The importance of inter-generational dialogue

What does it mean to be ‘World Ready’?

How important is it for adults to support and guide young people, encouraging them to become active, engaged citizens? Here, Nellie Munala, National Director of The President’s Award – Kenya, discusses the benefit of inter-generational dialogue and mentoring.  

“By shaping young people, the Award puts now – and the future – in the hands of young people so that they are able to define their destiny and that of generations to come.”

Bahamas Award NAO

A vehicle for non-formal education:

“At 25 years, Ranft Maleshe, a civil engineer, speaks candidly of his Award journey, narrating his before and after experiences. He joined the Award as a boy, full of energy and a competitive spirit. He progressed and completed his Gold Award and he now speaks with pride of what the Award has helped him become. He understands that the value of a team is synergy and that it is far better to work in teams than alone.

“Generally, the Award framework promotes values and provides an opportunity for a young person to identify their talent and progressively improve on that talent, to become the best they can be. The participant’s journey requires that a young person works with a range of individuals, that is, peers and adult mentors. This experience helps a young person interact with a range of stakeholders with the aim of achieving a common goal. Teamwork provides one with an opportunity to build skills that include, listening, interpersonal, negotiation, as well as respect.

The skills that young people develop as they participate in the Award provide them with the confidence and resilience to face challenges. The Award’s values prepare young people to seek appropriate channels to address these challenges.

“The Award framework helps young people improve on their consistency, an aspect in life that many people struggle with. Instead of burning brightly once then going off, the Award helps you learn how to hone your skill for an hour each week. This helps young people to plan their time efficiently – a quality that helps one effectively achieve desired results and make a difference in society.

“The skills that young people develop as they participate in the Award provide them with the confidence and resilience to face the challenges the country is experiencing e.g. rising youth unemployment, drugs and substance abuse, corruption, violence and conflict. The Award’s values prepare young people to seek appropriate channels to address these challenges. Channels that promote non-violent and peaceful means of resolving challenges as well as emphasising on honest hard work as a reasonable measure of integrity.

“The Award promotes inter-generational dialogue, which is important as it creates avenues for different genres in society to play a role in identifying opportunities and challenges in communities as well as taking up significant roles in making contributions in the development of communities and the wider society. In the process, inter-generational dialogue mentors young people to assume roles in society – hence making them ready for the world.

“The world should encourage and provide opportunities for inter-generational dialogue and action so that the world is prepared/ready for young people to actively participate in and transform societies.”

– Nellie Munala, National Director of The President’s Award – Kenya

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