Let Youth Lead: Time to Step Aside and Show Support!

With the ‘promise of a better world’ in mind the UN Youth Office has launched an new advocacy campaign – “World Leaders: It’s Time to Let #YouthLead” – calling for greater youth representation in decision-making roles in both the public and private sector, civil society, academia, and the UN. 

As crises continue to unfold, there has been a lack of unity among world leaders in solving challenges for the “collective good”, the Youth Office said in a letter kickstarting the campaign. 

The office says it deems it important to have leaders and institutions include young people in roles where their voices can be heard, or a common future might be at stake.

Putting more diverse perspectives around the decision-making table is the only way to ensure we don’t continue to repeat past mistakes,” the office said in their open letter. 

“By championing intergenerational solidarity and finding innovative solutions even in the most challenging of circumstances, young people remind us that a better world is still possible.

The office says that hope and trust will be rebuilt and restored when significant youth engagement becomes the norm with the backing of “dedicated resourcing everywhere around the world.”

Summit of the Future

As the time for the landmark Summit of the Future in September at UN Headquarters draws nearer, the Youth Office is extending an open letter to young people across the globe where they can pen a message to world leaders.

During the summit, world leaders will focus on coming to an international consensus on safeguarding the future and tackling the best solution for reclaiming the path of the UN’s 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

The office hopes there will be a positive and large response from youth around the world that will push leaders attending the summit to “commit to finally giving young people their rightful seat at the table.

Youth and the UN

UN Secretary-General António Guterres supports the campaign’s efforts, saying, “I am absolutely committed to bringing young people into political decision-making; not just listening to your views, but acting on them.” 

Just last year, at the UN’s annual Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Youth Forum, Mr. Guterres said that young people are key to building a better future, urging governments to consult more with young people – pointing to his UN policy brief, Our Common Agenda, that calls for “inclusive, networked, and effective multilateralism to better respond and deliver for the people and planet.”

UN Assistant Secretary-General for Youth Affairs, Felipe Paullier,  also supports this advocacy campaign. He said the inclusion of youth in decision-making roles at all levels, “is one of the most powerful tools at our disposal to address the ongoing conflicts, rising geopolitical tensions and increasing uncertainty facing our world today.”

ECOSOC 2024 Youth Forum

Conversations about this campaign and further discussions about how to create a better tomorrow will begin at this year’s three-day ECOSOC Youth Forum running from, April 16-18, involving a wide range of stakeholders including young people and senior politicians.

We are watching. Don’t let us down”, is the overarching message to governments worldwide.



  1. Do you believe that including youth in decision-making roles truly leads to more innovative solutions and avoids repeating past mistakes?

    1. Yes, JessicaSmith123, involving youth in decision-making roles not only brings fresh perspectives and innovative ideas to the table but also helps avoid repeating past mistakes. Their unique experiences and forward-thinking mindset contribute to creating a more inclusive and sustainable future for all. It’s time to embrace youth leadership and support their invaluable contributions towards positive change!

  2. It’s high time we start empowering the youth and giving them the platform to lead. Their fresh perspectives and innovative thinking are crucial for shaping a better future. Let’s step aside and support #YouthLead!

  3. It’s about time world leaders start prioritizing youth involvement in decision-making processes. Empowering the next generation is crucial for creating a brighter future for all. Let’s support the #YouthLead campaign and pave the way for positive change!

  4. As a young adult, I wholeheartedly support the initiative proposed in this campaign. It’s time for the older generation to step aside and let the youth take the lead. Only by including young voices in decision-making processes can we truly create a better future for everyone. #YouthLead

  5. As a young person myself, I strongly believe that it’s time for the older generations to step aside and let the youth lead. Our voices and perspectives are vital in shaping a better future for all. It’s crucial that leaders recognize the importance of including young people in decision-making roles to avoid repeating past mistakes. I fully support the “World Leaders: It’s Time to Let #YouthLead” campaign and hope to see real change in the near future.

  6. Is there any specific plan in place to ensure the implementation of greater youth representation in decision-making roles mentioned in the campaign?

    1. Indeed, Emily82, the campaign aims to advocate for the inclusion of young voices in crucial decision-making positions across various sectors. This involves creating actionable strategies and fostering partnerships to empower the youth in shaping a brighter future for all. Stay tuned for updates on the progress!

  7. Do you think world leaders are willing to truly step aside and allow youth to lead effectively in decision-making roles?

    1. World leaders need to demonstrate genuine commitment by not just stepping aside but also actively supporting and empowering youth to take on leadership roles. It’s time for them to show real dedication to letting #YouthLead in decision-making positions across various sectors for a brighter future.

  8. As a young professional myself, I fully support the call for greater youth representation in decision-making roles. It’s about time for the older generation to step aside and create space for fresh perspectives and innovative solutions. Letting #YouthLead is crucial in shaping a better world for all of us.

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