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UN General Assembly adopted a Resolution 64/134 proclaiming the International Year of Youth, from 12 August 2010 to 11 August 2011, under the theme International Year of Youth: Dialogue and Mutual Understanding. 

The Year aimed to disseminate among young people the ideals of peace, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, solidarity and dedication to the objectives of development, and to encourage the young people's energy, enthusiasm and creativity  to economic, social and cultural development and the promotion of mutual understanding. 

The Year aimed to generate much needed attention for youth development and to provide an impetus among youth organizations to form partnerships and foster dedication to achieve the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals.

The UN Inter-Agency Network on Youth Development  coordinated the activities of the UN system for the Year, with the UN Programme on Youth leading this effort and adopted the UN Framework Approach for the International Year of Youth with the following objectives: 

  • Create awareness » Increase commitment and investment in youth

- Increase recognition of youth development as a smart investment by the public and private sectors
- Advocate for the recognition of young people’s contributions to national and community development and to achieving the Millennium Development Goals
- Promote understanding of inequalities amongst youth and how to effectively address the needs of the most disadvantaged
- Foster research and knowledge building on youth to better inform youth policies and programmes

  • Mobilize and engage » Increase youth participation and partnerships

- Institutionalize mechanisms for youth participation in decision-making processes
- Support youth-led organizations and initiatives to enhance their contribution to society
- Strengthen networks and partnerships among Governments, youth-led organizations, academia, civil society organizations, the private sector, the media and the UN system, to enhance commitment and support for holistic youth development

  • Connect and build bridges » Increase intercultural understanding among youth

- Promote youth interactions, networks and partnerships across cultures
- Empower and support youth as agents of social inclusion and peace