The youth sector, which is mainly mandated with mobilising, organising and giving the youth opportunities for participation and representation in the social, economic, political, cultural and educational spheres. This is solely because the youth have strengths and potential, which unfortunately can be misused if not properly taped for their own and the community benefits.
Fortunately enough, there are ranges of activities being conducted by the youth clubs throughout the district. These activities are geared towards emancipation of the youth socially, economically, culturally and politically. Within Lira Municipal council there are 21 youth groups participating in Adult literacy, economic activities and youth entrepreneur scheme, while in rural areas, the youth are engaged in crafts, agricultural activities. Functional Adult Literacy – over 52 groups, sports and other recreation activities
Since we are aware of the population of the young persons in Lira District, their situation still needs to be addressed. Demographically, young people below the age of 30 years comprise 75% or 700,000 people in Lira district. The young aged 15 – 24 years make up 20% people and about 80% of the youth live in rural areas.
– Operation of the national youth policy.
– Availability of vehicle.
– Regular review meetings with key players in Pearl Programme.
– Revival and formation of youth groups on income generating activities.
– Networking with the district youth council and some youths NGOs.
– Human resource management from the district.
– Establishment of Youth Centres in Aromo and Ogur sub-counties
– Inadequate staff running field programmes and those present are not fully trained.
– Community centres are not well equipped with the friendly services for the youth.
– Needs of youth be politically, socially, economically and otherwise are met partially.
– Vocational training centres for youth is not available.
– Efficient running of youth council is encouraging youth to participate in HIV/AIDS Programme.
– Political will from the district and sub-county levels is quite commendable.
– Renovation of the community centres is opening space for youth programmes.
– Frequent sponsorship of the district youth council chairman to represent the district/the country outside for conferences/workshops – is one of the ways of promoting Leadership Skills/Relationships.
– Some empty promises during election campaign periods to youth.
– The yes (Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme) might become a dis-service to the youth, as it is being viewed to be political oriented.
– The rights and welfare of the youth have remained in the policy statement.
– No proper funds are allocated to youth activities be at district or central governments.
In order to understand the challenges of the youth, one must understand the concept of youth, which varies from community to community and from organization to organization.
– World Health Organisation (WHO) give the following category
– Adolescent is from 10 – 19 years
– Young people 10 years
– Youth 15 – 25 years
– Common Wealth Youth Programme defines a youth as person who is between the age of 14 and 29 years.
– UN 15-– 24 years
– Most political parties in Africa 15 to 35.
– Nation Youth Council statute 1993 defines youth as between 18 – 30 years.
– Recently the National Youth Policy has put in place the definition of the youth to be between ages of 12 to 30 years being female or male.
– A child is 0 -18 years according to the children statute 1996.
Roles of the youth in social services
Education – UPE: the youth are playing significant role in either attending primary education or some are being trained as teachers This is a wonderful development according to a situational analysis of women, adolescents and children in Uganda (1996); 21.3% of the youth have never attended schools, females 26.8%, male 15.5%.
There is already the National Youth policy in place which gives the definition of youth from 12 –30 be a female or male. The problem now is to make it known to the youth throughout the country and districts. Hence there is need to have a mass sensitisation up to grass root levels.
A number of CSOs carries out youth programme. NGO/CBOs are working with the youth on HIV/AIDS and IGA support