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African youth speak out at the G8 Summit

© UNICEF/MOZA/L.Clemente
Fourteen year-old Mayisha presents a child-to-child radio programme at Radio Mozambique.

A young radio producer from Mozambique participate in the debate

Maputo, 14 July 2006- Fourteen-year-old Amélia Maisha Silas Tunzine (Maisha) from Maputo will participate in a live video conference in Johannesburg on 14 July together with a group of youth from Botswana, Lesotho and South Africa as part of a the Junior G8 Summit in Saint-Petersburg, Russia. The young participants from Africa will discuss one of the four main themes of the Junior G8 Summit with young people from G8 countries gathered in Russia for the Summit.

"I will have the opportunity to meet children from other poor countries and together influence G8 decision-making concerning support to our countries," said Maisha before she left for Johannesburg on Thursday.

The Junior G8 is a children and young people’s version of the G8 meeting hosted by the Russian government in St. Petersburg. Junior G8 will take place from 7-18 July 2006, prior and during the G8 Leaders summit. A total of 64 children – 8 from each of the G8 countries (Russian Federation, U.S.A., Canada, Japan, Italy, France, United Kingdom and Germany) – will participate in the Junior 8 summit in St. Petersburg to debate, discuss and firmly place their views on the agenda of the G8 leaders.

The recommendations and findings of the Junior G8 Meeting will be presented to the G8 world leaders by 8 young participants on Sunday 16 July 2006. This is the first G8 meeting in 30 years to have formally included in its official agenda an interface between children and the G8 leaders.

African youth have their say

To provide an opportunity for young people from developing countries to have their voices heard during the Summit, UNICEF has organized a series of live video conferences around the world on Friday 14 July 2006 between the child participants gathered in St. Petersburg for the Junior 8 Summit and children and young people gathered at four main locations around the world –Bangkok (Thailand), Cairo (Egypt), Johannesburg (South Africa) and Mexico city (Mexico).

The participants will exchange ideas, views and opinions with children from around the world on the main four themes of the Junior 8 agenda and other issues and concerns of children and young people around the world – represented in the four regional groups involved in the video-conferencing:

  • Theme 1: “The spread of extremism and violence among youth” (Mexico)

  • Theme 2: “Education and the values of the younger generation” (Cairo)

  • Theme 3: “Energy resources and the future of mankind” (Johannesburg)

  • Theme 4: “The spread of HIV/AIDS and other socially influential infections and drug addition among youth” (Bangkok)

The main views, ideas and recommendations that will be shared and discussed during each video-conferencing session will be used as input to the drafting of the final communiqué that the children from Junior 8 summit will present to the G8 Leaders when they meet with them on Sunday 16 July 2006 morning.

A young radio producer from Mozambique

In collaboration with Radio Mocambique, UNICEF selected Amélia Maisha Silas Tunzine to represent African children at the video-conference in Johannesburg. Maisha was born in 1992 in the City of Maputo. She joined the Radio Mozambique Beira child-to-child radio programme in 2000, at the age of 8. In 2001 she moved with her family to Maputo city, where she joined Radio Mozambique Maputo as a child-to-child radio programme producer and presenter. Maisha has represented Mozambican children in national workshops on children in the radio, and the role of children in HIV/AIDS awareness.

The child-to-child radio programme is the voice of Mozambican youth in the media. More than 240 young radio journalists design, produce and present the programmes entirely on their own. The child-to-child radio programmes are currently broadcast in every province in the country and reach thousands of young people every week.
 
The topics discussed during the programmes include child abuse and violence, HIV and AIDS, health issues, education, environmental protection and entertainment.

For more information on the Junior G8 Summit, visit http://www.juniorg8.com/main

 

 
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