Meet the President of “VAS” Mr. Youssouf:
The “International Youth Conference: Youth in Diaspora, a means to support development” was organized by VAS Austria from 22-24 October 2014 in Vienna, in collaboration with UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organization) and the partnership of Austrian Development Cooperation/Agency (ADA).
The Conference was the first of its kind held in Europe and presents an undeniable opportunity for African leaders and Ambassadors, diplomats, foreign policy & development experts and UN officials to work closely together and coordinate international dialogue amongst important stakeholders for African development, which will produce real benefits for young Africans in terms of entrepreneurship and sustainable development of the region.
Participants benefited from different trainings, workshops, and got the chance to be presidents of Africans countries in the Model of African Union, an opportunity that led them to discover about African countries that they didn’t know before, and exercise the same duty as leaders which is the decision making and speaking out in the name of the citizens.
An important session in the event was dedicated to understand the opportunities and the challenges facing Africa in creating decent jobs for its youth.
The experts discussed the definition of decent job, its characteristic and the role the diaspora can play in the development of jobs in Africa and Europe.
Mr. Charles Dan, the International Labor Organization Representative, mentioned that in the last years many young men and women were rated unemployed, this crisis touched Africa in a very critical way. In sub-Saharan countries, finding jobs it is just another challenging story that faces young Africans.
Mr. Charles said: “In Africa we don’t have a decent job; we strive for jobs with quality. Decent jobs are based on quality and respect and promotion of the international standards and guaranteeing insurance security”
What do we need to do to have a better rate of job creation in Africa?
Mr. Charles insists on the necessity to launch developed economic policies and make these policies a priority, invest in the economic strategies is the only way to create jobs in Africa.
In the other hand, Africans in Diaspora most of the time don’t return to their home countries because of the lack of getting decent jobs, the lack of experienced professionals pushes Africa to look for foreign people for work. Investing in providing decent jobs for African Diaspora is a crucial.
Africa is missing a clear and well-organized methodology to address the issue of employment among Africans; Africa needs to start with this to confront this issue.
Africans need to be provided by loans, opportunities of entrepreneurship and companies ownership, Africans need to be trained to be competent which will make Africa rely on itself instead of asking foreign help, also gender equality orientation and protection should be ensured. Communication and connection between Africa and the diaspora is very important for the development of business in the region.
Mr. Djibril Coulibaly, United Nations Industrial Development Organization Representative, believes that the question on how to achieve job creation opportunities is related to the level of commitment and investments that African leaders show towards this issue, he insists on the need for practical actions instead of continuous political speeches, the real work in the reality.
The question of creation of jobs is a problem of all countries, especially the sub Saharan countries, each year Africa ends up with 11 million of young people who join the job market, but the question do we have this job market?
Mr. Djibril Coulibaly invites Africa to think about the necessity of providing satisfied jobs and not only remunerable jobs where Africans can improve their knowledge and creativity.
While Mr. Jesse Ojbor, UNIDO Representative, insists on the importance of Africans in Diaspora in bring out global jobs connections opportunities into Africa, which will boost the international economy of the region.
He highlighted also the definition of youth age that differs from a country to another in Africa which influences the vision of providing jobs for youth. He stressed on the fact that Africans today can play a brain drain and a brain gain role. In fact, he believes that Africans wherever they are, they can help in the economic development of their countries, he gave an illustrative example of an African who sends money to his mom and who uses it in an entrepreneurship project of hers, which in the other side helps in shifting the economic situation of his country.
Mr. Malick Sy, UNIDO Senegal Representative, invites the African governments to provide their youth with quality education, trainings and work experiences, and then Africa won’t need foreign professionals.
Mr. Malick believes that public and private sector need to work together for the development of the region, by that coordinating strategies and efforts.
Mr. Mohamed Yahya Murad, Board Member of Bahrain Voluntary Work Society, shared his experience to empower youth employment in Bahrain through his project “Tamkin”, that provides financial and advisory aid to meet the needs of the Bahraini youth, and lead them to meet the economic vision of the country.
The event was a successful beneficial for the Youth from Africa and Europe, as many of them shared their hunger to make change once they get back home, because they believe that it is time for action.