The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Iraqi Ministry of Youth and Sport (MoYS) have signed a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to empower Iraqi youth and promote youth leadership, citizenship and effective participation in decision-making.
The three-year MoU provides a framework of cooperation between the two partners to support innovative solutions to social and economic challenges facing Iraqi youth.
This collaboration responds to current pressing global and national development challenges and will contribute to achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda in Iraq through strengthening partnerships between young people and relevant policy-makers.
It raises awareness to ensure challenges faced by youth will be addressed and heard, their contributions recognized, and promotes their participation in all levels of decision-making.
The MoU also promotes exchanging and sharing of knowledge and information to inform the development of youth-specific activities and advocate for youth volunteerism and civic engagement in peace, stability and social cohesion programming.
In a statement on the signing of this memorandum, the Minister of Youth and Sport, Mr. Adnan Dirjal, said:
"The UNDP has been supporting us in different aspects and gained the trust of both the Iraqi citizens and the Government. This MoU will further strengthen our cooperation and provide the needed support to one of the largest groups in Iraq, the youth. We are proud to work alongside UNDP and consider this as a milestone towards more achievements to come in the near future".
Emphasizing the need for youth participation in shaping future Iraq, Resident Representative of UNDP Iraq, Zena Ali Ahmad, said:
"UNDP's approach is founded on empowering young Iraqis and partnering with youth across all dimensions of sustainable development, As Iraq has one of the largest youth populations in the region, engaging young people in decision-making and making their voices heard is crucial in shaping the choices of the future to achieve Agenda 2030."
In line with the 2018-2022 National Development Plan in Iraq, UNDP and the MoYS will work together to support priorities stipulated in national polices relevant to youth, and to provide an enabling environment to support innovative solutions to social and economic challenges facing youth in Iraq.