Press Release - ‘Voices of the youth’ - Debatathon on the solutions to bring gender transformative changes

Posted:04th Oct 2017

New Delhi, October 4, 2017: In line with the global commitments to leave no one behind while advancing the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agenda, as well as the Government of India’s focus on inclusion and ‘putting the last child first’, Plan India has been vigorously working towards the Plan For Every Child (P4EC) campaign which was launched in 2016. The National Conference this year will focus specifically on girls in marginalised, excluded and vulnerable situations. It aims to present the interface of inclusion, access and opportunities for girls within the marginalised groups. The P4EC Conference will be held from November 1-3, 2017 at the India Habitat Centre, New Delhi.

This year, the Conference will bring forth voices of the 200 youth from across the country as the culmination of debatathons in various states. The debatathons would be organised in collaboration with technical partner Pravah and will be held in Maharashtra (Mumbai: October 3-5); Bihar and Jharkhand (Patna: October 9-11); Assam, covering the North-East states (Guwahati: October 14-16); Andhra Pradesh and Telangana (Hyderabad: October 14-16) and Delhi, covering the states adjoining the National Capital Region (October 23-25). Based on the SDGs and Plan India’s Gender Vulnerability Index, the youth will engage in discussions on bringing about gender transformative changes and debate on ‘out of the box’ solutions.

Participants for the state level events will be selected during the orientation programme on issues of children in difficult circumstances and on the SDGs. The NGO partners operating in different districts will select 12-15 participants in the age group of 18-24 from various colleges and universities based on their performance during this orientation.

During these state events, the first day will be used as a background orientation session with the youth; the actual debatathon will be held on the second day, and the third day will be used by the youth to prepare a state youth charter which will then be presented to the duty bearers. The youth charters developed in these sessions will be shared at the National Conference, where the winners will come together to debate on the solutions at the grand finale on November 2, 2017.

Ms. Bhagyashri Dengle, Executive Director Plan India shares that, “For nearly four decades, Plan India has provided spaces for youth to continuously engage, inform and govern programmes implemented in their communities. They raise their voice to influence different stakeholders on issues that affect them and the lives of children. This initiative aims to also engage youth outside our programme areas, so that they participate in larger discourse, raise awareness and advocate for girls’ rights,”

The Plan for Every Child - Leave No Girl Behind campaign is a movement to support the 2030 SDGs through children’s rights with special emphasis on equality for girls. Under the initiative, efforts are made to ensure that government and civil society come together to provide opportunities to scale best practices, design specialised schemes and advocate towards gender transformative changes at all levels, to address all needs for a more equitable world for the girl child, in general, and for girls in difficult circumstances, in particular.

Plan India, is a nationally registered independent child development organisation committed to creating a lasting impact in the lives of vulnerable and excluded children, their families and communities. For over 35 years, Plan India and its partners have improved the lives of millions of children by providing them access to protection, basic education, proper healthcare, a healthy environment, livelihood opportunities and participation in decisions which affect their lives.