Climate change and unemployment to top this year's global peace conference agenda

A man ferries plastic waste to a weighing bay in Kibra, Nairobi. [Denish Ochieng, Standard] 

Youth unemployment and climate change will top this year’s Global Peace Conference agenda, organisers have announced. 

Secretary Peace Building and Conflict Management in the Office of National Cohesion and Values, Beverly Moss noted that climate change has a direct impact on peace, calling on stakeholders to re-instill values, especially among the youth to solve today’s problems. 

“Climate is linked to peace. It causes drought and hunger and communities scramble for resources,” she stated. 

“Society as a whole, we’ve thrown values out of the window,” she added, urging the public to conserve the environment and value their communities. 

Climate education, they said, will also be part of the discussion as it plays a role in building an environmental conservation culture. 

“We have developed a climate education curriculum that awaits approval by the government to help nurture the culture of green agenda among children,’’ said Teddy Warria, Director, Climate Advocates Voces Unidas (CAVU), which runs the annual Climate Innovation Challenge (CIC).

Speaking on Friday during a partners’ roundtable meeting, the country’s Global Peace Foundation-Kenya patron Manu Chandaria said joblessness in the country is a concern that needs to be addressed.  

The founder of Chandaria Foundation, GPF partner, implored the youths of the country to seize the opportunities presented by this year’s Global Peace and Leadership Conference slated for Nairobi between June 25 to 27.

“This year’s conference will focus on networking to find solutions for youth unemployment in the country as well as at the global level,” he said. 

This will be the third time that the conference will be held in Kenya. The first time was in 2010, then in 2020 (virtual conference) and the third this June.

The Friday Luncheon brought together partners including global peacemakers, inter-religious organisations, all sector groups, Civil Society organisations and community groups, among others. 

They rallied a call for financial support from stakeholders and peace agencies towards the success of the summit. 

According to the organisers, the June forum will focus on the African Renaissance and ways to promote peace that are crucial in, among others, transforming education, environment and leadership. 

“Being the largest population, the conference seeks to address challenges that are a deterrent to youth progress. Engaging them in peace-building and planting trees for green agenda involves part of the initiatives,” Global Peace Foundation Director Daniel Juma said. 

European Union Ambassador to Kenya Henriette Geiger said that climate change cannot be fought if there’s conflict.

“The wars lead to dwindling resources and massive displacement of people...they are very much interconnected,” she added. 

She added that the lack of jobs has resulted in mental health problems among the youth.

“The EU has heavily invested in the initiative for the reason that the majority of the population is young,” she said. 

The EU envoy also announced that the organisation will hold a sports tournament and engage them in tree planting on the sideline of the GPC event in a bid to lobby for opportunities for them.