For years now young people have been sidelined in food production, yet they have been at the core in the struggle to end climate crisis, biodiversity loss, food hunger, poverty, water and health security. COVID-19 coming into play, threatening livelihoods and axacerbating nutrition related diseases. This calls for young innovative ideas to solve the problem at hand.
Are young people capable of playing key roles in achieving SDGs? Yes, if given correct platforms at the correct time. Mark Zuckerburg at 19, created Facebook a platform connecting billions of people and a major playground for strategic activism. If one young person could connect the whole world from the comforts of their homes, imagine what a thousand young people with opportunities could do? A look into Gugulethu Mahlangu a young South African farmer changing lives even during the COVID-19 Pandemic which has seen the closing of some institutes which couldn’t adapt thus threatening a lot of livelihoods and pulling a strain on Sustainable Development Goal number 1 which focuses on ending hunger by 2030. The digital world is too complicated for the older generations but it has proved to be a safe working space during this pandemic. This creates more need for young people in all institutes for them to balance the digital spaces.
Food security, according to the World Food Programme, is when people have “availability and adequate access at all times to sufficient, safe, nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life”. Rising temperature, change in rainfall patterns and an increase in the frequency and severity of disasters is threatening food supply and access, especially for the world’s most vulnerable – many of whom rely on agriculture for their livelihoods. Climate change is caused by the humanity’s increased use of fossil fuels, deforestation and increasingly intensive agriculture. All these can be reduced by the introduction of new innovative ideas and this is where young people come in. A look into Greta Thunberg, the 15 year old from Sweden sparked a global movement of school age students demanding greater action from government to fight climate change. “I want people to know that not only privileged people are aware of climate change.” said Ayakha Melithafa our very own young African. Imagine a world run by youths.
So according to me #StewieLeSavage, I think young people are more capable of handling everything when given platforms because every case study shows all the abilities of young people in their diversity. Young people are today and tomorrow’s leaders, so let them lead.