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The United Nations Youth Delegates in Brussels

Last updated on Tuesday, 29/09/2020

The UN Youth Delegates are real negotiators who represent their countries in the United Nations. Get inspired by these enthusiastic yet pragmatic young people, who believe they can shape the present and the future for the better.

The United Nations Youth Delegate programme was launched in 2015 to give young people a voice in decision-making within this global organisation. The Youth Delegates provide input for their countries’ official positions, bringing the voice of young people into international negotiations. They also participate in formal meetings of the United Nations General Assembly, the United Nations Economic & Social Council and in other places where global decisions are made.

Youth delegates are given official roles as members of their countries’ delegations, and it is for the individual countries to select their young representatives.

For the first time, the European External Action Service invited the UN Youth Delegates from EU counties to visit the European institutions in Brussels. It was a very full day! The Youth Delegates had a chance to contribute to the policymaking process in the EU Council. They then met their colleagues in the European External Action Service and European Commission for informal discussions. Finally, they exchanged views at the European Parliament.

We were lucky enough to meet them so we could ask about what motivated them.

Although these young men and women all want to make a difference, they understand the nature of global problem solving, which requires compromises and can be slow. However, they remain enthusiastic about international cooperation. 

Youth delegates can make a real impact in the United Nations and help achieve progress in changing our world for the better. What’s more, UN Youth Delegates connect with young people in their own countries. 

‘You get to drive forward concrete, real-world projects on issues like poverty, inclusion and discrimination’, Belgian delegate Flore De Pauw explains, emphasising that her role as UN Youth Delegate has given her real credibility locally. 

‘We took part in negotiations on the new United Nations Youth Resolution last year’, says Bulgarian delegate Minko Daskalov. ‘It was a great success. We really sat at the negotiating table, rather than staying behind our ambassadors.’

Are you interested in the UN Youth Delegate programme? Get in touch with your National Youth Council or Ministry of Foreign Affairs. And check out the section on the UN Youth Delegate programme on the United Nations website.