Accelerating the Achievement of SDGs through Youth Centered Land Governance

The session is set to facilitate the learning and exchange of the opportunities and glaring challenges to youth’s engagement in land governance and ways of accelerating it.

Moderator- Grace Ananda, Gender and Land Tenure Specialist

Innocent Antoine  Houedji-YILAA, International Coordinator of YILAA

YILAA continues to champion the coordination of youth centered land governance efforts in Africa. The presentation is narrowed to the following clustered themes;

  • SDGs and Youth

The SDG 1-talks about social protection and equal access to land. It emphasizes equality and land heritage and in general allows the youth to play a role in reduction of poverty and making land rights important for that to be achieved.

SDG 2- the youth’s role of the youth in fighting hunger is projected by goal 2 and encourages actions to integrate youth’s role in agriculture.

SDG 4- firms up the need for youth capacity building and access to education. African countries have tried to adopt free education and more youth are now educated.

SDG 5- the goal promotes the rights of women; the definition of youth includes young women and we aim to promote this narrative through young women’s land rights.

SDG 8- It talks about employment and training; youth are encouraged to acquire good education to secure better jobs. We call for more jobs for the youth across all sectors.

SDG 11- Urbanization and the current trends of youth migration makes the goal central in goal 11 and youth’s opportunities in urban spaces and their potential to promote climate smart cities.

SDG 13 & 14-Deforestation and climate change efforts must be youth responsive; this will tap their potential and effective participation in climate change mitigation. Goal 13 & 14 aim to mainstream the role of the youth in these efforts.

SDG 17- Calls on every one of us to form a platform to coordinate efforts for youth and SDGs involvement.

Further, YILAA promotes active youth involvement in land, natural resource governance, and pressing challenges like climate change, hunger and peace building through its projects and support of ILC. The land question is therefore key in youth agenda and partnerships must be strengthened to accelerate the dialogues.

Shadrack Omondi-Land Specialist, IGAD

Global, regional and national legal and policy frameworks have one thing in common, most of them are inclusive, participatory and representative. Unfortunately, youth engagement is not clear, the frameworks do not touch on supporting youth-based agency in the actual decision-making processes.

The critical opportunity is how do we take advantage of the positive opportunities in the legal and policy frameworks to foster youth inclusion.

Implementation of polices face cultural barriers and IGAD in this year’s conference emphasizes on the following;

  • Bridge generational gap and perceptions, prepare elders on how to manage changes in the land-sector.
  • Facilitate the process of developing alternatives to land rights, land ownership and access will not solve problems.
  • We must create social protection mechanisms that are beyond land to productive ventures, this will ease pressure on land and encourage youth to adopt innovative investment avenues.

Doreen Fredrick Tarimo-Youth Fellow, ILC

ILC Fellowship is facilitated by the ILC and is an opportunity for young people to grow their leadership skills and influence their institutional systems. The fellowship focuses on youth’s skills and competence with individual action plans and it seeks to feed on to the global networks and ongoing processes.

The fellowship aims at strengthening voices of young people across the world and how they can influence land-sector processes to be youth-responsive. The fellowship also takes into account achieving the SDGs and Agenda 2030 with young people at the center of it.

Session Key Recommendations

  • Accelerate SDG implementation with youth at the center.
  • Strengthen youth voices though a multi-disciplinary approach so that it answers to questions of climate change mitigation, food security, decent work and partnerships.
  • Reflect on inter-generational dialogues to facilitate change and create a pathway for youth inclusion in land governance.
  • Facilitate innovative ways of social protection, and not just focus on land.
  • Youth should be at the center of frameworks that aim to secure rights of communities, women and minorities.
  • Utilize technology and social media to activate our power and networks for youth agency in the land sector.

Context setting -Bernard Moseti, ILC

Session reported by Winny Chepkemoi, Kenya Land Alliance


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