Making Noise and Getting Things Done: Youth Inclusion and Advocacy for Peace: Lessons from Afghanistan, South Sudan and Myanmar

Friday 22 December 2023

Spalding, Savannah, Odgers-Jewell, Casey-Jade, Payne, Hayley, Mollica, Caitlin, & Berents, Helen. 2021.

This report is a conjoined research project about youth’s inclusion in peacebuilding processes in Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Myanmar. Initially, the authors outline the United Nations’ Youth, Peace, and Security Agenda, established in 2015, as an important step toward including young people in formal peace processes across the world. Yet, the progress toward implementing youth-inclusive strategies remains largely conceptual. The findings in the research evidence the need for international stakeholders to meaningfully support and fund youth peacebuilders. In brief, the research is conducted by interviewing youth peacebuilders from Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Myanmar who convey how the main obstacle in their pursuits for peace is that they are excluded from formal peace processes within governmental and political institutions. Due to such exclusion, young people largely seek out ways to build peace in informal ways in their local communities. An essential insight from this report is how to connect the formal and informal ways of building peace for young people. In addition to this, the authors highlight five key messages/recommendations to the international community and other stakeholders at the end of the report. The recommendations are drawn from the youth peacebuilders’ experiences of how to amplify and empower youth voices in building and sustaining peace in societies. This report contributes to our Library of Peace by taking the perspectives of young people seriously in peacebuilding as well as in wider knowledge production.

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