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Young People Meet To Discuss UN Development Goals

Young People Meet in Brazil To Discuss UN Development Goals

New York, May 11 2005 6:00PM

Young people from Latin America and the Caribbean gather tomorrow in south-east Brazil for a four-day meeting designed to find ways of overcoming poverty and violence and achieving the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a set of targets to reduce or eliminate a host of socio-economic ills by 2015.

"The Latin American and Caribbean Youth Leadership Summit will help bring young people into the global network of committed and talented young professionals that we are establishing through a series of summits," said Dr. Djibril Diallo, Chair of the UN youth leadership series and Director of the UN New York Office of Sport for Development and Peace.

"Our goal is to provide the opportunities and the platform so they can become strong forces for change in the effort to meet the Millennium Development Goals."

The MDGs, agreed by Heads of State at the UN in 2000, call for the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger, primary education for all children, gender equality and empowerment of women, reduced child mortality, improved maternal health, combating HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases, environmental sustainability and forging a global partnership for development.

Some 1,000 youngsters are expected to take part in the opening ceremony in Belo Horizonte, the capital of Minas Gerais province, when Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will call on them to become partners with their governments in helping to solve the region's problems.

The participants, outstanding young people chosen by UN agencies for their achievements, leadership potential and commitment to social change, will use the appeal of sports as a tool for mobilizing support for the MDGs during the International Year of Sport and Physical Education 2005 (IYSPE 2005), Dr. Diallo said.

UN experts on the MDGs will facilitate the discussions and provide guidance, he said.

The summit is the third in the youth leadership series. African youth met last June in Dakar, Senegal, and Asians met last September in Hiroshima, Japan.


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