of youth on the move,' the report stated, noting that 'on the move' entails multi-faceted concepts, such as social transitions, personal development and societal changes, among others.

'We want to encourage policymakers to go beyond narrow policy frameworks that only consider young people's transitions from school to work and attaining job security, or the geographical flows of migrants, refugees and the undocumented,' the publication pointed out, stressing that 'policies and practices should also acknowledge the attributes and capabilities that young people already possess, as they are eager to be included in decisions that affect their lives'.

'Civil society organisations should listen to young people more and reform their work to take better account of youth,' urged Development Manager at the FCA, Matthias Wevelsiep, referring to the need to support young people's access to education and training.

He cited the example of refugee camps, noting that youth in those camps 'should be offered diplomas that make them eligible for further studies and employment, both in their countries of residence and their countries of origin.'

Recent reports by the European Commission and the World Bank highlighted exclusion from livelihoods and decent, dignified jobs as one of the main push factors for youth on the move, both in terms of perceived better pay and rights.

Providing vocational training in developing countries is 'of the greatest importance', the report noted, both 'in terms of youth and refugee policies, as well as national security'.

'Especially in fragile situations, the transition of youth from one phase of life to another is interrupted and they may have to wait even for a long time to get on with their lives, meaning that many of the youth living in difficult situations have to work in the grey economy in order to get by,' FCA pointed out.

Dubbing the fragile situations youth on the move encounter in transitioning from school to working life as 'waithood', the report urged for improved access to formal and non formal quality education for youth above 15, including vocational and entrepreneurial training.

In Jordan, FCA is conducting entrepreneur training for Syrian refugees and Jordanian youth, which include barber training, mobile maintenance, handicrafts and agricultural training, among others.

While stressing that 'the potential of youth for active and dynamic action should be recognised and they should be empowered to participate in societal decision-making and building the future', Wevelsiep insisted that focus should not only be restricted to the problems of the youth alone.


Jordan- Report calls for more attention to displaced youth's voices


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