New network provides a voice for Commonwealth youth in shaping tomorrow’s cities today.
60% of the population of the Commonwealth is young people under the age of 30. Well managed human settlements are key drivers of climate change solutions, economic development, innovation and entrepreneurship, and sources of employment underpinned by the activities of young people, who largely still lack a seat at the decision-making table.
The creation of this network is in response to the Call to Action on Sustainable Urbanisation across the Commonwealth, launched in 2021 by the Commonwealth Sustainable Cities Initiative which acknowledges the importance of youth in sustainable urbanisation. The network builds on the Youth Manifesto for Sustainable Urbanism launched at CHOGM 2018, London. A unique aspect of this network, reflecting the Call to Action, is recognising the need to foster interdisciplinarity between youth interested, or beginning their careers, in sectors related to the built environment, such as the technical professions, local government and academia. The Network was officially launched at CHOGM 2022 in Rwanda at which Heads of Government adopted a Declaration to prioritise a greater focus on sustainable urbanisation and 2023 was declared Year of the Youth! See this page for further details about the group and see here for the CYSU Theory of Change.
The Commonwealth Youth For Sustainable Urbanisation network was launched at the Commonwealth Youth Forum in Kigali on Sunday 19 June with the support of the Commonwealth Deputy Secretary General, Dr Arjoon Suddho, and the Rwandan Minister of State for Infrastructure, Ms Patricie Uwase. The group comprises a multi-disciplinary group of young professionals (18-35) with an interest in Sustainable Urbanisation. The interim steering committee includes representatives from Belize, Cameroon, eSwatini, Nigeria and the UK and had already attracted over 700 members by May 2023. See below for a map showing where members can be found, both within and beyond the Commonwealth.