Delegates: Ms. Katerina Lovtchinova (24 years), Ms. Stefani Borislavova Simeonova (18 years)
13. Ms. Simeonova (Bulgaria), speaking as a youth delegate, said that Bulgaria had been committed to youth matters and was one of the few countries that had a programme allowing young people to participate in the drafting of youth-related resolutions at the highest level. All young people should be provided with an education according to their abilities, interest and needs, and the quality of education needed to be improved worldwide, as many young people did not have the necessary knowledge or qualification upon graduation and often ended up unemployed. Education fostered global development, and should be a priority for all countries.
14. The Government of Bulgaria had a national education policy which aimed to increase school participation. It recognized that improving the quality of education would improve the country situation overall and stimulate the economy, leading to stability and turning knowledge and innovation into the driving force of the economy. Drawing attention to the World Program of Action for Youth, she noted that young people were influential and had the potential to transform a nation. They needed to be included in national decision-making processes and their views must be taken into consideration, particularly in matters affecting them. Regrettably, most Governments ignored youth in the preparation or implementation of youth policies, leaving many young people feeling undermined, which often created tension in society and could result in violence and crime. It was thus important to recognize them as skilled, powerful individuals capable of devising effective solutions. Giving young people a chance to express their views made them feel confident, aware of their duties in society, and gave them a purpose, encouraging them to become active members of a democratic society.
15. Ms. Lovtchinova (Bulgaria), speaking as a youth delegate, said that while Bulgaria’s progress in developing its youth delegates programme was noteworthy, more needed to be done to address the major problems facing youth in the country, such as the growing time lag between graduation and employment and the inefficiency of school career centres. That could be addressed by including more practical training [*4*] courses and extracurricular activities to help young people to develop the social, professional and technological skills required on the job market, and by enhancing communication between the employment and educational sectors.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/66/SR.4