Youth’s Gift of Giving

UN World Youth Skills Day, 15th July

Highlighting the importance of equipping young people with the right skillset to prepare them for employment and entrepreneurship, UN World Youth Skills Day is an important universal occasion to call attention to our future leaders.

Today, education remains an inaccessible right for millions of children around the world. More than 72 million children of primary education age are not in school and 759 million adults are illiterate and do not have the awareness necessary to improve both their living conditions and those of their children.

A solid education can open the doors to fulfilling, productive, well-paid employment and much more. In the UAE, ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promoting lifelong learning opportunities for everyone is at the forefront of the government’s agenda with the UAE Ministry of Education announcing its commitment to high-quality education in the next 50 years.

That being said, ‘life skills’ and teaching our youth to become responsible citizens are equally important – and involving the youth in volunteering is an excellent way of teaching our future leaders the ropes. Tufts University for Research has reported that young volunteering individuals are more successful at school. Adding to that, whilst young volunteers’ rewards are often as great as those they give to others, volunteering provides essential skills such as creativity, leadership, critical thinking, and decision-making. Giving back through volunteering has even been shown to improve health by strengthening the body, improving mood, and lessening stress in youth.

Parents and schools can empower the youth to give back by incorporating volunteering through online programs, such as the Real World Studies programme, encourage them to give back to its local communities, or allow them to further develop essential life skills by exploring meaningful experiences overseas. Camps International has collaborated with 30,000 students and teachers who have been on Camps expeditions from Kenya to Cambodia and other destinations, impacting more than 120,000 lives across the globe.

While we work towards achieving SDG 4, opportunities are abundant for our youth to make a difference, and the advantages are numerous, both for the volunteer and those who receive.

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