Youth to play an active role in implementation of SDGs, says Education Minister

Youth is a fundamental stakeholder in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and not having them on board during discussions related to SDGs would result in having voice poverty. The Young Mauritians’ Plan for the Planet (YMPP) programme is one way for young persons to contribute to the implementation process of the SDGs.

The Minister of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research, Mrs Leela Devi Dookun-Luchoomun, made this statement at the launching ceremony of the YMPP programme and the international launch of the Young Persons’ Plan for the Planet, this morning at the Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre in Bell Village. The High Commissioner of Australia to Mauritius, Ms Jenny Dee, other personalities and secondary school students were present on this occasion.

In her address, Minister Dookun-Luchoomun highlighted that the innovative YMPP programme to raise awareness about SDGs among youth, has been developed in partnership with the Australian National University and Questacon � the National Science and Technology Centre of Australia. She observed that right from its inception, this initiative had one fundamental goal: empower secondary school students and harness their enthusiasm and insight so as to come up with plans to address global issues across all the SDGs.

Mrs Dookun-Luchoomun underscored that an awareness of the SDGs helps to broaden the horizon of the Mauritian youth and enables them to move out of restrictive insularity. Living on an island is no justification for local schools to have a limitative, self-centred and inward-looking perspective as students must have a much broader and certainly more international approach to global issues and be familiar with them, she pointed out.

She stressed that the YMPP programme fits in perfectly with Government’s determination to provide a holistic education to Mauritian youth.

For her part, High Commissioner Dee underlined that the two countries have a strong partnership in the field of research, education and innovation. She also encouraged students to embrace the opportunities of sharing experiences and partnering with their Australian counterparts throughout the programme.

After the launching ceremony, students had the opportunity to interact with Mr Ian Chambers, Director of the Young Persons’ Plan for the Planet programme, and Mrs Suzanne Urbaniak, Science Teacher at Kent St High School, Perth.

Young Mauritians’ Plan for the Planet

The Young Mauritians’ Plan for the Planet is a pilot project operated as a co-curricular or extra-curricular programme and involves 10 secondary schools across nine districts of Mauritius. Each school will form a team of 12 students and two educators/mentors.

The project encourages young Mauritians to use business planning principles to tap onto the opportunities provided by the SDGs to develop a plan for the planet. Participants will also be able to learn more about the SDGs while focussing on how their respective surroundings are concerned. They will identify specific areas that need to be addressed and develop an action plan to achieve their goals.

At the end of the programme, each school will present their plans in a youth conference. The plans of the 10 teams will be compiled and forwarded to the Prime Minister for consideration.

Source: Government of Mauritius