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                      TUNIS DECLARATION 
 
PREAMBLE 
 
1.  We,  young  North  Africans,  participating  in  the  North  Africa‐n  Development  Forum 
held  in  Tunis  (Tunisia)  from  December  8th  to  10th,  2011,  on  "Youth,  actors  of 
Development in North Africa";  
 
2.  Noting  the  situation  of  youth,  their  expectations,  as  well  as  the  challenges  and 
prospects facing youth, in particular those who are most vulnerable in the region;  
 
3. Aware of youth’s role and place in any development process and youth related issues 
which are at stake for the future of North African societies, but also of the opportunities 
and the constraints they face; 
 
4. Aware of the importance of the transitional phase experienced by the region; 
 
5.  Enriched  by  the  lessons  learned,  among  other  things,  from  the  experiences  which 
could  (i)  favor  a  real  youth  participation  in  political  life,  community  life  and  economic 
life, (ii) involve more the youth in the protection of the environment protection and in 
achieving sustainable development, (iii) take up the challenge of youth employment, (iv) 
improve youth vision about regional integration and cooperation, as well as the need to 
further involve them in this process; 
 
6.  Aware  of  the  numerous  constraints  which  hinder  youth  development,  and 
consequently, that of their countries, namely the insufficiency of the education system 
and  mainly  its  inadequacy  with  the  demands  of  both  the  labour  market  and  the 
economy  of  the  high  youth  unemployment  rates,  of  the  lack  of  dialogue  frameworks 
and structures, both with adults and decision‐makers at all levels, limiting therefore the 
possibilities and means for youth to express their needs and their expectations; 
                                                  1
 
7. Noting the l modest results, still, of the efforts made by North African governments in 
order to better integrate youth concerns in public policies; 
 
8. Aware of the problems that youth in the region  are still faced with,  and of the need 
to maximize youth contribution to a development based  on peace, democracy, respect 
of human rights, gender equality, sustainable and regional development. 
         
I. We commit ourselves to: 

   •   Promote  a  culture  of    integration  and  strengthening  of  regional  solidarity  ,  by 
       creating  and  networking  associations  to    support  the  regional  integration 
       process;  
        
   •   Promote  a  culture  of  peace,  tolerance  and  solidarity  between  nationals  and 
       citizens  from  other  countries  of  the  sub‐region,  in  particular  in  the  context  of 
       political unrest  or tensions between States;  
        
   •   Put    our  intelligence  and  creativity  to  contribution  in  order  to  facilitate  our 
       involvement in active life so as to achieve our own fulfillment and   contribute to 
       the welfare of our societies;  
        
   •   Endeavour to make our voice heard and participate actively in the political life of 
       our country. 
 
II. We declare that: 
 
A.      North African governments should:  
 
1.      Youth and participation  
 
     a) Review  processes aiming at promoting  youth participation in the elaboration of 
        the region’s political agendas( like this Forum for example) by: 
            1. Implementing participatory  models which facilitate the dissemination of   
                youth knowledge and experience in our region; 
            2. Creating  spaces  of  exchange    and  discussions  for  both  young  and  older 
                actors who are involved; 
            3. Avoiding  that  the  transfer  of  experts’  knowledge  preempt  participation, 
                facilitation of exchange and political innovation.   
                 
     b) Put in place  mechanisms that allow for  a more inclusive participation of youth 
        and adolescents in  youth   "multisectoral" policy development process;  
         
     c) Favour  the  insertion  of  modules  on    citizenship  education  in  school  and 
        university curricula;  

                                                2
 
      d) Revise  youth  policies  whenever  this  is  applicable  ,    in  order  to  make  them 
         compatible with the requirements of an effective participation of all the actors 
         involved  in  its  implementation,  or  develop  youth  policies  in  case  they  are 
         missing; 
                                                                                           
      e) Ensure that youth do participate in apolitical,  economic and community life at 
         the legislative level;  
          
      f) Encourage the creation of youth organizations and contribute to sponsoring their 
         effective functioning; 
                                                                                           
      g) Invest  in  local  youth  activities  and  establish  an  institutional  mechanism  at  the 
         regional level to finance local youth initiatives; 
                                                                                           
      h) Progress  towards  gender  equality by  encouraging  the  participation  of  Maghreb 
         young women at all levels of the decision‐making process; 
                                                                                           
      i) Find  the  way  to  involve  associations  with  the  biggest  number  and  not  to  be 
         limited to the young members of associations.  
 
2.        Youth and employment 
 
      a) Introduce  employment  in all economic and social policies that  aim  to increase 
         the offer of  quality labour  through : 
              1. investing in training and education structures for a better coaching;  
              2. improving the quality of training and education. 
                           
      b) Encourage  youth  initiatives  for  their  insertion  in  the  labor  market  through  
         facilitating  their  funding  by  public  and  private  financial  institutions  such  as  for 
         instance  the  Young  Entrepreneur  Foundations  or  the  Young  Entrepreneurs 
         Centers; 
          
      c) Maintain  gains achieved in the area of young women’s employment  and orient 
         these more and more towards scientific and technical branches; 
                                                                                             
      d) offer study and training grants  to encourage  exchange of competences;  
                                                                                             
      e) Reform  tax  policies  to  support    companies  which  recruit  youth  in  promising 
         sectors  and  which  support  and  finance  young  entrepreneurs  (start‐up 
         incubators); 
                                                                                             
      f) Facilitate access to decent work for  youth in  general and for  most  vulnerable 
         groups in particular; 
                                                                                             

                                                   3
g) Suggest  to  the  UN  the  creation  of  a  fund  to  finance  youth  access  to  new 
         technologies; 
                                                                                               
    h) Develop training programmes or set up training centers to coach youth and build 
       the capacities of marginalized and vulnerable youth.  
            
3.     Youth and sustainable development  
 
    a) Promote  dialogue  with    youth  and  their  participation  in  the  decision‐making 
       process in the areas of  environment and sustainable development, at all levels 
       (local, national, regional and international), in accordance with the provisions of  
       Agenda 21; 
             
      b) Involve    youth  in  the  implementation  of  development  activities  and  programs 
         taking  into  consideration  youth  initiatives  and  their  capacity  of  mobilization 
         which should be articulated with Governments' action;  
                                                                                               
      c) Reinforce  youth‐local collectivities partnerships;  
                                                                                               
      d) Mainstream    sensitization  to  sustainable  development  in  all  educational 
         programs and include targeted modules in university programs;   
                                                                                               
      e) Establish  a  regional  institution  run    by    youth  which  mission  is  to  promote  
         sustainable  development  policies  and  civil  society    programs  for  sustainable 
         development; 
                                                                                               
      f) Launch sensitization campaigns to promote sustainable consumption patterns.   
 
4.         Youth and regional integration  
            
      a)   Create one single strong network which can gather young North African leaders. 
           These  could benefit   from capacity‐building programmes;  
            
      b)   Invest  in  the  innovating  local  initiatives  and  support  them  thanks  to  a  regional 
           funding  mechanism; 
                                                                                               
      c)   Remove  the  obstacles  hindering  the  construction  of  a  really  integrated  and 
           performing  economic  space  in  North  Africa,  in  order  to  optimize  trade, 
           investment and employment opportunities in the sub‐region; 
                                                                                               
      d)   Implement  objectives  and  apply  the  standards  defined  in  regional  treaties, 
           mainly those related to the free movement of people  and properties;  
                                                                                               
      e)   Facilitate  the  participation  of  youth  associations  to  the  elaboration  and 
           management  of  community  law    namely  by  giving  them,  when  possible,  the 
           status  of  observer  in    national  and  regional  structures  in  charge  of  the 
           integration process;  

                                                    4
f) Favor the insertion of a "Community Law" module in university courses to better 
        prepare  future managers for the reinforcement of a culture of integration;  
                                                                                         
    g) Initiate  and  facilitate  the  creation  and  networking  of  youth  associations 
        dedicated to the promotion of community citizenship;  
                                                                                         
    h) Establish a legislation which encourages the youth free movement between the 
        countries of the sub‐region; 
                                                                                         
    i) Establish at the north‐African level an employment scholarship in order to create 
        mechanisms which ensure meeting offers and demands.  
             
5.      Youth and health 
 
a) Promote the principles of youth's right of access to information and to service, mainly 
for the most marginalized groups among them:  
            1. reinforce  sensitization  programs    to  the  impact  of  epidemic  diseases, 
                which  still  plague  our  region,  such  as  leishmaniosis,  tuberculosis,    HIV/ 
                AIDS...  by a greater  involvement of the media (radio and television), and 
                by focusing in particular on rural areas;  
                 
            2. Develop  and  implement  sexual  education  programs  and  integrate  them 
                in national educational programs 
 
b) Allow a better access to medical care for youth: 
         
    1. ensure  free  access  to  medical  diagnosis  and  to  medical  care  for  the  young 
        victims of the above‐mentioned epidemic diseases; 
    2. revise the youth health insurance system in order to allow them a better access 
        to medical care;  
    3. improve  women’s  access  to  medical  care  and  support  ad  maintain  gains 
        achieved in family planning (contraception, abortion...). 
         
c) Reinforce the fight against smoking and drug consumption;  
 
d) Support road safety programs (road accidents are the first causes of death among the 
young).  
             
             
             
             
             
             
             
             

                                                 5
6.       Youth, media and social networks   
 
      a) Reinforce the place of youth in the public and private media (both at the level of 
         recruitment and programming);  
          
      b) Reinforce  the  existing  virtual  platforms  and  create  new  ones,  gathering  young 
         people who are member of associations or active within one of the youth issues 
         in  the  North  African  region:  classify  (by  theme,  country...)  and  keep  them 
         updated; 
                                                                                        
      c) Encourage governments to allow you an easy access to new technologies in the 
         deprived areas; 
                                                                                        
    d) Reinforce and encourage the new expression means which are presently used by 
       the youth, such as music or poetry.  
                        
7.     Statistic data and studies about the youth 
 
    a) Establish documentation centers dedicated to outputs on  youth in the different 
       countries; 
         
    b) Make Youth Observatories accessible to all youth in the sub‐region; 
                                                                                      
    c) Involve  youth  in  designing  questionnaires  and  generating  statistical  data,  but 
       also in disseminating the performed studies.   
            
B.     Private organisms and non‐governmental organizations should:  
        
    a) Set mechanisms to mobilize  youth in favor of sustainable development; 
        
    b) increase  their  ownership  of  existing  treaties,  protocols  and  programs  on 
       integration  in North Africa; 
                                                                                      
    c) Support youth associations in setting up intra North Africa networks; 
         
    d) Inform  youth  about  project  opportunities  and  adapt  these  to  their  needs  and 
       expectations. 
            
C      Regional groups such as ISESCO and sub‐regional such as UMA should:  
 
    a) Support establishing youth networks to share experiences and best practices;  
        
    b) Finance or help  countries mobilize resources which are necessary for financing 
       youth initiatives; 
                                                                                      
    c) Involve youth as partners and not only as a public targeted by the programs.  

                                                6
 
D.     the ECA and other concerned organisms of the United Nations system such as 
       UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA, etc. should:  
 
    a) Support  member  countries  and  the  RECs  to  effectively  mainstream 
        environmental and social issues in development strategies and programs;  
         
    b) Allow youth access to UNV programs design and participation; 
                                                                                     
    c) Involve  the vulnerable youth who have experiences to share in  programs,  but 
        also in the formulation and implementation  of these volunteering programs; 
                                                                                     
    d) Favor the UNV presence in the biggest number of North African countries; 
                                                                                     
    e) Reinforce  regional  cooperation  to  increase    knowledge  and  transfer  of 
        technologies; 
                                                                                     
    f) Favor youth participation in  international and regional conferences; 
                                                                                     
    g) Support  the  development  of  indicators  which  could  measure  sustainable 
        development; through training addressed to young people from deprived areas; 
                                                                                     
    h) Establish  youth  information  and  capacity  building  programs  on  sustainable 
        development; 
                                                                                     
    i) Include the ecological issues  in the internal policy of UN agencies by revising the 
        communication  products  in  order  to  make  them  more  respectful  of  the 
        environment; 
                                                                                     
    j) Encourage and promote "green jobs" for youth (mainly in rural areas), through 
        an  effective  training,  and  offer  them  a  real  opportunity  for  lasting  and 
        meaningful jobs.  
             
By  adopting  this  Declaration,  we,  the  young,  ,  participating  at  the  North  African 
Development  Forum  "Youth,  Actors  of  Development  in  North  Africa    ",  commit 
ourselves to implementing  its recommendations and, in this regard, ask  the ECA  and  
relevant  institutions  to  establish  appropriate  mechanisms  to  implement,  follow‐up, 
and  update  these  recommendations.  We  therefore  demand  that  a  preliminary  study 
be carried out within 6 months and a detailed study within one year. 
 
We  are  deeply  grateful  to  the  Tunisian  Government  and  people  for  their  warm  and 
friendly welcome. 
 
 



                                             7

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Tunis Declaration Youth Development North Africa

  • 1.     TUNIS DECLARATION    PREAMBLE    1.  We,  young  North  Africans,  participating  in  the  North  Africa‐n  Development  Forum  held  in  Tunis  (Tunisia)  from  December  8th  to  10th,  2011,  on  "Youth,  actors  of  Development in North Africa";     2.  Noting  the  situation  of  youth,  their  expectations,  as  well  as  the  challenges  and  prospects facing youth, in particular those who are most vulnerable in the region;     3. Aware of youth’s role and place in any development process and youth related issues  which are at stake for the future of North African societies, but also of the opportunities  and the constraints they face;    4. Aware of the importance of the transitional phase experienced by the region;    5.  Enriched  by  the  lessons  learned,  among  other  things,  from  the  experiences  which  could  (i)  favor  a  real  youth  participation  in  political  life,  community  life  and  economic  life, (ii) involve more the youth in the protection of the environment protection and in  achieving sustainable development, (iii) take up the challenge of youth employment, (iv)  improve youth vision about regional integration and cooperation, as well as the need to  further involve them in this process;    6.  Aware  of  the  numerous  constraints  which  hinder  youth  development,  and  consequently, that of their countries, namely the insufficiency of the education system  and  mainly  its  inadequacy  with  the  demands  of  both  the  labour  market  and  the  economy  of  the  high  youth  unemployment  rates,  of  the  lack  of  dialogue  frameworks  and structures, both with adults and decision‐makers at all levels, limiting therefore the  possibilities and means for youth to express their needs and their expectations;  1
  • 2.   7. Noting the l modest results, still, of the efforts made by North African governments in  order to better integrate youth concerns in public policies;    8. Aware of the problems that youth in the region  are still faced with,  and of the need  to maximize youth contribution to a development based  on peace, democracy, respect  of human rights, gender equality, sustainable and regional development.    I. We commit ourselves to:  • Promote  a  culture  of    integration  and  strengthening  of  regional  solidarity  ,  by  creating  and  networking  associations  to    support  the  regional  integration  process;     • Promote  a  culture  of  peace,  tolerance  and  solidarity  between  nationals  and  citizens  from  other  countries  of  the  sub‐region,  in  particular  in  the  context  of  political unrest  or tensions between States;     • Put    our  intelligence  and  creativity  to  contribution  in  order  to  facilitate  our  involvement in active life so as to achieve our own fulfillment and   contribute to  the welfare of our societies;     • Endeavour to make our voice heard and participate actively in the political life of  our country.    II. We declare that:    A.  North African governments should:     1.  Youth and participation     a) Review  processes aiming at promoting  youth participation in the elaboration of  the region’s political agendas( like this Forum for example) by:  1. Implementing participatory  models which facilitate the dissemination of    youth knowledge and experience in our region;  2. Creating  spaces  of  exchange    and  discussions  for  both  young  and  older  actors who are involved;  3. Avoiding  that  the  transfer  of  experts’  knowledge  preempt  participation,  facilitation of exchange and political innovation.      b) Put in place  mechanisms that allow for  a more inclusive participation of youth  and adolescents in  youth   "multisectoral" policy development process;     c) Favour  the  insertion  of  modules  on    citizenship  education  in  school  and  university curricula;   2
  • 3.   d) Revise  youth  policies  whenever  this  is  applicable  ,    in  order  to  make  them  compatible with the requirements of an effective participation of all the actors  involved  in  its  implementation,  or  develop  youth  policies  in  case  they  are  missing;    e) Ensure that youth do participate in apolitical,  economic and community life at  the legislative level;     f) Encourage the creation of youth organizations and contribute to sponsoring their  effective functioning;    g) Invest  in  local  youth  activities  and  establish  an  institutional  mechanism  at  the  regional level to finance local youth initiatives;    h) Progress  towards  gender  equality by  encouraging  the  participation  of  Maghreb  young women at all levels of the decision‐making process;    i) Find  the  way  to  involve  associations  with  the  biggest  number  and  not  to  be  limited to the young members of associations.     2.  Youth and employment    a) Introduce  employment  in all economic and social policies that  aim  to increase  the offer of  quality labour  through :  1. investing in training and education structures for a better coaching;   2. improving the quality of training and education.    b) Encourage  youth  initiatives  for  their  insertion  in  the  labor  market  through   facilitating  their  funding  by  public  and  private  financial  institutions  such  as  for  instance  the  Young  Entrepreneur  Foundations  or  the  Young  Entrepreneurs  Centers;    c) Maintain  gains achieved in the area of young women’s employment  and orient  these more and more towards scientific and technical branches;    d) offer study and training grants  to encourage  exchange of competences;     e) Reform  tax  policies  to  support    companies  which  recruit  youth  in  promising  sectors  and  which  support  and  finance  young  entrepreneurs  (start‐up  incubators);    f) Facilitate access to decent work for  youth in  general and for  most  vulnerable  groups in particular;    3
  • 4. g) Suggest  to  the  UN  the  creation  of  a  fund  to  finance  youth  access  to  new  technologies;    h) Develop training programmes or set up training centers to coach youth and build  the capacities of marginalized and vulnerable youth.     3.  Youth and sustainable development     a) Promote  dialogue  with    youth  and  their  participation  in  the  decision‐making  process in the areas of  environment and sustainable development, at all levels  (local, national, regional and international), in accordance with the provisions of   Agenda 21;     b) Involve    youth  in  the  implementation  of  development  activities  and  programs  taking  into  consideration  youth  initiatives  and  their  capacity  of  mobilization  which should be articulated with Governments' action;     c) Reinforce  youth‐local collectivities partnerships;     d) Mainstream    sensitization  to  sustainable  development  in  all  educational  programs and include targeted modules in university programs;      e) Establish  a  regional  institution  run    by    youth  which  mission  is  to  promote   sustainable  development  policies  and  civil  society    programs  for  sustainable  development;    f) Launch sensitization campaigns to promote sustainable consumption patterns.      4.  Youth and regional integration     a) Create one single strong network which can gather young North African leaders.  These  could benefit   from capacity‐building programmes;     b) Invest  in  the  innovating  local  initiatives  and  support  them  thanks  to  a  regional  funding  mechanism;    c) Remove  the  obstacles  hindering  the  construction  of  a  really  integrated  and  performing  economic  space  in  North  Africa,  in  order  to  optimize  trade,  investment and employment opportunities in the sub‐region;    d) Implement  objectives  and  apply  the  standards  defined  in  regional  treaties,  mainly those related to the free movement of people  and properties;     e) Facilitate  the  participation  of  youth  associations  to  the  elaboration  and  management  of  community  law    namely  by  giving  them,  when  possible,  the  status  of  observer  in    national  and  regional  structures  in  charge  of  the  integration process;   4
  • 5. f) Favor the insertion of a "Community Law" module in university courses to better  prepare  future managers for the reinforcement of a culture of integration;     g) Initiate  and  facilitate  the  creation  and  networking  of  youth  associations  dedicated to the promotion of community citizenship;     h) Establish a legislation which encourages the youth free movement between the  countries of the sub‐region;    i) Establish at the north‐African level an employment scholarship in order to create  mechanisms which ensure meeting offers and demands.     5.  Youth and health    a) Promote the principles of youth's right of access to information and to service, mainly  for the most marginalized groups among them:   1. reinforce  sensitization  programs    to  the  impact  of  epidemic  diseases,  which  still  plague  our  region,  such  as  leishmaniosis,  tuberculosis,    HIV/  AIDS...  by a greater  involvement of the media (radio and television), and  by focusing in particular on rural areas;     2. Develop  and  implement  sexual  education  programs  and  integrate  them  in national educational programs    b) Allow a better access to medical care for youth:    1. ensure  free  access  to  medical  diagnosis  and  to  medical  care  for  the  young  victims of the above‐mentioned epidemic diseases;  2. revise the youth health insurance system in order to allow them a better access  to medical care;   3. improve  women’s  access  to  medical  care  and  support  ad  maintain  gains  achieved in family planning (contraception, abortion...).    c) Reinforce the fight against smoking and drug consumption;     d) Support road safety programs (road accidents are the first causes of death among the  young).                   5
  • 6. 6.  Youth, media and social networks      a) Reinforce the place of youth in the public and private media (both at the level of  recruitment and programming);     b) Reinforce  the  existing  virtual  platforms  and  create  new  ones,  gathering  young  people who are member of associations or active within one of the youth issues  in  the  North  African  region:  classify  (by  theme,  country...)  and  keep  them  updated;    c) Encourage governments to allow you an easy access to new technologies in the  deprived areas;    d) Reinforce and encourage the new expression means which are presently used by  the youth, such as music or poetry.         7.  Statistic data and studies about the youth    a) Establish documentation centers dedicated to outputs on  youth in the different  countries;     b) Make Youth Observatories accessible to all youth in the sub‐region;    c) Involve  youth  in  designing  questionnaires  and  generating  statistical  data,  but  also in disseminating the performed studies.      B.  Private organisms and non‐governmental organizations should:     a) Set mechanisms to mobilize  youth in favor of sustainable development;    b) increase  their  ownership  of  existing  treaties,  protocols  and  programs  on  integration  in North Africa;    c) Support youth associations in setting up intra North Africa networks;     d) Inform  youth  about  project  opportunities  and  adapt  these  to  their  needs  and  expectations.    C  Regional groups such as ISESCO and sub‐regional such as UMA should:     a) Support establishing youth networks to share experiences and best practices;     b) Finance or help  countries mobilize resources which are necessary for financing  youth initiatives;    c) Involve youth as partners and not only as a public targeted by the programs.   6
  • 7.   D.  the ECA and other concerned organisms of the United Nations system such as  UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA, etc. should:     a) Support  member  countries  and  the  RECs  to  effectively  mainstream  environmental and social issues in development strategies and programs;     b) Allow youth access to UNV programs design and participation;    c) Involve  the vulnerable youth who have experiences to share in  programs,  but  also in the formulation and implementation  of these volunteering programs;    d) Favor the UNV presence in the biggest number of North African countries;    e) Reinforce  regional  cooperation  to  increase    knowledge  and  transfer  of  technologies;    f) Favor youth participation in  international and regional conferences;    g) Support  the  development  of  indicators  which  could  measure  sustainable  development; through training addressed to young people from deprived areas;    h) Establish  youth  information  and  capacity  building  programs  on  sustainable  development;    i) Include the ecological issues  in the internal policy of UN agencies by revising the  communication  products  in  order  to  make  them  more  respectful  of  the  environment;    j) Encourage and promote "green jobs" for youth (mainly in rural areas), through  an  effective  training,  and  offer  them  a  real  opportunity  for  lasting  and  meaningful jobs.     By  adopting  this  Declaration,  we,  the  young,  ,  participating  at  the  North  African  Development  Forum  "Youth,  Actors  of  Development  in  North  Africa    ",  commit  ourselves to implementing  its recommendations and, in this regard, ask  the ECA  and   relevant  institutions  to  establish  appropriate  mechanisms  to  implement,  follow‐up,  and  update  these  recommendations.  We  therefore  demand  that  a  preliminary  study  be carried out within 6 months and a detailed study within one year.    We  are  deeply  grateful  to  the  Tunisian  Government  and  people  for  their  warm  and  friendly welcome.      7