Youth Engagement for Entrepreneurship

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Turning the spotlight on ‘youth engagement’ on International Youth Day (August 12) – sheatwork emphasizes how engaging youth as entrepreneurs can help build economic & cultural value.

The United Nations has designated International Youth Day, and the purpose of the day is to draw attention to a given set of cultural and legal issues surrounding youth. The theme of International Youth Day 2021“Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health”, which highlights the fact that the success of such a global effort cannot be achieved without substantial participation of young people.

Youth can play a crucial role

In positively affecting the sustainable development goals, youth can play a vital role. Unfortunately, it has often happened that the importance of youth engagement and empowerment has been brushed aside, by the top decision-makers; plus, youth have been ignored through all tiers of economic and sociopolitical spectrums. So, the time has come for an overhaul of policymaking which will give open up new opportunities for young people, not just in India but globally too. By allowing them to actively participate in all relevant levels of the decision-making process, it will give them the credit they deserve, considering that those decisions not only affect their present lives but their future as well. Empowered youth are responsible citizens, professionals and leaders who are positively shaping and affecting the future through navigating and managing the complexities of global challenges.

Entrepreneurship undoubtedly plays a critical role in developing and fostering a robust socio-economic culture in any economy. Strong entrepreneurial initiatives can drive fresh blood into any economy; it is seen that healthy entrepreneurial activities result in creating more employment opportunities, better working prospects and societal development. And, engaging youth as entrepreneurs can help build economic and cultural value, as young people learn skills and develop knowledge that contributes to their communities in unique ways.

In fact, youth entrepreneurship offers innovative solutions for economic growth among young people. But youth enterprise initiatives are still relatively new to global development. How can programmes best support sustainable youth entrepreneurship? What can be considered good tools for youth that can spike social change through entrepreneurship?

One of the most powerful tools for engaging young people as entrepreneurs is – education and learning. It doesn’t matter whether it happens through mentorships, schools, family relations or the local library, young people can set the ball rolling for a new system. They can learn how to start businesses, operate in the economy, expand their wealth and build their mindsets in order to become and maintain entrepreneurship in their lives.

A powerful tool for social change is – creating a launchpad of opportunities for youth entrepreneurship. These activities, whether youth business incubators, startup weekends, or economic development classes, can all transform youth and adults, and change communities forever.

And, lastly, having entrepreneurs as mentors – can allow youth to expand their knowledge, learn from challenges faced by leaders, and build their self-reliance. Interestingly, at the same time, youth can share their wisdom, knowledge, and ideas by engaging with successful entrepreneurs, too.

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