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Global Indigenous Youth Caucus

FAO and indigenous youth working together for Zero Hunger

The Global Indigenous Youth Caucus is comprised of numerous Indigenous youth from various States, organizations, socio-economic and cultural backgrounds. Ever since the first session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII), young indigenous participants have gathered together and developed statements voicing concerns of the youth.

The Global Indigenous Youth Caucus was formally inaugurated in 2006 and has ever since convened during the annual session of the Permanent Forum to discuss the various issues and concerns of indigenous youth worldwide. These discussions led to the collective development and presentation of several statements at the Forum. In 2008, the Permanent Forum and its Secretariat recognized the Global Indigenous Youth Caucus as a working caucus. 

However, much more remains to be done. The continued recruitment, involvement and training of youth from various indigenous peoples communities worldwide are critical for the Forum, along with various indigenous rights mechanisms and organizations, to function in a proper and sustainable manner as generations continue. The full and effective participation of indigenous youth can provide proper representation of the different stakeholders and strengthen cultural exchange of Indigenous youth in the world.

In this context, FAO organized a meeting with the Global Indigenous Youth Caucus from 5 to 8, 2017 to update and incorporate the concerns of indigenous youth in the work of the Organization. The meeting in Rome provided an opportunity for indigenous youth representatives to interact with FAO and to discuss challenges and opportunities, and promote the integration of indigenous peoples – in particular indigenous youth – in FAO’s areas of work. In addition, the GIYC representatives met with more than 19 Permanent Representatives to discuss challenges faced by indigenous youth in the context of food security and agriculture. The meeting resulted in the “Rome Statement”, which includes recommendations regarding UNDRIP and the Sustainable Development Goals.

As the world moves towards the implementation of the 2030 development agenda, it is crucial that the role of indigenous youth in the context of identity, preservation of traditional knowledge, poverty reduction, rights to land, territories and resources, access and protection of their traditional food systems, and sustainable development is acknowledged by all actors and adequately addressed within the SDGs implementation.