At Horn dialogue foundation, we believe that youth issues are better addressed when they are integrated into broader national development policies and programs rather than as stand-alone initiatives. Young people require special attention in all national policies and programs for several reasons. Evidence shows that their exclusion from national development policies and governance structures could demoralize them, undermine social cohesion and lead to social problems such as crime, drug abuse, vandalism, and general alienation in the vicious circle of poverty as it is evident over the last 22 years of civil war in Somalia.
The frustrations of youth have in the past provided excuses for adventurers to derail the process of democratization as was evident in Somalia’s own political history, and also in conflict ravaged countries in the West African sub-region. Thus, any policy for social, political and economic development in Somalia must recognize the importance of youth and youth in promoting social progress, reducing political tension and maximizing economic performance. At Somali Youth Agenda, we are committed to working with the newly endorsed Somali Federal Government and all relevant stakeholders, including youth themselves, to develop youth-inclusive policies and programs at local and national levels that will promote responsive, participative and inclusive governance.