PEMSEA welcomes the first PNYL Council
PEMSEA has always had a strong belief in the potential of the creativity and passion of youth, and a desire to grow youth involvement in promoting the sustainability of our shared seas. With this in mind, we are proud to announce that at the recently concluded Fifth East Asian Seas (EAS) Youth Forum at the EAS Congress 2018, we launched the PEMSEA Youth Programme and welcomed the first batch of the PEMSEA Network of Young Leaders (PNYL).
With the seas of East Asia region holding a burgeoning youth population, the PEMSEA Youth Programme aims to strengthen youth engagement in the topics surrounding the coastal and ocean management. It will be a venue for youth to learn, be exposed to differing experiences, and become empowered advocates of our shared seas. A key part of the programme is the establishment of the PNYL. The PNYL will serve as a platform for knowledge sharing and collaboration, where members can discuss projects they are undertaking that contribute towards the global ocean agenda.
The pioneer PNYL batch consists of the 70 delegates who attended the Fifth EAS Youth Forum. A highly enthusiastic group, their efforts to become integrated coastal management practitioners will be supported by collaboration with PEMSEA’s ICM Sites and with the other PEMSEA networks. At local, national, and regional levels they will be involved in the PEMSEA’s advocacy and campaigns in coordination with the PEMSEA Resource Facility (PRF), becoming ocean champions for their communities, and leaders to other youth.
The PNYL will be headed by the elected PNYL Captain, John Carl Alonsagay, who will represent the Council as a whole. Other elected council members serve as official Country Representatives, and act as contact persons between the PNYL and their respective countries in coordinating and promoting the PEMSEA Youth Programme.
In addition to links to other PEMSEA network, the PEMSEA Youth Programme will undertake further projects, some led by the youth. Knowledge exchange and sharing good practices will be brought together in a youth bulletin. Capacity building will continue, for example through expert-led webinars. A small grants program will support youth-led projects throughout the region.
Throughout the Fifth EAS Youth Forum, youth delegates learnt from experts in the region on topics including issues-based ones such as climate change, and process-based ones such as Project Development. These lessons led to the first output from the PNYL, the 2018 East Asian Youth Declaration on Sustainable Seas and Climate Action. This declaration affirms the understanding of delegates towards the importance of urgently solving the challenges facing our oceans, and lists commitments they make towards playing a role in solving these challenges.
Through the declaration, the PNYL also call upon others, youth and otherwise, to join them in ensuring a sustainable ocean for all. We encourage all to take up their call.