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Sixteen young people aged 21 to 26 from across the globe have been invited by the European Commission to take part in the Young Leaders Programme at this year’s European Development Days (EDD 2018). By providing a platform to these young and bright talents, the Young Leaders Programme aims to enrich the debate about gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, the main topic of this year's edition of the EDD.
The 16 young leaders have been chosen for their exceptional skills, expertise and passion to contribute to the debate on sustainable development for all, and in particular for their commitment to gender quality. They will share their unique experiences with EDD 2018 participants in Brussels on 5-6 June.
Chosen among 283 applicants from 82 countries, the sixteen young leaders are all actively engaged in development and social projects in their countries with the aim to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted in 2015 by the international community.
During their stay in the Belgian capital, the Young Leaders will have the opportunity to visit European institutions and participate in workshops, discussions and debates with European Commission policy makers, international leaders, development professionals and representatives of the private sector.
European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, said: "More than half of the world's population today is under the age of 30. It is not enough to work on building a better future for the younger generation. We need to build it with them, give them the stage they need to put their brilliant ideas into practice. I look forward to meeting these inspiring young people during this year's EDD".
This year’s Young Leaders represent a wide range of countries, which include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brazil, El Salvador, Ghana, India, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, the Republic of Congo, Sudan, Sweden, Syria, and Uganda.