29.10.2016, 22:53

Conference on development and sustainability of Youth Councils in Kyrgyzstan kicks off in Osh

OSH, Kyrgyzstan, 29 October 2016 – An OSCE-supported conference on the development and sustainability of Youth Councils in Kyrgyzstan began today in Osh city bringing together some 55 young activists, including the chairpersons and leaders of 13 Territorial Youth Councils of Osh, the Youth Co-ordination Council of Tokmok city, the representatives of seven districts of Osh and activists from Batken, Chui and Jalal-Abad provinces.

Youth Councils informed the representatives of the state bodies and potential partners about the results of their activities carried out from 2011 until 2016 as well as their vision of development as self-sufficient and sustainable municipal structure within the city administration bodies.

“Many young activists involved in the project, already made significant accomplishments in professional and personal lives and became successful entrepreneurs, journalists, artists, athletes and public officials,” said William Leaf, OSCE Senior Field Representative in Osh. “Through the network of Youth Councils, they keep regular communication with each other and promote the ideas of tolerance, peace-building and conflict prevention by carrying out various initiatives in their communities.”

Since 2011, the OSCE Centre in Bishkek has supported activities aimed at strengthening the capacity of youth in Kyrgyzstan, both in the south and the north of the country. The projects ultimately led to the establishment of Youth Councils for young people of Osh and Tokmok cities allowing them to engage in advocacy activities by facilitating inter-ethnic tolerance in their communities. The Youth Councils support project will end in 2016 with a set of identified activities to ensure their full-fledged sustainability.

“The conference gave a great opportunity for us to present our activities to the public and to discuss and plan our future activities independently,” said Islam Akhmedov, the Chairman of the Territorial Youth Council. “During six years with the support from the OSCE Centre in Bishkek we became self-sufficient, sustainable and professional in the field of fundraising, project management and implementation, youth advocacy, inter-ethnic tolerance and conflict resolution activities.”

This event is part of the final component of the OSCE-supported project on promoting inter-ethnic tolerance and capacity for regional co-operation amongst young people, implemented in close co-operation with Youth Affairs Committee under the Osh city Mayor’s Office, Tokmok city Mayor’s Office, State Agency of Youth Affairs, Physical Culture and Sports, as well as IRET and Alga Public Associations.