CO-CREATE at Youth4Health event in Tirana
Members of the CO-CREATE Youth Taskforce were delighted to attend the WHO Europe-led Youth4Health - Health and Well-being Forum for Youth” in Tirana, from 25-27 October 2022.
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The principal message from the forum was the importance of raising the profile of youth voices in decision-making at all levels. The upcoming generation of youth are ready and willing to challenge the status quo, and drive impactful change for their future health, including CO-CREATE’s mission to halt the rise in childhood obesity.
The topics on the agenda included the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, mental health and sexual, reproductive health. Within all of these, youth have a role to play and bring insights and experiences that must be spotlighted in the policymaking processes that shape their future.
The Taskforce attendees were in attendance not just as participants, but were also involved in a RolePlay session which led to a discussion with lobbyists, health professionals and decision-makers. This shone a light on various perspectives different actors have, and how decisions around health are made. Such discussions provide the taskforce with the opportunity to explain the ways through which youth can enhance the dialogue around obesity, overweight in adolescents.
CO-CREATE’s Taskforce attendees found it inspiring to be surrounded by fellow youth representatives, all of whom are campaigning for increased youth engagement, having their voice amplified and to be agents of change. Such co-operation shows the potential of youth engagement in evaluating policy actions to promote healthier, more active lifestyles and tackle the obesity epidemic, in line with CO-CREATE’s research.
The event was held in partnership with the Albanian Ministry of Health and Social Protection, the Albanian Office of the Minister of State for Youth and Children, the Municipality of Tirana and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
You can read a postcard blog piece from the Youth Taskforce attendees on the Healthy Voices site here.