Participation is a fundamental right. It is one of the guiding principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that has been reiterated in many other Conventions and Declarations. Through civic engagement, young people are empowered to play a vital role in their own development as well as in that of their communities, helping them to learn essential life-skills, develop knowledge on human rights and citizenship, and to promote positive civic action. To effectively participate, young people must be given the proper tools, such as education about, and access to, their civil rights.

To ensure the protection and promotion of rights and enhance civic engagement of young people, the Youth-SWAP aims to: 

Ensure the inherent rights of youth are recognized and upheld to enable young people’s engagement in all aspects of their development.

In 2013 the IANYD and its member entities achieved notable results in the thematic area of protection of rights and civic engagement by contributing to the implementation of the following measures on a global, regional and national level: 

  • Support countries to take action towards safeguarding and promoting the human rights of youth
  • Promote young people’s effective inclusive civic engagement at local, national, regional and global levels

For details on specific activities, joint programmes, achievements and progress at the global, regional and country levels, please read the 2014 System-wide Action Plan on Youth Report, available here.