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IDB and UNESCO award best practices in youth policies and programs
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) presented awards to 31 leaders from governments and civil society organizations in recognition of successful practices in youth policies and programs.

The awards – sponsored by the IDB Youth Program and the Social Protection and Health Unit, and the United Nations Education, Science and Culture Organization (UNESCO), with the support of more than a dozen international development organizations, the Mexican government, and the IDB-managed Korea Poverty Reduction Fund – were awarded during the Regional Forum on Best Practices in Youth Policies and Programs in the city of Puerto Vallarta, in Jalisco state, Mexico.

The winners – from 16 different countries in Latin America, the Caribbean and the United States – were selected for the success achieved in designing and implementing youth policies and programs in areas of education, sexual and reproductive health, poverty reduction, volunteerism, youth participation, prevention of violence and comprehensive youth development. The identification and exchange of best practices will help strengthen the development of creative initiatives that offer a real and positive benefit to youth in Latin America and the Caribbean.

There is a direct relation between the youths’ wellbeing and access to opportunities and developmental advances in the region, said IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno. “We want to keep promoting the energy, ingenuity and hard work of the youth sector, and explore initiatives and policies that promote their role not just as beneficiaries but also as leaders and agents of change.”

During the forum, participants presented their projects, sharing the methodology used and best practices, lessons learned and the replicability of the policies and programs in the region. Success was determined by impact, efficiency, and relevance from the point of view “by, for, and with youth.”

Some 800 organizations from the government, private sector, and public are registered in the best practices platform. A committee of 57 international experts selected the 31 best practices and 11 honorable mentions. The Korean Poverty Reduction Fund – administered by the IDB – helped carry out the project.

The Bank created the IDB Youth program to support the construction of stable democracies, sustainable economies and societies based on equality, and to respond more effectively to the needs of youth.

The program promotes the participation of youth in Latin America and the Caribbean in the development process, facilitating opportunities of leadership, community service, volunteerism, access to technology and entrepreneurial development in the world of business and social action.