ITU Young Innovators Competition

The second edition of the ITU Young Innovators Competition competition gives young, talented social entrepreneurs from around the world the opportunity to attend ITU’s key global networking and knowledge-sharing event, ITU Telecom World 2012, and the chance to win funding, mentorship and ongoing high-level support.

Organized within the framework of ITU Telecom World 2012, to be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 14th – 18th October 2012, the competition aims to attract dynamic, socially-committed young people involved in ICT-based concepts or projects with a genuine potential to succeed. Open to 18-25 year olds worldwide, it calls for the submission of projects or concepts, from early-stage ideas to working prototypes, which engage the power of ICTs to meet real-world developmental challenges within one of the eight core areas relevant to this year’s theme of “Youth Innovation for Development”:

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Green Economy Eco-Business Innovation Challenge

The Green Economy Eco-Business Innovations Challenge (GEEBIZ) is a global business innovations challenge for young people to express their vision and entrepreneurship skills and apply them to the building of a green economy. The ultimate goal is to ENCOURAGE young people (up to age 30) to put forward innovative business ideas that can form the building blocks of a new, clean green economy based on renewable energy, resource efficiency, social equity, and the restoration as well as the conservation of the earth’s eco- systems

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Canada World Youth 2012 Leadership Awards

Canada World Youth (CWY) is currently seeking nominations for the 2012 Leadership Awards aimed at recognizing the excellent achievements of young Canadians and youth from around the world that are engaged in innovative initiatives promoting peace, intercultural understanding, and community and international Development. The candidates must be nominated by a third party.

CWY is a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of young people that have a desire to become informed and active global citizens. CWY programs are designed to help youth experience the world for themselves, learn about other cultures and diverse Canadian communities while developing leadership and communication skills.

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Call for Applications: Young Women Knowledge and Leadership Institute in Senegal

African Women’s Millienium Initiative (AWOMI) is organizing the 3rd Young Women Knowledge and Leadership Institute (YOWLI) in Dakar, Senegal over 3 weeks from December 2010 to January 2011. YOWLI was set up to enable young women of African descent to widen their leadership horizons, enhance their knowledge base and actively engage in monitoring and fighting for social justice. YOWLI is a space that supports innovative ideas that challenge anti human rights strategies and propel organizing for social transformation.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Applicants must be African or from the African Diaspora.
  • Applicants must be between 18 – 25 years old by 31 Dec 2010.
  • Tolerance, leadership skills, critical thinking, and creativity
  • Language requirements: the program will be held in English and French (French speaking candidates are expected to have a conversational level of English)
  • Applicants must be affiliated to women or youth lead Non Governmental Organization.

Interested participants must fill out the application form here by 30 May 2010.

Young MPs have failed to nurture a new political order

By Joseph Lister Nyaringo

This  is how Francis Imbuga, a Kenyan playwright captures the events that are unfolding in our Country in his Play Betrayal in the City, “ it was better while we waited, we have killed our past and are busy killing the future”.

After nearly 20 years of acrimonious debate for a new constitutional dispensation, Parliament passed the draft constitution that will be subjected to a national referendum by July 2010.

Contrary to this positive stride, a section of young MPs, who are supposed to be torchbearers to foster a new social, political and economic order led by the Minster for Higher education honourable William Ruto have decided to mobilize Kenyans to reject the draft constitution.

Ruto’s “no” line up includes: Eugene Wamalwa, Isaac Ruto, Cyrus Jirongo, Joshua Kutuny and Peter Munya to mention but a few.  They all have a democratic right to accept or reject the constitution, but their timing is suspect and sinister.

This line up reflects that young people in political circles want our Country to remain in the old order by being ardent protectors of the status quo instead of being catalysts for change and transformative leadership. I’m convinced that majority of young leaders in our Country are more ethnically inclined, self centred and therefore worse than the older politicians.

Last week, a media Columnist, Mr. Barrack Muluka  highlighted how Mr.Eugene Wamalwa, who is also MP for Saboti and one of the youngest MPs in Parliament, urging his community in a vernacular radio, to vote for him so he will get the opportunity to sleep in State House. The legislator is now in the league of President Moi’s political students, William Ruto, Cyrus Jirongo and Isaac Ruto of the YK92 fame. He has joined the duo who sneaked Moi back to power in 1992, not for the Cockerel but to mobilize Kenyans to reject the draft constitution.  What a shame!

By Cyrus Jirongo and William Ruto joining their political mentor former President Moi, in the “ no” camp over the draft constitution, they are sending a message to Kenyans that Kanu’s old styles of running national affairs is blossoming back in full throttle through young leaders.

This is not the first time young leaders have led Kenyans down. In the last elections, Uhuru Kenyatta dethroned himself from leader of official opposition and decided to support Kibaki’s re- election. The Gatundu South MP left about 1.8 Million Kenyans who voted for him in 2002 in suspense and also subjected multiparty politics in dire straits. This was selfish, egocentric and a lack of principles in leadership.

We are tired of leaders who are lackadaisical on issues of national importance but ready to shout when their comfort zones are threatened. Some have become venomous while in their tribal backyards and what comes out of their mouth is incitement, hate and sowing seeds of discord which is a recipe for chaos in our ethnically diverse nation. They have forgotten the rough and tumble Kenyans went through in early 2008.

All politics is local but it’s irrelevant for those with national leadership ambitions to concentrate in their ethnic enclaves. If William Ruto wants to endear himself nationally, he must articulate the interest of all Kenyans, instead of behaving as if he loves his Kalenjin people more than God who created them. Dragging his differences with the Prime Minister to the entire Kalenjin community does not make sense either.

As a young person, I will be the last person to advocate for leadership change or support some one based on their age. One can be 100 years and still stand tall on issues beneficial for the Kenyan people. After all, except honourable John Michuki, majority of the older generation leaders are supporting the new draft constitution which sends a very strong message that they want to bequeath a good country to the young generation. On the other side of the ledger, I’m not trying to imply that all young legislators (MPs) in Kenya are sympathizers of the status quo. There are those who have done very well.

I urge our young legislators to learn from President Obama, whose administration has seized the opportunity to reform key institutions in the US like Heath Care which defeated many presidents before him. On global transformation, he recently unveiled a policy with a target to combat nuclear proliferation as well as a focus to change America’s foreign policy. By and large, he is focusing for greater achievements that reflect a new social, political, and economic order for America.

In Kenya, we have sung “change” for many decades and now we must ignore the young or the old who want to derail us from achieving this end. In fact, many of those now rejecting the new constitutional are doing so to settle political scores or for egocentric reasons.

We all contend that the draft constitution is not free from imperfections and will be amended as needed during the implementation stage. After all; our laws are not cast on stones. Jesus came and was accused of violating the laws of Moses, when he taught on the new Covenant. We have closed the Red Sea, and we are swiftly heading to the Promised Land. Let us not be detoured or derailed Kenyans, let us vote yes for our future and the future of our children.

The writer is based in New Jersey, USA and blogs on

Just how many pirated DVD shops can a city have?

Yesterday we got an interesting comment on an old post Kenya’s Youth Council Bill is merely a means to keep the old guard on top:


I have a suspicion you might be interested in an ongoing blogging discussion between Al Kags ( and Sonia ( The two bloggers are having a debate on their individual blogs (each blogging their response on their own blogs).

The discussion: is national policy in Kenya actually appropriately set to support young people effectively and are the funds available in Kenya being appropriately used to make Kenyan youth successful?

It would be great to see your views (maybe on your blog) on the subject

On reading both posts (sides), here is our two cents worth:

There is absolutely no point in promoting enterprise among the youth unless they are competitive.

Last year regarding the reason why many youth-owned enterprises collapse within 12 months, we posted the following:

“Taking a walk through African cities, one notices that the enterprises being operated by the youth are generally service oriented, and fall within a narrow category of retail business types. There is hardly any manufacturing and even more disturbing is the lack of innovativeness on the part of youth entrepreneurs. Just how many pirated DVD shops can a city have? The answer to that question depends on how many young entrepreneurs there are. This may sound cynical, but if one just strolls through Africa’s business districts patterns of mobile phone accessory shops, small clothing stalls and the emerging number of cramped cyber café’s tell the story of an over-saturation of enterprise but no individual firm growth. It’s no wonder most of these outfits hardly last a year, when the young entrepreneurs venture into the next big thing in small business.”

You can get the full post here

Therefore as well meaning and consultative as the National Youth Policy is, to us at Yipe there is no point in having a policy or National Youth Council or even a Youth Enterprise Fund, for that matter if all we do is regurgitate the same old business ideas.

So even though as Sonia says “the National Youth Policy did to help organize young people and more importantly those who support youth led development” at the end of the day the only realistic youth development policy is (to put it crudely) the one that puts enough money in their pockets. And the only way to do that in an economy where youth unemployment constitutes 78% of total unemployment is to promote growth and competitive oriented sustainable enterprises.

Peace Revolution Fellowship II

Dates: 21 June – 20 July 2010

Where:  Thailand

Are you a young peace activist who is looking for something more to help you in your life and work?

Are you interested in Buddhism and Buddhist approaches to peace building?

Would you like to learn how to develop your own inner peace so that you can more effectively engage in your peace work?

The Peace Revolution Project is now accepting applications for the 2010 Fellowship in Thailand. The Fellowship is open to all young peace activists who believe that Inner Peace + Outer Peace = Sustainable World Peace

Aims of the Program

Participants will:

  • Study and practice inner peace techniques with youth working on peace from around the world.
  • Learn about Buddhism and Thai Buddhist culture.
  • Participate or volunteer in the biggest Mass Ordination Ceremony of 100,000 Thai monks.
  • Attend the Peace Revolution workshop to develop their peace activist abilities.

Target Group

Youth aged between 18-30 years old. Up to thirty peace activists will be selected to attend.


  • Deadline for online application (need a visa to enter to Thailand) – 22 April 2010
  • Deadline for online application (no need for visa to enter to Thailand) – 1 May 2010


Applicants must:

  • Be 18-30 years old at the time of submitting the application;
  • Have completed at least 1 month of the Peace Revolution online self-development program;
  • Have good proficiency in written and spoken English language;
  • Be optimistic, open-minded, show leadership potential, and have a genuine interest in peace.

Fellowship Program

  • Week 1-3: Peace Revolution Retreat (focus on Meditation and Buddhist Studies)
  • Week 4: Attend the biggest Mass Ordination Ceremony of 100,000 monks in Thailand and Peace Revolution workshop.

Peace Revolution will provide food and accommodation for all participants in the fellowship program. There is also a limited grant scheme to cover participants′ flights to Thailand. Please ask if you would like to apply for funding for your airfare.

Please submit your online application at and

start the online self-development program today via

For further detail, please contact Ping Ping, Project Coordinator, at