Today, August 12, 2022 the world observes International Youth Day. The day is set aside to raise awareness of any issues that may be facing the world’s youth to celebrate their achievements.
This year’s theme: Intergenerational Solidarity: Creating a world for all ages, harps on the need to collaborate to foster successful and equitable intergenerational relations and partnerships to ensure no one is left behind. While intergenerational solidarity and concern for the future generations is being called for in tackling global issues, many challenges remain.
Ageism according to the United Nations, continues to present a significant-yet, not sufficiently-discussed challenge to fostering collaboration and solidarity across age groups.
Ageism has bearings on both older and younger populations around the world at large, The Gambia as a country and the Teaching Fraternity, in particular.
It often times traverses with other forms of bias and impacts people in ways that prevent them to reach their full potential and contribute meaningfully to society.
Reports on ageism indicate many data gaps that exist with regards to ageism against youth. Young people continue to report age-related barriers in various spheres of their lives such as employment, promotion, and political participation amongst others.
Therefore, fostering intergenerational solidarity between generations is more than necessary to ensure an inclusive and sustainable recovery.
We at the Gambia Teachers Union Young Teachers Platform (GTUYTP) recognize efforts to promote and strengthen the youth voice in matters of the Union, the Sector and the Country at large. We recognize and thumbs up efforts to build the capacity of the youthful membership of the GTU.
We must build on the gains registered and create more avenues to ensure that the youth voice is reflected in the programmes and policy designs of the Union.
We equally celebrate the gallantry efforts of young teachers and education support personnel across the country.
Evidently, the future of the Education Sector and the development of the country as well as the advancement of the Union largely rest on our collective contribution as young people of the profession and the Economy.
As we observe IYD 2022, we must also challenge Government to prioritize the development of young people in the teaching profession.
This should include but not be limited to providing scholarships for them to develop themselves academically, reviewing policies to ensure deserving young teachers are promoted to different cadres in the Establishment as well as improving their socioeconomic welfare through incentives and allowances that commensurate the very challenging conditions they perform their duties.
Source: Information and Communication Office, GTUYTP
NB: The Gambia Teachers Union Young Teachers Platform- GTUYTP, is an organ of the Union established in 2019 with the mandate to represent the voice of members of the Union within the youth bracket (18-40), as per the GTUYTP By-Law, constituting about 67% of the membership of the Union.