Day 1 Tuesday 27 September 2011

The Tunza International Children and Youth Conference kicked off on Tuesday 27 September, 2011 attended by over 1400 participants in Bandung, Indonesia. Bridging the skills gap amongst young people through improved education and training was the key message in moving towards a global Green Economy.

The opening ceremony was attended by various dignitaries including Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director, Professor Dr Gusti Muhammed Hatta, Minister of the Environment of Indonesia, Professor Armida Alisjahbana, Minister of National Development Planning of Indonesia, Linda Amalia Sari Gumelar, Minister of Women's Empowerment and Child Protection of Indonesia, Ahmed Heryawan, Governor of Java, Vincent Jugault, Senior Environment and Decent Work Specialist with the International Labour Organization and Yann Arthus-Betrand, internationally-renowned photographer and UNEP Goodwill Ambassador.

In his opening remarks Achim Steiner stressed on the issue of youth employment emerging as a challenge to the global economy and to social stability in countries and communities and how some governments are now factoring youth into green employment and green development strategies as well as education and skills initiatives. He stressed the Rio+20 meeting in June as a central opportunity for the children and youth to send a clear and unequivocal message to world leaders through the Bandung Declaration as an outcome of this week’s conference.

H.E. Professor Gusti Muhammad Hatta, State Minister for the Environment in Indonesia added that green jobs in emerging economies will benefit a broad cross-section of the population, especially young people and the importance of developing new skills and capacities for the future.

UNEP Goodwill Ambassadors Samuel Eto’o and Sara Canning also shared their messages with the delegates. Samuel Eto’o committed to raising the issue of low carbon emissions with FIFA, especially during travel to major football matches.

The afternoon was dedicated to workshops including photography and filming where participants received digital cameras from the Nikon Foundation. During the photography workshop participants were shown portraits of the world’s most endangered species.