The Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) believes the issues of indigenous children and young people are so important it decided to make indigenous children and youth a focus in its work for years to come.
A brochure on Indigenous Children, Youth and the Permanent Forum.
Click on the image on the left to download the brochure
The world’s indigenous children and youth face many problems:
• Lack of healthcare services
• Environmental pollution
• Traffic and sexual exploitation
• Massive migration towards the cities
• HIV/ AIDS
• Incarceration and lack of legal protection
• Armed conflict
• Forced relocation and loss of land
• Illiteracy and drop-out rates
• Lack of culturally appropriated education
UNPFII made indigenous children and youth the main theme of its second session (2002).
Why get involved?
More young indigenous people are needed at the meeting and in the work of the Forum to give their own views of the world in which they live. In this way, you can help to shape the advice the Permanent Forum gives to UN agencies, especially concerning indigenous youth.
At the Permanent Forum's annual May session, the programmes, funds and agencies of the United Nations, which deal with indigenous peoples report on their activities. These activities across the UN system cover areas like health, education, community development, the environment. culture and heritage, human rights, and poverty.
Indigenous peoples have, for a long time insisted that UN agencies make indigenous youth a priority. These agencies now report on specific youth initiatives.
Gathering the UN agencies together every year helps the Permanent Forum to monitor - year by year - the broad directions these agencies take, largely independently of each other. In this way, recommendations flowing from the Permanent Forum meeting promote better integration and coordination of indigenous issues, including youth issues, across the UN system.
And when you return to your homes after the meeting to share your experiences, what you have learned, and what you have contributed, you help the Permanent Forum's efforts to disseminate more information about its work.
How can I get involved?
At this web site you can find information on when each session is held, where, visa requirements, registration details, the agenda and information papers for the meeting, reports and recommendations from previous meetings.
Some funding is available specifically for indigenous participation, including youth, in the Permanent Forum meeting. If you are interested in applying for funding, click here.
You will need to get organized a long time in advance because funding for meetings must be considered in the year before the meeting is held (applications close 1st October in the year before the meeting).
Secretary-General conveys urgency
The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, conveyed a sense of urgency in solving the problems faced by indigenous children. Giving a speech on indigenous children in 2004 at Cuzco, Peru - a sacred site for indigenous peoples - Mr Annan called on the world to listen to indigenous children's voices.
Secretary-General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan said:
"Indigenous peoples are not simply asking the world for assistance, but are also contributing to humanity and diversity with their knowledge and their rich cultures and languages that are part of our global heritage."
What can the Permanent Forum do for indigenous children and youth?
In its official role of providing advice and making recommendations to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the UN system and others, it can raise awareness by highlighting their situation and it can contribute to the betterment of their circumstances through the actions it recommends and coordinates.
The Permanent Forum bases its recommendations on some keys points:
• Free, prior and informed consent LINK
• Data collection and disaggregation LINK
• Specific policies and programmes
• Access and knowledge of international human rights mechanisms and national procedures
• Capacity building
• Full participation at local, national and international levels
• Development with identity
• Intercultural and bilingual education
• Holistic health programmes
Employment opportunities at the United Nations for young people:
Young Professionals Programme
Junior Professionals are recruited through the Young professionals programme (YPP). The YPP is a recruitment initiative that brings new talent to the United Nations through an annual entrance examination. For young, high-calibre professionals across the globe, the examination is a platform for launching a career at the United Nations. This programme builds upon the national competitive recruitment examination (NCRE) which was held for the last time in 2010.
For more information on the Young Professionals Programme please visit:
Other websites posting international jobs:
- UN Careers (the main portal for employment opportunities at the UN)