This year, I am a finalist in the candidacy of the youth representatives for the United Nations of Biodiversity and Food. I would like you to vote for me, and here is why: I am committed to representing your opinion on national and international levels of politics. During my two-year term, I would like to engage in various main themes, such as, but not limited to the protein transition, nutritional education in primary and high schools and the promotion of a healthy agricultural system.
Are you curious to learn more about my campaign? Take a look at my campaign page, and don’t forget to cast your vote!
The Importance of Youth Participation
In today’s political landscape, we often hear phrases such as “the youth is the future” and “the next generation is you”. However, the statistics tell a different story: the current average age in the House of Representatives of the Netherlands is 44 years old ,. Despite its name, the House of Representatives lacks representation of one of the biggest parts of the Dutch population – youth. And this needs to change.
According to the Dutch Youth institute, “youth participation refers to the active involvement of children and young people in matters that concern them or affect them directly.” This involvement can range from small decisions, such as changing a biking path to school. To significant issues like policy-making on the current climate crisis. It’s time to break from the business-as-usual perspective and carve a different path. Young people definitely have an opinion on subjects and deserve to be heard for that. Especially considering that they are the leaders of the future.
Youth Participation in The Netherlands: An Example
Youth participation takes on many forms, one of which is the election of youth representatives in the Netherlands. Each year, a new youth representative is elected on each of the four mandates: European Union, Biodiversity and Food, Human Rights and Safety, and Sustainable Development. Every resident of the Netherlands between the age of 0 and 30 is eligible to vote during the campaign. If you’re interested in learning more about the experiences of a youth representative, check out this article.
Voting is just one piece of the puzzle. It’s crucial that you feel heard and realize that your voice matters. While the focus is currently on selecting youth representatives. In the future, you might consider joining a youth delegation of a political party. Or joining a strike to support a cause you believe in. Whatever you do, make your voice heard.