Youth activist attends world summit in Russia

Monday, October 30, 2017

Sise Sawaneh, a youth activist and journalist working at the Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS), recently joined 30,000 participants from around the world to participate in a two-week summit held in Sochi, Russia.

According to Sise, this was her biggest ever international conference attended with different nationality, culture and race which created a platform for inter cultural dialogue on global issues.

This summit was the 19th edition of the world Festival of Youth and Student organized by its founder, the World Federation of Democratic Youth which has consultative status with UNESCO and the national preparatory committee of the host country.

Sise had also contributed to different panel discussions such as the importance of struggle against women’s inequality, child exploitation and children’s rights, truth and lies in modern journalism, solution to global problems in environmental protections, healthcare and environment.

She also contributed on ways to cope with international problems and challenges, establishment of a global network of youth ambassadors among host of other panels.

Commenting on one of her sessions, Madam Sawaneh said child exploitation was a global issue and needs a global perspective to tackle the menace.

“We have seen how children are being exploited in different sectors and most of the times, these are their immediate families so the change must begin with oneself to protect all children.”

She called on stakeholders to take firm steps to protect the rights of children, especially the girl child who is most of the time victim of such abuses.

“I am proud of myself for adding my voice to a discussion that I am so much passionate about and I believe that the issue of children must not be discussed in isolation. Despite all these legal instruments that our world leaders have ratified, there still needs robust implementation in our respective countries,” she added.

Madam Sawaneh commended The Gambia government for having the foresight to ban Female Genital Mutilation and child marriage while expecting more will be done for the girl child.

Sise was also the only Gambian selected to explore one of the biggest cities in Russia called Tyumen which is known for its rich cultural values, food, settings and with over 3000 foreign students.

Sharing her Tyumen experience, she said that Tyumen has one of the biggest industrial universities, youth theatre centers and fortress where women solely depend on cabbage for a living.

Despite Russia being one of the frostiest countries in the world, Sise hailed the country as one of the best and promised to visit again.

Sise will also represent The Gambia at the Ecowas Early Warning and Response Mechanism’s workshop on emerging threats in the Ecowas region and response indicators review from 30th October to November 3rd in Dakar, Senegal.