UNODC initiates activities of the Ambassadors of Youth Program

The training course is composed of participants from diverse community leadership profiles. Its objective is to prepare young multipliers to represent their communities in international forums.


Brasilia, 12 September 2016 - Last Saturday (10), UNODC received at its headquarters in Brasilia, 25 young people with different profiles to participate in the first module of the Ambassadors of Youth Programme, after a highly competitive selection process, with more than a thousand subscribers. The training course aims to promote a leadership culture and experience exchange between participants in order to prepare them to work in international forums representing their communities. One of the minds behind this course is the teenager Ruth Itunu  Adewonuola, the Brazilian representative at the ECOSOC Youth Forum (Economic and Social Council), in February this year.


During the opening session, the UNODC Representative in Brazil, Rafael Franzini, stressed the importance of engaging young people in political agendas to develop skills and competencies such as leadership, critical thinking and communication. "When you have to talk about youth, no one better than the young man himself. Much is said that youth is the future of the country, but having a committed youth is one step further and you [participants] have some responsibility in this. Responsibility develops a critical spirit, it develops the knowledge of the rights of the persons and, more importantly, it teaches how to communicate effectively," said Rafael. The Marketing Coordinator of the Institute Caixa Seguradora (ICS), Alice Scartezini, highlighted the ICS and the UNODC's efforts to build spaces to allow young people to speak out, an approach which began with the launch of the Youth of Expression Program in 2007.

The speakers Elisa Pinchemel, a teacher and an international lawyer, and Rodrigo Araujo, Master of Transnational Crime at the University of Glasgow, Scotland, began the activities of the first module to introduce the participants to basic conceptual elements of International Relations and International Law. Soon after, Professor João Paulo Araujo, from the UniCEUB University, presented an overview of the UN history, in addition to the main challenges faced by the organization nowadays.


The Rule of Law Programme Coordinator, Nivio Nascimento, also participated in the debate on the UN system and answered questions asked by the participants regarding the UN and the role of UNODC in promoting its agenda, especially in the fields regarding youth. The exhibition ended with the speaker Elisa Pinchemel, who spoke about their work experience in the UN system and the UNODC's actions structure. The activity ended with a new round of debates, in which the participants did an exercise of self-reflection within the United Nations context.

For the following four modules, the participants will take part in exhibitions and debate topics related to key thematic UN system - Objectives of Sustainable Development (ODS), human rights and youth, gender and sexual/reproductive health, among others - and a leadership training.

The Youth Ambassadors Program is a partnership between UNODC and the Caixa Seguradora and is an initiative of the institutions for the promotion of social responsibility and business aimed at the prevention of violence.

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